DIY Ink Recipes: Crafting Your Own Ink Creations at The Dabble Spot — The Dabble Spot (2024)

From the ancient scribes of Egypt to the Renaissance artists of Europe, ink has left its mark on countless works of art and literature. While you can easily buy ink from the store, there's something uniquely satisfying about crafting your own ink at home. In this blog, we'll delve into the fascinating world of DIY ink-making and share some simple yet rewarding recipes to get you started.

The Beauty of DIY Ink

Creating your own ink offers several advantages:

1. Customization: You can tailor the color, texture, and consistency of your ink to suit your artistic vision.

2. Cost-Effective: DIY ink can be more budget-friendly than purchasing commercial inks, especially if you're an avid artist.

3. Sustainability: Making your own ink allows you to control the ingredients and reduce the use of harmful chemicals, contributing to a more eco-friendly approach.

4. Creativity: Experimenting with ink recipes can lead to unique and unexpected results, sparking your creativity.

2. Binders: Binders hold the pigment particles together and adhere them to the paper. Common binders include gum arabic, shellac, or gelatin.

3. Additives: Additives can modify the ink's properties, such as its flow, drying time, or thickness. Some examples include vinegar, glycerin, or water.


- A handful of fresh or frozen berries (blackberries, blueberries, or raspberries work well)

- 1 tsp vinegar

- Water

- A small pot for cooking

- A fine-mesh strainer

- A small jar or container for storage


1. Place the berries in a small pot and add enough water to cover them.

2. Simmer the berries on low heat for about 10-15 minutes until they release their juices and the liquid thickens slightly.

3. Remove the pot from the heat and strain the berry mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a jar or container. Discard the solid remains.

4. Add 1 teaspoon of vinegar to the strained berry juice and stir well. The vinegar acts as a preservative.

5. Allow the berry ink to cool before sealing the container for storage.


- 2-3 charcoal sticks or briquettes

- 2 tbsp gum arabic

- 1 tsp glycerin

- Water

- A small jar or container for storage


1. Grind the charcoal sticks into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle or a grinder.

2. In a separate container, mix the gum arabic with glycerin and a small amount of water to create a thick paste.

3. Gradually add the charcoal powder to the gum arabic mixture, stirring continuously until the ink reaches your desired consistency. Adjust the water and gum arabic proportions as needed.

4. Transfer your homemade charcoal ink to a small jar or container for storage. Seal it tightly to prevent drying.

- Experimentation is key. Feel free to adjust the ingredient proportions to achieve the color and consistency you desire.

- Be patient. Some homemade inks may need time to settle and develop their full color.

- Store your DIY ink in a cool, dark place to prolong its shelf life.

- Always label your homemade inks with the date of creation and ingredients used.

Creating your own ink at home is a rewarding and creative endeavor that connects you to a long history of artists and scribes. Whether you're an experienced artist or a curious beginner, these DIY ink recipes offer a unique way to explore your artistic potential and add a personal touch to your creations. So, gather your ingredients, embrace the art of ink-making, and let your creativity flow onto the canvas.

Happy Inking,

Laurie & Bex

**Lampblack, also known as carbon black, is a form of carbon that is commonly used in ink-making. You can obtain lampblack through the following methods:

1. Soot Collection:

- This is the traditional method for collecting lampblack. You'll need a clean, controlled flame source like a candle, oil lamp, or kerosene lamp.

- Hold a clean surface above the flame to collect the soot. A cool, smooth surface like a glass or metal plate works well.

- The soot will gradually accumulate on the surface. Scrape it off periodically using a clean, dry tool like a knife or scraper.

2. Purchase Lampblack:

- Lampblack is also available for purchase in art supply stores or online. It's commonly sold in powdered form, making it convenient for DIY ink-making.

3. Make Lampblack Using a Flame:

- If you don't have access to a traditional flame source, you can create lampblack by burning a material that contains carbon, like a piece of wood, in a controlled environment.

- Place the material in a container that can withstand high heat, like a metal tin or an old can.

- Ignite the material and let it burn, ensuring that the container is closed or covered to trap the soot.

- As the material burns, it will produce soot that collects on the interior surface of the container. You can then scrape it off and collect it.

4. Purchase Charcoal and Grind It:

- Charcoal sticks or briquettes can be ground into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle or a grinder. This powdered charcoal can serve as an alternative to traditional lampblack.

When collecting soot or lampblack, it's important to ensure that the collection surface or container is clean and free from contaminants, as any foreign substances can affect the quality of the lampblack. Additionally, exercise caution when working with flames to prevent accidents or injuries. Always work in a well-ventilated area when creating soot or lampblack through combustion methods.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

DIY Ink Recipes: Crafting Your Own Ink Creations at The Dabble Spot — The Dabble Spot (2024)


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