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Craft Stamp Tips And Ideas

Stamping Technique Basics

Stamps can be used to create many different kinds of techniques

Stamps can be used to create many different kinds of techniques

Craft stamping is a versatile craft where you can turn the ordinary into something truly amazing. Stamps provide you with an image that you don't have to draw yourself. But they enable you to be creative and express your artistic side in each piece. There are stamps to suit every occasion. You can buy stamps as individuals and in sets.

There are basically two types of stamps- outline and solid. Solid stamps have a very detailed design that is just inked to create a design. Outline stamps have an outline and are colored by different techniques to create an image.

There are three types of stamps that you can choose to stamp your images. Each type of stamp has its own features and uses. You can choose from rubber stamps, foam stamps and acrylic stamps or clear stamps. Each has a distinctive advantage that makes a unique image.

Stamped images can be used on greeting cards, scrapbook pages and all types of paper craft projects.

Stamping is one of the most popular crafting techniques ever! I know that for me there isn't one week where my hands aren't stamping and coloring either a card or a scrapbook page. I guess it goes back to my childhood when I loved to color in coloring books. Well, now I do big girl coloring with delightful stamps and delicious inks.

The basics aren't hard to learn and once you do, you will find that you want to learn more. We're starting with the basics here to wet your creative appetite.

Once you learn the basics, there are endless creative opportunities for using your stamps with different techniques and ideas

Acrylic Or Rubber Or Foam Stamps

Rubber stamps are fun to use and very creative

Rubber stamps are fun to use and very creative

The Differences Between Different Types Of Stamps

The main difference between Acrylic stamps and the others is that you can see through the acrylic stamp. This makes it easy to see where you are stamping. This type of stamp has some stickness to it. It clings to an acrylic block which is used to stamp it. The problem with acrylic stamps is in the way they are manufactured. There are poor quality and better ones. When you purchase the cheaper ones, they often will yellow and stretch. They often harden and lose their cling after a time. But like any other tool, if you take care of them properly, you will have them for a lifetime

The rubber stamp is often mounted on a wooden block. It's held on with self-adhesive foam. Some rubber stamps are unmounted, so you have to have a way to actually to hold the rubber stamp on, usually with an adhesive foam or an acrylic block. Rubber stamps generally give the most detail-that is fine lines and shading-then the other stamps The rubber stamp is also the most durable of the stamps. Taken care of properly, they will last a lifetime.

Foam stamps are generally mounted on a foam block. They generally give very little detail but still have some good design options. Foam stamps are more solid images that are softer. They are perfect for design looks when you are working with backgrounds

The final difference is durability. The rubber stamps can take some techniques, like bleaching and stayson ink, where other stamps may not be durable enough to deal with those.

Am I recommending one over the other? Not at all! I love each one of them. I have lots of each type in my craft room. What I am saying is that you need to know how to use each one so that you get the most for your craft dollar.

Rubber Stamp Basics


Rubber Stamps mostly often come mounted on a wood block. Sometimes on the back of the block, they have a picture that is colored to give you ideas about use of color and design. When you stamp with these stamps, you are not able to see where the stamp will be set, so it's important to line things up as you work with your design. You can also get rubber stamps in unmounted stamps. They are cheaper because they need to be mounted by you. Mounting these stamps is very easy. You simple need mounting foam and acrylic block. The mounting foam is sticky on both sides, you mount the stamp on the foam and then stick it onto the acrylic block. The choice is up to you on which ones you prefer.

Probably the most popular craft that people use rubber stamps for is greeting cards. There are so many ways to use rubber stamps on cards. As a beginner, you will want to start off with the basics. Click here to get some ideas to make basic greeting cards with rubber stamps.

Storing Your Rubber Stamps

After you have started to collect some rubber stamps, you will need to create a system for storing them. Storing your stamps correctly will prolong the life of your stamps so that you get the most from your craft investment.

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  1. Always store the stamps with the rubber side down on a smooth surface. Any uneven surface may cause marks id the stamp that will cause it to be useless.
  2. Do not stack too many stamps on top of one another for the same reason If you do stack, make sure to place the bigger heavier ones on the bottom.
  3. Clean unused pizza boxes make perfect storage solutions for rubber stamps. They can be stored on top of one another and labeled on the sides.
  4. Keep rubber stamps away from sunlight. It will dry the rubber and cause it to become brittle.

