Our "How To" Guide
At Rubber Stamp Tapestry, we love to see all the wonderful techniques our customers are using to create beautiful cards and designs. Below are some of the "best practice" tips we have compiled over the years. With these simple instructions, you will quickly be on your way to stamping your own one-of-a-kind crafting project. To be notified about other card-making Tutorials & Ideas, you will want to sign-up here for the bi-monthly Rubber Stamp Tapestry Newsletter which also offers exclusive sales and discounts to only our newsletter subscribers.
Simple Stamping Tips
- Cushion Your Work
Put a pad of paper, a magazine, or a mouse pad underneath your stamping project. This creates a cushioned base and makes for better impressions.
- Apply Ink
Lightly tap the stamp two or three times as you rotate it onto the ink pad. A solid image will require more ink than a detailed image. Look at the stamp to determine coverage. The goal is to apply ink only to the flat surface of the rubber stamp image and not deep within all the crevices of the rubber stamp. Too much ink will prevent your artwork from having clear edges.
- Test Before Stamping
It is a good idea to test your stamp and your ink on a scrap piece of paper before stamping on your project.
- Vary the Pressure
If there is a circle or edge around your stamped image you are applying too much pressure when you stamp. Fine line drawings need only a gentle tap to keep the image clear and detailed. A solid stamp image, especially a large one (like a Jumbo stamp) will require more pressure.
- Use A Technique Called "Stamping Off"
To add depth and dimension to your artwork, stamp two or three times without re-inking to create a variation in color.
- Rotate Often
For a more natural look, rotate the stamp slightly in between impressions.
Stamping a Wreath
Choose the predominant (larger) image from your stamp set and start off by stamping the north, south, east and west points of your card. These marks will now become your guidelines for creating the circle for your wreath. You can continue filling in with the remaining stamps, or go back and stamp again with the first one in a different, or lighter (stamping off) color. Now, just fill in between with the remaining images, focusing on eliminating negative space and creating balance around the wreath. This technique is quick and easy and with the even number of impressions creates a symmetrical wreath.
To add variation or to create a more asymmetrical wreath, imagine your stamping surface is a clock. Start by stamping the predominant image at hour marks 11 o'clock, 2 o'clock, 4 o'clock, and then between the hour marks 6 o'clock and 7 o'clock. Finally, stamp at hour mark 9 o'clock. Then, as before, fill in between with the remaining images. This technique takes a bit more practice and by using an odd number of impressions, it will create a more natural looking wreath.
To create a border, you can use a template, chalk, or a fine pencil line to direct your path. Stamp the largest images first, leaving space in between for the remaining images and fill in as needed.
While you're stamping, it's a good idea to clean your stamps between ink colors to keep them from cross contaminating your inks.
We recommend using a quality stamp cleaner and a microfiber cloth. Spray a bit of cleaner on the cloth, rotate the stamp until all the ink is gone and then rotate the stamp on a clean section of the cloth to dry it. That's all it takes to keep your stamps at optimal performance.
When you're done with your project and before storing your stamps, you'll want to make sure to give them a final cleaning.
You will want to avoid any cleaner that contains alcohol as this will cause your stamps to dry and crack. Do not soak wood mounted stamps in water. There are a variety of commercial cleaners you can use, but we find this simple recipe to be an excellent cleaner for both red rubber and clear stamps. It moisturizes the stamps and prevents them from cracking.
Our DIY Stamp Cleaning Recipe
- 2 TBS glycerine
- 1 tsp environmentally friendly dishwashing liquid
- 7 fl. oz. distilled water
Pour ingredients into a spray bottle, shake and use. If cleaning causes the StampRight™ placement line to fade, just redraw the line with a fine tipped Sharpie® or other marker.
To keep your rubber stamps healthy for many years to come, it is best to store them out of direct sunlight and if you store them vertically make sure the rubber ends face upward to protect the beautiful shape of the rubber.
Peg Stamping has Never Been Easier!
That's it! With these tips in mind and just a little practice, you can create beautiful borders, frames and wreaths with Rubber Stamp Tapestry's Peg Stamps.