February 19, 2010

Gocco Fail

I asked for a gocco for Christmas.  I know that it may not have been the wisest choice considering gocco supplies are becoming increasingly expensive and difficult to find, but it was just one of those have-to-have things.  Searching for Gocco'd invitations was, after all, how I found Weddingbee!

So, I ended up receiving a PG-10 Gocco for Christmas and I let it sit.  It sat in its box for about two months, half because I hadn't finalized an invitation design, and half because I was a little intimidated by the whole process.  Sure, I'd watched enough videos online to know how the gocco works, but I was pretty nervous I'd ruin my precious screens. 

A few nights ago I decided I wanted to try it out.  My invitation suite design is finished, and I knew I had to get on the ball making the invites because they have to go out soon!  Eek!  (And they're going to take forever) The sleeve I designed and used the Cricut to cut had the simplest gocco design, so I figured that'd be the best place to start.  

Blank, assembled sleeve.  Our invitations will be fabric-backed, and the fabric will show through the heart cutout.

The Sleeves are cut from Paper Source's cover-weight paper in pool, template designed in illustrator and cut on the Cricut via Sure Cuts A Lot.  The plan is to have our names above the heart, and a quote below, all in white gocco ink.

I printed out my design elements using the laser printer at work, and assembled them on the registration plate.

I used the sleeve to eyeball the spacing, but removed it before burning my screen.  I was hoping I'd be able to burn the screen so that I'd be able to print the whole sleeve with one press.  

Quote reads: "You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.  -- Dr. Seuss"

When everything was in place, I inserted my screen and the blue UV filter (because I'm not sure when I should and shouldn't use it, I thought I'd be safe), and was almost ready to burn my screen.  Nervous!

The bulbs went into the lamp housing, and the housing went on top of the gocco.  I was so nervous, I forgot to take pictures of those steps!  

I closed my eyes, took a deep breath and pushed down.  Nervouuuus!  I've gotta say, this part was pretty anti-climactic.  I'm not sure what I expected, TBH... I think I saw a bit of the flash through closed eyes, and I could hear the bulbs crack faintly for about four seconds, then it was over.  I was excited to see if my first screen burned successfully!

The design sticks to the screen after burning, so I peeled it away and was left with my prepared screen.  You can definitely see where the film has been removed from the screen, so it's easy to inspect for any mistakes.  For the mooost part, my screen turned out okay.  But, I was disappointed to see a small flaw:
The Y on "finally" didn't turn out!  Ugh.  I know that I can always burn it again, but I hate using more bulbs than I need to.  Oh wells.  I was still excited about playing with the gocco, so I printed our names on a few of the sleeves.

The cool thing about the gocco model I have (I'm not sure if they all come with this?) is that it has a clear plastic registration plate.  You can print on that, place your paper on the sticky mat under it, and move the sticky mat until the gocco'd design is where you need it to be.

Our names printed on the registration plate

The registration plate lies flat over our sleeve, so that we can reposition the sticky mat as need be.  The sleeve needs to be moved to the left a little; our names are too high up.

Everything was in place, so I went ahead and pressed down to print.

I really like the white ink on the pool paper, but my prints weren't exactly even.  The middle printed really well, but the edges were much lighter.

The B in Mr. Doxie's name didn't come out very well, and the dot over my J didn't seem to be closed.  

So, my first round of gocco attempts didn't turn out very well.  But I'm optimistic!  Round two's going down this Sunday and I know that they'll come out better.  I can't wait to see all of the sleeves finished; I know I'll love them when they're done!

How many of you learned to use a new (to you) crafting gadget for your wedding crafts?  Were you successful on your first try?  Do any of you have any super gocco tips for me?

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