Stamping With Rubber Stamps

One of the most important ways to make sure that you get the best imprint when stamping with rubber stamps is to make sure that the entire stamp is coated evenly with ink.

Small rubber stamps can be inked by gently tapping the stamp onto the ink pad. Several small, gentle taps are better than pressing the stamp into the pad. This might risk over inking the stamp.

If the stamp is bigger than the ink pad, lay it flat with the image side up. Tap the ink pad evenly over the face of the stamp. Apply only gentle hits with the ink oad so that you do not over ink or get under inked sections.

If a large outline stamp has lots of open areas within the design, it is important not to get ink into the open areas which might result in spoiling the finished stamped image. The best way to ink a large outline stamp is to take an ink pad and tap it around the lines of the stamp. Angling the ink pad slightly will help to direct the ink.


  • Have a good light source when you are working so that you will be able to check that the stamp is evenly coated with ink
  • Gently breathing on an inked pad will provide just enough moisture to revive dried ink.
  • Clean your stamps after each use to get better results

Using A Stamp Positioner

A stamp positioner helps you place your image in the exact location that you want. This can be important , especially when you are using rubber stamps. Because you cannot see through the wood and rubber of the stamp, a stamp positioner is a handy tool. Using one will cause you to have less frustration and more joy and satisfaction.

Lots of people are using stamp positioners with clear stamps too. Sometimes it is difficult to get a stamped saying or image within another image. The stamp positioner makes it easy every time.

The stamp positioner is similar to an angled ruler. There are metal ones as well as clear plastic ones. There are however, different designs that you can use. Fiskars has a unique all in one concept the you can see below. There is another design called " Stamp-A-Ma-Jig that is a little different. There tools average between $8-$12 dollars. They are a good buy especially for beginner stampers.

The nest step up would be a stamping platform. These are acrylic platforms with lines crossing the top. They have springs. You ink the stamp and place it where you want it. You move the stamp on your project and push down to stamp. These average $16-$25 each. However they cannot be used with mounted rubber stamps.

Cleaning Your Rubber Stamps

Cleaning your rubber stamps will secure that your investment in them will last for a long time

Cleaning your rubber stamps will secure that your investment in them will last for a long time

Your rubber stamps are an investment. Keeping them clean is an important part of making them last for years to come. There are many benefits of keeping your stamp clean.

  1. First, cleaning your rubber stamp between ink pad colors will keep your inkpads from getting contaminated with another color
  2. Over a period of time, inks left on a rubber stamp will blur the image
  3. Unclean stamps gather dirt and dust that will result in bad image

Before you start cleaning your stamps, tap them once or twice on a paper towel to get any excess ink off the stamp.

Baby Wipes

Alcohol free baby wipes are perfect for cleaning your rubber stamps. Though they may not get into all the crevices of the stamp, they are a handy way to clean the stamp between colors.

Stamp Cleaners

These cleaners are made to clean your rubber stamps. They typically come in a bottle, often with a dauber on the top so that you can clean the stamp. There are also stamp pads that are cleaners. One side of the stamp is for scrubbing and the other side is for drying. You apply some cleaner to the scrubber side. Run the stamp over the cleaner. When you are happy with the results, use the dyer side to get any excess off.

Soap And Water

You can use dishwashing soap and an old toothbrush to clean your rubber stamps. But never soak a rubber stamp that is mounted on wood in a dishpan or water. The water may damage the stamp by pulling the stamp away from the wood.

Stamp Shammy

The stamp shammy is a cloth that when activated with water will clean the ink off your rubber stamps. The cloth is reusable and you never have to wash it. It works even when the cloth is covered with ink. I would not be without this tool.

Rub It Scrub It

This tool is used to help you clean all kinds of stamps and tools where you may have used inks. It is safe for stamps and can be used over and over again. Can be used with stamp cleaners or soap and water. Allow to air dry.

Things You Can Do With Rubber Stamps

Think beyond just stamping a single image with your rubber stamps. The fun and creativity to use these go way beyond that. You just need to think about creative uses for your rubber stamps.

Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Stamp some images on a plain gift bag for a more custom look
  • Stamp the outside of an envelope and color it
  • Stamp some images on your kids lunch bags
  • Decorate candles
  • Make party invites
  • Make a gift card holder
  • Create custom wedding decor
  • Stamp napkins
  • Stamp on gift wrap

Rubber Stamp Tips


Here are some tips that will help you get the most from your rubber stamps:

  1. Never rock your stamps when you are making an image. This will make an impression of the edge of the stamp plus the image you are stamping
  2. It never hurts to do a test stamp image before you stamp your project. Just keep some scrap paper on your work surface to do it.
  3. Reink your stamp before you repeat an image. That way you will get a clean clear image every time.
  4. Touch the paper only once with the stamp. If you hit the paper with the stamp more than once, you more than likely will get a double image,

Conditioning Stamps Before You Use Them

To get better results with new stamps, always take the time to condition them

To get better results with new stamps, always take the time to condition them

Have you ever bought a brand new stamp or stamp set that just did not give a good image the first time out? Maybe you may have thought that there was something wrong with the stamp set. Well there is one step that you should take every time you get a new stamp set, called stamp conditioning that will take the frustration away. There are sometimes residue left after the manufacturing process that may keep you from getting a clear image. This can be used on all types of stamps. Whichever method you use, keep a light hand.

Here are the steps to get the perfect image from day one. Just chose the method that works best for you.

  1. The Ink, Stamp And Repeat Method-All you need is some scrap paper and some ink. Ink up the stamp and stamp ; Repeat until you get a clear image. Not to worry if the rubber or polymer stamp gets stained. It will not affect future images.
  2. The Eraser Method-Lightly rub a white eraser over the stamp surface. The surface of the stamp may appear a little whiter and that's perfectly ok. Use a microfiber cloth to remove any eraser bits. Clean the stamp with dish soap and water or stamp cleaner before using it.
  3. The Sanding Block Method-This is for red rubber stamps only ! Use a foam sanding block very gently with super fine sanding grit on it. Clean the stamp before using it.

Anytime you are not getting a perfectly good image, give the eraser method a try !

Acrylic Stamp Basics

Acrylic stamps are easy to use and store, They come in a set with a specific theme

Acrylic stamps are easy to use and store, They come in a set with a specific theme

If you have never tried acrylic stamps, you are missing an opportunity to expand your crafts farther than you thought might be possible. These stamps are truly real art in it's best form. With an acrylic block and a stamp that clings to it, you can create an image of fine detail. Like any other collection, start with the basics and add on. Think about the stamps that you have and add some new dimension to your collection.

They come in a set of stamps that usually has a specific theme. Could be things like birthdays, get well, flowers, butterflies, pets, ect. Some sets will include a sentiment or a saying along with the images. The stamps are mounted on a piece of thin acrylic. The image is printed on the acrylic base so that once you use them, you can place them back on the base. There is a second layer of acrylic to keep the stamps clean. The set fits into a clear plastic envelope.

If you are just starting out in stamping or acrylic stamps, start with the most common basic themes like birthdays, holidays and your special interests.

Acrylic stamps will stain and that is ok. It will not cause them not to stamp in future projects any differently.

These stamps are mounted on acrylic blocks or a stamping platform (purchased separately) to stamp with them. You simply line up the stamp on the block or platform, ink it and stamp. It's that easy.

Layered Stamps have come a long was and now are used by a lot of stampers to go beyond a single layered image. You pick one to three colors in the same family, depending on the stamp set you are using. The lightest color is used on the bottom layer. Then you build additional layers in darker colors as you go.

Storing Clear Stamps

Unlike rubber stamps, clear stamps are easy to store. They simply take less room. How you decide to store your clear stamps depend on several things:

  • How large is your collection
  • How much space do you have to store them
  • Your storage budget

Clear Stamp Storage Suggestions

  1. A notebook or binder-Using binders are relatively inexpensive. You can use as many binders as you need to. They are easy to store on bookshelves or in a closet. You can create dividers and sections as needed.
  2. A spin rack-Using a spin rack, especially for stamp sets that you use most often make your collection very visible.You can use a system that sits on a desk or on the floor. However, the supplies for this type of storage system can be a little high.
  3. A vertical system-reasonably inexpensive, storage containers can be stored on shelves, in a closet or on a cart. Wide variety of containers available in different sizes.
  4. CD cases are an easy alternative to all of the above

More Acrylic Stamp Storage Tips

  1. One thing to remember is that acrylic stamps need to be stored in a cool place. Because they are made of plastic, they will go bad if they are too warm.
  2. Keep them out of the sun so that they do not discolor

What Are Photopolymer Stamps?

