Rub Ons - Love them or Hate them?

by Julie Hyde on August 20, 2022

Rubons - Love em or Hate em?

Scrapbook Rub Ons are getting more and more popular!  They're super easy to use and the quality today is much better than it was years ago. Rub Ons are  are a great addition to almost any layout and now come in a much wider variety of designs. In this quick Blog Post we'll discuss everything you need to know about using scrapbook rub ons and incorporating them into your craft projects.

What are Rub Ons?

A Rub on is a form of sticker, dry transfer that you can place on any craft projects. 

They can be found in most scrapbooking or craft stores in flat packets with a little ice cream stick included for helping you transfer the images or words to your project. 

 Unlike stickers, rub-ons usually do not have a peel off top and a sticky back, however. They are usually printed on the 'wrong side' of a piece of smooth, clear acetate.

I used Rub Ons on these tags. Mainly to use my old ones up. They can be quite effective used like this.

They were from an old Kaisercraft set, from an old collection called 'Secret Bird Society'. There are still some available in the Secret Bird Society Rub Ons up in the shop.  

How to Apply Rub Ons?

The print in itself is a little sticky and Rub Ons will be resting on a non stick backing sheet when you buy them. Keep them on this sheet till you are ready to use them, then carefully cut away the one you want to use at the time. 

Leave the backing sheet intact to continue protecting the other rub ons for you. 

 When you want to use one of the words or images, carefully cut around the image and remove it from the backing sheet. It is then very easy to apply pressure to the 'right' side of the acetate to encourage the words or graphics to adhere to another surface. By doing this you won't end up damaged the other Rub Ons.

What Surfaces Can You Apply Rub Ons to?

You can apply them to just about anything including flat paper, cardstock, plastic, smooth wood surfaces. Anywhere that is smooth, hard and non-porous. I used some vintage bird rubon images on these Vintage Tags. The Rub ons I used were very old, but still worked. Because they were part of the background, it didn't really matter whether they were 100% perfect. However they did rub off fully intact.

I hope you found this post interesting and why not give this technique a try.  Leave a little comment below and tell me what you think?

What Kinds are available?

One of the most popular types of rub ons are letters. Letters commonly come in black, but you'll also find ones in color and even ones with little designs on them. There are also rub on pendants, borders, journal blocks, flowers, and so much more.‍ Today there is a much wider variety and some of the designs are so pretty such as this set from 49 and Market 

What Brands are Available?

Most crafters believe Rub-Ons are a waste of time as they were so finicky to use and unpredictable in terms of whether they will transfer in one piece.  I believe, though that the quality has improved much over the years and there are many brands that are including Rub Ons within their collections. Some of my favourite brands lately are:

49 and Market Rub Ons

49 and Market design beautiful Rubon products, many with floral, leaves, vines and butterflies images in soft pastel colours. Some of the ranges include Vintage Artistry, Botanical Meadow and ArtViken. There is a plastic tool included in each pack. These Rubons are perfect for large surface or detailed pieces and each sheet is made of high quality colored transfer paper. 

Prima Rub Ons

Instant beauty on virtually any surface you can imagine. Prima rub-on transfers release onto a wide variety of surfaces allowing for a multitude of decor, furniture and multi-media uses. They are good for using on DIY projects.

Vicki Boutin Rub Ons

If you're into mixed media, then you will love the Vicki Boutin range of rub ons. They are high quality transfers, bright, colourful and quirky.

Shop Scrap of Your Life

We have plenty of different Rub Ons available over at Scrap of Your Life. However you can also purchase them from places such as Scrapbooking Stores, Bargain Stores, Amazon, Etsy and many other places. 

 Question? Are you a lover or a hater of Rubons? Let me know in the comments.

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