Alcohol Inked Tile Coasters




About: I am a Crafter in Sacramento, California and enjoy life most when I am making and creating!!!

Simple and Cheap - this project was so easy to complete but turned out so beautiful - It was the perfect Father's Day gift!!

Step 1: Project Ingredients

Project Ingredients:
  • 4 tile coasters (the non-porous and shiny kind :)
  • Ranger Alcohol Inks ( several colors of choice)
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Felt
  • Black Paint
  • Mod Podge Glue ( or glue of choice)
  • Paint brushes
  • Wax paper or something to protect you work surface ( these inks me - I learned the hard way !) 
  • Spray Sealer

Step 2: Spread on the Alcohol:

After covering your workspace with wax paper, begin to spread alcohol generously onto the tile....

Step 3: Add Droplets of Ink Onto Alcohol-coated Surface

Lay out your inks in the order that you plan to use them - this part goes pretty fast because the ink begins to spread right away and you will want the colors to remain in the section you had planned for them..... Begin dropping your color onto the tiles by adding each color to combine in your pattern of choice.

Step 4: Watch Out for White Spots:

After the inks have spread a bit, some parts may spread to reveal un-inked white spots....while this can be annoying, I found that continuing to add tiny drops of color on those areas eventually closed up and the entire tile was covered with color!
( the front tile in the picture shows the white spots appearing after a minute or so of drying)

Step 5: Paint the Sides Black:

After an hour or two of drying time (just to make sure the inks are completely dry), it's now time to paint the sides of each coaster with black paint to give the tile a finished look when its all said and done.

Step 6: Add Glue to Back:

After allowing the black paint to completely dry, turn your tile over and all the Modge Podge glue (or your glue of choice) generously to the entire back.....making sure to get it into the grooves.

Step 7: Add Felt Backing:

Cut black (or color of choice) felt pieces to fit the back of the tile before-hand and place carefully onto glued area. Make sure to press the felt into the glue between the grooves to make sure it is attached thoroughly.

Step 8: Add the Spray Sealer:

After allowing the glued felt to dry for a bit, now you can lay your tiles out to spray the sealer onto the top side and allow to dry overnight.
 (I almost didn't add the sealer, but I worried that the inks would scratch and come off with the wear of being used, so I decided to go ahead and seal them.)

Step 9: Wrap It Up and Enjoy!

Your  all done and just a simple ribbon or tie to hold the coasters together works great when giving these as gifts...Enjoy!!



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    16 Discussions


    Question 6 months ago on Introduction

    What kind of sealer can I use that WON'T strip my colors?? Please see photos, I have tried vellum gloss and mod podge and it keeps stripping the inks!! Do I need to let it dry for 24 hours before applying the sealer coat?? I cant use the krylon spray you do because I don't have my own space, and when I tried spraying spray sealer in the backyard it freakin stained the ground So my dad wasn't too happy about that. Please help!! So frustrating!!!

    1 answer

    Answer 5 months ago


    I make these tiles and sell them every week at farmer's markets, craft fairs and art shows. I make about 150 per week and have never had one returned. I use a different method than this instructor.

    I don't use alcohol - I use the blending solution from Adirondack - that way it flows better and there are no white spots.

    I don't paint the sides with acrylic paint - I use fat sharpie pens for the sides (they are alcohol ink so they are permanent and won't crack off like paint will.

    I seal my tiles with epoxy resin - the best one is Art Resin but I also use the brand by Marine Supply. I tried sprays and they just don't work. Even if you spray far away - after a few uses, the ink starts rubbing off. Only use Epoxy resin!

    For the backs, I don't use felt. When it gets wet, it gets wavy and sometimes the inks that they use to dye the felt with can stain the table or countertop. I only use cork for the backs. See my work at or Facebook KipperDoodle Art.


    Question 7 months ago on Introduction

    Anyone had any experience with transferring an image onto ceramic tile? I am trying to find out if I should do the image transfer onto the white tile first, let dry, and then apply alcohol ink or apply the ink first as a background and do the transfer once the ink is dry and then finish with the clear coat. Any thoughts?

    Thanks, Tonift

    1 answer

    Answer 5 months ago

    I use tumbled travertine tile and ceramic tiles for image transfers. I use label paper (after I have used the labels - the slick backing) and sometimes I use white paper or transfer paper. You need a laser printer, Liquitex Matte Gel (not ModPodge), and Satin Polycrylic Sealer (no sprays or Epoxy). Sometimes I use my Silhouette for vinyl overlays - but only on the ceramic and on those I use the epoxy as a sealer.


    10 months ago

    Alcohol ink needs to be sprayed with Kamar lacquer before using the final sealant or the ink will reactivate and spread.


    1 year ago

    how did you decide what finish to sparay on the tiles?


    2 years ago

    You can also buy small square/circles of adhesive felt and use for the bottom. You can add glue to the adhesive to make them stay on better

    I love your coasters!


    2 years ago

    even though I've sealed my coasters with seal pray the alcohol ink is coming off ? Where did I go wrong?


    3 years ago

    I am new to alcohol inks and am really enjoying doing the tiles. I appreciate your instructions. I was disappointed when I used Krylon UV resistant gloss and it changed the colours of one tile and added little white blotches to another. looks like it's snowing on 1\3 of the tile. i did shake the can well before i sprayed.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    When did you apply the sealant spray? I am assuming after you painted the black paint?


    4 years ago on Introduction

    I am so glad to find your instructions! I am new to alcohol ink and have made several 4"x4" tiles that I want to turn into coasters. I love the effect, but the dry ink scratches off and also reacts to water. I tried a clear acrylic sealer, but it reacted with the paint. I am assuming the Krylon Clear Glaze does NOT react with the alcohol ink? Your coasters are gorgeous!


    4 years ago

    My daughter is following your instructions exactly and her beautiful designs keep disappearing! Help??

    1 reply
    wicked jypsitinamama

    Reply 4 years ago

    I had the same problem and i was able to get the areas filled in by continuing to add drops of color to the areas where the colors had shifted. If you wait a few minutes to let the color settle then drop more color into the white area, they will all get filled in. I hope this helps and I apologize for the delay in replying!!