Photopolymer stamps are clear plastic stamps. They are very much like acrylic stamps in the way that they perform. The only difference is that they are made of a higher quality material and will generally last longer.

This may especially be true with certain types of inks like Stazon. Repeated use of this ink with acrylic stamps may not make them as durable over time as photopolymer or rubber stamps would be.

Photopolymer stamps are made with a material that is more flexible,and less likely to warp or crack over time. Because of the higher grade of plastic, they will often give you a crisper image.

Types Of Inks That You Can Use To Stamp

You have lots of choices when it comes to ink pads

You have lots of choices when it comes to ink pads

Type Of InkInk FeaturesSurfaces Used OnMore Information

Alcohol Inks

Dye based ink in very vivid colors on glossy or coated paper. More muted finish on non coated or textured paper. Considered a permanent ink.

Multiple surfaces including waterproof paper, artist trading cards, glossy cardstock, glass and ceramic tiles,

They have vivid colors on non-porous surfaces like glossy or coated paper, and are more muted on uncoated or textured paper.

Amalgam Inks

No bleeding, dark vibrant color! One pad that does it all! Allow to dry for a minute or two prior to use or heat set for faster drying time.

Amalgam Ink works perfectly with Copic Markers, Watercolors and Colored Pencils with Gamsol.

Chalk Inks

Similar to pigment ink but has a chalky finish. Dries very quickly. Best used with dark card stock

Like pigment ink, it sits on top of your paper, which makes it ideal for use on dark colored card stock.

They are acid-free and archival so great for scrapbooking. They are also permanent when heat set so work great with coloring and water coloring.

Distress Inks

Distress Inks are water-based dye inks.Even though they are water-based they dry slower than other water-based dye inks, so you can emboss with them.

They also react with water, enabling all sorts of techniques. They blend well together and blend well with water to produce different effects.

Dye Inks

These inks are water based. They are mainly non-permanent inks and are on felt pad. They come as a single or multicolored pad. They are translucent and dry quickly

They can be used on most papers, but appear crisper and brighter when stamped on bright glossy paper

Embossing Ink Tinted

These pads are filled with clear, slightly (blue) tinted glycerin based embossing fluid that is slow to dry.These are generally on foam pads. However, they do also come in pens with chisel tips for fine embossing.

Generally paper

Used for embossing projects

Hybrid Inks

Hybrid inks are a cross between dye and pigment inks. They are fast drying inks that are more opaque more like pigment inks

Generally, works on all surfaces.

Retains more color than just dye inks..They come in cubes and full-sized ink pads.

Permanent Solvent Ink

These are available in both water based and solvent based colors. . You should always use these inks in a well-ventilated area.

They can be used on most cardstock paper as well as wood, acetate, shrink plastic, glass, metal, leather and acrylic surfaces.Can be used on almost any surface (other than fabrics that are meant to be washed

May " stain" some stamps but does not affect future stamping. Solvent ink will bleed when it comes into contact with alcohol-based ink like you’d find in a Copic marker. It also dries quickly, so it’s not suitable for embossing.

Pigment Inks

Bright and Opaque in color, pigment inks are thicker and slower to dry. These inks are generally slow drying. . The drying time will depend on the weight and texture of the material you are stamping on

They are great for stamping on card stock. You can stamp lighter colors on darker card stock and the ink color will show.

Because it is slow to dry, this ink can be used for embossing as well as regular stamping

Resist Inks

These inks are made to resist or repel water-based dye inks on glossy paper.

Glossy Paper

It can also act like a "glue" for chalks and paint powders.

Spray Ink

Spray inks are available in a variety of colors, ranging from vibrant shades to subtle hues. Many spray inks are dye based and will behave the same way as normal dye-based inks.


Spray inks are ideal for use with stencils and can produce visual effects that ink pads and stamps are unable to create.

Waterproof Dye Inks

They a different base so that when they’re dry you can color and watercolor over them and they won’t bleed or smear.

These inks are great for line images that you want to color in, and these inks tend to be more colorfast than their regular dye ink counterparts.

