Friday, November 25, 2011

Making my own stamps

I have been thoroughly enjoying Julie Balzer's 30 Days in your Journal class. In one of the daily videos for the class, Julie used a filmstrip stamp that was really cute.  She always offers alternatives to materials if you don't have them and she suggested that you make a stamp.  I have always wanted to do this, but had no idea how to do it.  I picked up a quick online mini workshop from Alisa Burke (whose art and style I always love) and in just a few minutes I was carving my own stamps.  I started with the filmstrip stamp that Julie had suggested.

Another shot with the carving tool!

In this photo you can see a little box up in the top right that I started with - just to get the hang of things.  Basically, you dig out the parts of the stamp material where you don't want the image to touch the ink pad (you can buy some here that is pink along with a couple of simple tools - mine was the same basic kind - just grey - Speedball Speedy Carve Stamp Making Kit).

At first, I thought it would be really hard, but it was - as are most crafts - much easier than I anticipated and highly therapeutic.

As you can see from the first picture, I didn't stop at the filmstrip.  I added three different wine bottles (a benefit of making your own stamps - you can add all sorts of variations that you want), a wine glass, a flower, a butterfly, and a paint brush.

Since I was coming home to the farm, I worked with dad to cut wood bases for each of the stamps on the band saw, sand them down to make them comfortable in my hands, and then applied the stamp the wood with contact cement.  Given how expensive a stamp is in the store - yet how inexpensive the stamp material is to buy, I've already paid for the supplies and the class just in the six seven stamps I've already made. Julie Balzer, oddly enough, had a tutorial on making a chevron stamp on her blog earlier this week if you want a simple idea with some nice pictures to get you started.

What crafty idea has amazed you at how easy it is?  If you make a stamp, I'd love to have you share it with me in the comments.

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