All About Craft Inks - Tips, Ideas And Uses


I love to use inks on all my paper craft projects. I get so much satisfaction from creating artwork for my cards, scrapbook pages and crafts. Always store your ink pads upside down. I use a rubber band around the ink pad to keep the lid firmly on. Always clean your stamps before changing colors to prevent the colors getting muddy. If you are refilling the ink pad, only use refill ink from the same manufacturer with the same exact color to get the best results

  • Using a layered stamp? Always use a lighter color for the base. Then add the darker colors as you build the layers.
  • Always put the lid back on your ink pad even with only a short break. The inbk will last longer
  • Store dye-based ink upside down and your ink will always be ready to use.
  • Always clean your stamps before you change color. Otherwise, you will contaminate other pads with colors that do not match.
  • Take your ink pad to the stamp rather than pressing the stamp into the pad. You will avoid over inking the stamp and creating a mess when you go to use it.
  • Check your stamp before you use it. Check for too much ink or no ink on parts of the stamp

Acrylic Blocks And Tools

Acrylic blocks are easy and inexpensive way to stamp

Acrylic blocks are easy and inexpensive way to stamp

Unlike rubber stamps, clear stamps are not mounted. They have a sticky base and they are made to adhere on acrylic blocks. You will need several sizes of acrylic blocks- many come in sets. The best acrylic blocks have marks on them so that you can stamp exactly where you want to place the image. Use an acrylic block that will hold the entire stamp. You will need to press firmly and evenly on the block to create an even image. before you stamp wipe any ink that has gone on the acrylic stamp, so it does not transfer on the paper. You can use baby wipes to clean your acrylic blocks or stamp cleaner. Wipe dry with a clean paper towel.

Tip For Using Acrylic Blocks

  • Remove your chosen photopolymer or acrylic stamp from the acetate sheet and place it onto your acrylic stamp block.
  • You will need an acrylic block larger than your image but not too much larger as it will be more difficult to handle. This is why it’s important to invest in a few different-sized acrylic blocks for your convenience.
  • Ink up your stamp using an ink color. To do this, place the acrylic stamping block (with the stamp attached to it) on a solid surface. It’s best to use a stamping mat or a crafting mat to ensure that your surface is smooth and clean.

Inking And Stamping Your Acrylic Block Mounted Stamp

There are a few things to consider when using an acrylic block to stamp an image.

  1. Take the ink pad to the stamp. Lay the acrylic block flat so that the stamp if facing you. Gently tap the ink pad over the stamp. Never press the ink pad too hard or tilt it from side to side when inking up your stamp.
  2. Pick up the acrylic block and position the inked image into place.
  3. Stamp the inked stamp image down and firmly press all parts of the image onto the cardstock. Again, never tilt your acrylic block from side to side, just press on it gently.
  4. Remove the acrylic stamp block to reveal your stamped image.

More Acrylic Block Ideas

Other Stamping Tools

Layered stamps have several images that add different areas of definition to the design. They are layered one over another, so a stamping tool is a neccessity for these types of stamps

The Misti (The Most Incredible Stamping Tool Invented)- This is a very popular tool for stamping. It comes in two sizes. The mini size has a stamping area of 6 by 4.7 inches. The original size has a stamping area of 6.5 by 8.5 inches. The largest Misti is the Memory version. The stamping area for this product is 12.5 by 12.5.The product has a hinged acrylic lid that holds the stamp in place. The base holds the paper with magnets that come with the platform. The nice thing about the Misti is that you can stamp the image over and over again. You can also stamp more than one image on the paper. It is an investment that you will get a lot of use from.

Stamping Platforms are tolls that will help you create images anywhere on a piece of paper. They come in different sizes, but they all function the same way. The platform is made from acrylic and has marks that guide you where to place the stamp. The feet have springs. So, you press down to create the image.

Coloring Your Stamped Images

This is how a stamped image should appear before it is colored

This is how a stamped image should appear before it is colored

If you were like me and loved coloring as a child, then you will really have a good time coloring your stamped images. There are so many options to color your stamped images. You really are only limited by your imagination. I use different techniques depending on my project and my mood. It's all up to you as an artist! Bring out your creativity! Give it a try!

No matter what you are using to color your stamped images, always start with the lighter color first and work into the darker color. Use three colors in the same color family for the most realistic results.

  1. Colored Pencils- the easiest tools to color stamped images. They color with a very soft look. Colors blend well. They are easy to use. Very little mess. All you may need is a pencil sharpener, an eraser and a blender pencil
  2. Watercolor Pencils-they work like colored pencils, but with water. You need a good strong paper to use these and some watercolor brushes. They are purchased in sets
  3. Water Colors-Yes, you can paint with watercolors. You do have to use a water proof ink like Stazon ink . Otherwise, your image will bleed. You need a very heavy or watercolor paper to use this medium.
  4. Markers- these are probably the most popular medium to color stamped images. They come in all kinds of media like alcohol inks, watercolors metallic and more.
  5. Reinkers-the Reinkers from your ink pads are a perfect way to color your flowers and other images. This is much like a watercolor technique.
  6. Your Ink Pads-your ink pads are another source of color for your projects. Dye inks actually are the perfect medium to add color to your inked images.

Stamping With Markers

There are so many markers available to you in all types of price ranges. You can opt from simple gel markers, gelatos, Copics and Spectrum Noirs. All of these markers can be used to color your stamped images. Some of them are even used to stamp your images. Purchase the best markers that you can afford. Start with the basic colors and then build your collection. While refillable markers initially cost more, in the long run, they are very good to your budget

Markers are a great alternative when you do not have the exact color of ink that you need. It gives you far more range than most of the stamp pads that you may have.

Remember to keep your markers from drying out always store them where there is no sun on them. Make sure to store them where it is neither too hot or cold.

You can get different styled nibs to make your stamping easier. For overall coverage of your stamp, you will want to use the largest nib on your marker

  • When in inking stamps with markers. always start with the lightest colors first. this will help you avoid contaminating the paler nibs with the darker ones
  • Use a blender pen to touch up any part of your image that has not stamped clearly.
  • If you're trying for a water colored effect, go for water-based markers. These will fade together slightly, creating a blurred water color effect.
  • If you're trying layer, or create a permanent effect on a variety of surfaces, go for alcohol and solvent based colors.
  • In addition to using water-based markers, spritzing your stamps lightly before inking them can help with the water colored effect. If you want a strong water color effect, take a small spray bottle filled with water. Spritz your stamps lightly before you get to work on inking them
  • Want a cute background, just stamp a sentiment all over the base of the card. You can do this in one color or use different colors. Makes a clean easy card.
  • Color your stamp with the brush tip of your marker. Use a swiping motion.
  • Multiple colors can make for a striking stamped image. Switch up colors as needed to create the desired effect
  • Work quickly so the ink stays wet. Marker can dry much faster than ink. Therefore, work as quickly as you can while still keeping steady. You want to make sure the marker ink remains wet so you can successfully transfer your image to a page
  • If you want a subtle look to a background, stamp an image from the same set as your main image in a close color to the background paper. Just make it slightly darker than the actual paper. It will continue the theme without taking away from the main image.

How To Ink A Stamp

Inking your stamps correctly will yield better stamping results

Inking your stamps correctly will yield better stamping results

You can use almost any wet colorant to ink a stamp. The most commonly used ones are ink pads and brush markers.

Always make sure that your stamp is clean and dry before using it

The best way to ink a wood mounted stamp is to set it flat with the rubber side up. If it an acrylic stamp, place in on an acrylic block and set it with the acrylic side up. Open the ink pad and dab the ink on the stamp. Make sure that all surfaces are covered. Never grind or rub the stamp on the pad or apply excessive pressure.

Smaller stamps can be pressed directly on the ink pad. They can be tapped into the ink Never rub the stamp across the pad..

When using brush markers, color directly on the raised surface with the side of the marker rather than the tip. That way you will avoid damaging the tip. If using more than one color, start with the lighter color first, blending into the darker shades. Brush markers containing dye ink dry quickly, so just before you stamp. "huff" on the stamp with a short burst of breath to re activate the ink.

If you want to see if the design is evenly inked, hold the stamp at an angle

Once you have applied the color, position the stamp gently over the paper in the area that you want to stamp. Press the ink stamped straight down onto the paper and allow to dry

How To Clean Stamps

Keeping you stamps clean will help you make your craft investment last for years. There are a few things to remember when cleaning your stamps. You can use a cellulose sponge to clean your stamps. The sponge can be dampened with water and/ or a little mild liquid soap. Rub the stamp across the sponge. Rinse and dry. Keep the damp sponge in a plastic container so that it handy whenever you need it. Make it a habit to clean your stamp after each use so that the ink does not set into the surface

  1. Using a spritz cleaner made specifically for stamps is a perfect choice to help you keep your stamps clean.
  2. There is a difference between a stamp being clean and stain free. Some inks, like memory ink will never come completely clean. Just clean the stamp as well as you can and don't worry about the stain that remains.
  3. Reds, yellows and oranges will usually clean easily. They can often be tapped away on a clean piece of paper.
  4. Don't soak your rubber stamps in water. It will loosen the adhesive that holds the stamp on the block.
  5. Baby wipes are ideal for cleaning stamps.They are a quick way to wipe off excess ink to that you can use another color.
  6. Most acrylic stamps can be cleaned in soapy dish detergent and water. Always avoid any cleaning material that has alcohol in it
  7. Make sure to clean your acrylic block when you clean your stamps
  8. There are special cloths that will clean acrylic stamps with just water

What kind of stamps are your favorites?

Bleach Stamping

Create a woodgrain look  with a bleach pen and a paint brush

Create a woodgrain look with a bleach pen and a paint brush

You do not even need a stamp pad for this technique. This technique however is best done on darker paper for the best results. All you do is dip your stamp into splash less or gel bleach and stamp it on your dark paper. You can watch the results happen before your eyes as the paper oxidizes. Make sure to wash your stamp right away in dish detergent and water after doing this technique. Be patient with this technique. It may take up to 10 minutes to dry.

Tips For Bleach Stamping

  • Always do this technique in a well ventilated room. It can get a little stinky
  • Keep your bleach in a glass jar rather than handling a jug
  • Use fresh bleach-You will not get good results if your bleach has been sitting around for a while.
  • Clean your stamps right away. Dab with a wet paper towel right after stamping or immerse the stamp in soapy water. You will minimize any damage from the bleach.
  • Wear old clothes or protect them
  • Protect your stamps. Ink up your stamp with Versa Mark ink and then stamp off to protect your stamp from the bleach.
  • Create a stamp pad by saturating a folded paper towel with bleach. Put it in a plastic stamp case or on a plastic plate.

Crayon Resist

Layered Stamps Create Beautiful Effects

You can create beautiful effects with very little experience in stamping

You can create beautiful effects with very little experience in stamping

Layered stamp sets are all the rage and rightfully so. In those sets you get several layers of the same image. You get a base and an outline stamp. Using a lighter color as the base and a darker color as the outline, you can create beautiful effects in very little time. The images almost appear to be hand drawn.

There are two or more stamps that add beautiful detail to your stamped images. You use ink pads in the same color family that build the color and details.

You can use different tones in the same tones in a color family. Or you can create a soft tone for the base and a darker tone for the outline. There are lots of options when it comes to stamp layering.

Repeated Sentiment Background

You can create a card just by using repeated sentiments. Great for masculine cards too

You can create a card just by using repeated sentiments. Great for masculine cards too

Generation Stamping

Generational stamping is a technique that all stampers should use. All you need is one stamp and one inkpad to create a custom design

Generational stamping is a technique that all stampers should use. All you need is one stamp and one inkpad to create a custom design

Generation stamping is when you use the same color ink with a stamp to create different shaded images without re inking. As you move through the generations the stamped image becomes lighter. This is a perfect way to get a varied background. You can also use the same color when you are layering stamps.

A first-generation image is one that is created when you ink your stamp and then press it to paper.

A second-generation image is created when, without re-inking after the first generation, you stamp on your paper again. (Take it further if you’re up for it with third-generation images!)

You can go all the way up to fourth generation

More Generation Stamping Ideas

Tone On Tone Stamping

This is another way to extend the use of your stamps. THus technique can be done on any darker paper to get the best results.


  • Dark-colored card stock
  • Versamark or any embossing ink
  • Acrylic block, Misting , or stamping platform
  • Stamp set- your choice
  • Clear embossing powder
  • Heat gun
  1. Ink up the image with the versamark or embossing ink
  2. Stamp on the colored card stock in the pattern or images you want
  3. Sprinkle the clear embossing powder over the images
  4. Heat the project with the heat gun until the embossing powder is heated through
  5. Allow the project to cool

Project tips:

  • Always use a long pair of tweezers to hold the project while you are heating it.
  • You can also use Versamark Clair that comes in colors. For these inks you will not need any embossing powders. Just let them air dry.

Faux Layering

Faux stamping adds more dimension and color to your projects

Faux stamping adds more dimension and color to your projects

Faux layering is another way to extend your stamp sets. This technique will only work with totally symmetrical stamps. A symmetrical stamp is the same outline on both sides. This gives you a layered or water colored type of image.


  • White cardstock
  • Acrylic block
  • Any symmetrical stamp
  • Dye ink in your choice of color
  1. Place the stamp on the acrylic block with the flat side up
  2. Ink the flat side
  3. Stamp the flat side on the paper
  4. Wipe the ink off the flat side of the stamp
  5. Turn the stamp over
  6. Ink the image side of the stamp
  7. Carefully stamp the image onto image you created with the flat side
  8. Allow the image to dry

More Faux Layering Ideas

Multi Colored Stamped Images

Get out those little inkpads for this technique. You can use any mini ink pads or dew drop ink pads that you have. You will need 3 to four colors of your choice for this technique;


  • White cardstock
  • Mini or Dew Drop ink pads in 3-4 colors
  • Acrylic block, stamp platform, or Misti
  1. Using one color at a time, ink the stamp and apply the edge of the pad to the stamp till you use up all the colors.
  2. Stamp the image and allow it to dry
  3. You apply the colors side to side or from the top down

More Stamping Techniques

There is no way that I could cover all the ways to stamp. So here are a few more ideas that You may enjoy learning


Storing Your Stamps

How you store your stamps is dependent on the amount of stamps that you own and the space that you have to store them. As your collection grows, it's helpful to store your stamps by category. Set up your categories as you think. You might have categories like holidays, birthday, nature, sayings.....use what's best for you !

Store them in boxes or drawers. I started with those decorative boxes that you can often buy at your local craft store. They are made for storing photos, but I have always used them for craft storage. You can often find them on sale for 6 for $10. Then I just take my label maker and label what's inside.

Right now, I have them in large drawers that were originally used for paper storage. I also keep one drawer for my dabbers and stamping tools, one for my acrylic blocks and one for stamping tool cleaning supplies. That way I can go to one location for all of my stamping supplies.

I have recently purchased a scrap rack. Now all my acrylic stamps will be in my rack by category.

Again depending on your space and your collection, you could also keep them in a large tool box, in plastic boxes and then in a bin, or in pizza boxes.

How To Catalog Your Stamps

No matter what your storage system is for your stamps, it is important for you to create a stamp catalog that you can keep somewhere close to your work area. Once you have our stamps organized, then making a catalog will help you know what you have and where that particular stamp is. That way you craft time will be a lot more fun because you will be able to coordinate your stamps for whatever project that you chose to make.

What You Need To Create Your Stamp Catalog

  • Ink
  • Your Stamps
  • A 3 Ring binder Or Some Binder Rings
  • A Permanent Marker

First step is to create an index of all the topics of stamps that you may have. For example you may have topics like holidays, or you may decide to list each holiday. It's up to you ! I like to type my list on my computer as a document. Then, I can always add to my index.

Now print each stamp on some cardstock -I like to use 8x10 pages that I can slip into a page protector. Number each stamp set. List on each page where the stamp is located and if it is a rubber or acrylic stamp. Place each page in its section.

You could also add an index of your inks to the same binder !

The alternative to a binder, would be to print each stamp on a index card, add the same information. Punch a whole in each card and use either ribbon or binder rings. This is a wonderful portable idea that can also be used when you shop

Themes To Use When Organizing Your Stamps

You can organize your stamps any way that suits you, but I like to keep it simple ! Keeping your groupings together and labeled makes it easy for you to find exactly what you need

  • Alphabets and numbers
  • Animals
  • Baby and youth
  • Botanical
  • Celebrations
  • Feminine
  • Floral
  • Food
  • Holidays
  • Masculine
  • Patterns and textures
  • People and faces
  • Plants
  • Seasons
  • Travel
  • Themes a-z

© 2014 Linda F Correa

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