Good morning Buttoneers! The bank holiday really threw me into a right old pickle this week! There is so much going on with moving and trying to finish my ’27 before 27′ blog challenge before the move (which happens to be the day after my birthday! eeep!) that I got into a real muddle and worked really hard to get my brooch done for Tuesday thinking today would be my ‘Photo-a-Day’ round up post. Well, it’s not the end of the month quite yet is it!? Crikey! I think I may have to get my blog editorial calendar into shape when I take a break! (More on that coming soon)
So, this post has been in the back of mind for a while now and there is no time like the present! Also, it gave me a day playing around with stamps and ink and getting all messy (in a clean-up straight away afterwards kind of way – you know what I’m like!) Remember when I hand carved these and this chevron arrow and ‘hello’ word stamp?
So, without further ado…Here is the result of my hand-carving street-scape stamp adventure!
First of all I grabbed the giant eraser and drew out my design. I made sure that the lines were all double lines wherever necessary so that I knew to leave them and not cut them. It’s all about working out where you want to ink to sit and getting rid of the rest!
I grabbed the craft knife and started to cut lines around all of the edges of my pencil drawn lines. I didn’t start removing the unwanted eraser until I had done this as it creates tracks for the carving tool to follow. This also allows me to keep a smoother line and be more intricate so I don’t cut into the bits I want to keep.
I then started to carefully scoop out the unwanted eraser with the carving tool bit by bit.
I also found that some larger areas could be sliced off with the craft knife. I always take away about 5-10mm, this way I know it won’t get covered in ink and print unwanted bits onto the paper.
When carving stamps, I try to forget about the image I am carving and focus on the shapes I need to eliminate. Breaking it all down into shapes in my mind as I go along makes it a lot simpler and I find I don’t over think it too much and mess up!
I took me a while but I got there in the end. It’s actually really therapeutic carving away. You kind of get immersed into the lines and shapes and forget about everything else!
It’s not the prettiest thing in the world but as long as it stamps okay then the stamped image is more important. The stamp itself is just the tool so the perfectionist in me doesn’t get too stressed at the grooves and cuts all over the place!
On goes the ink. I find that if I dab the ink on to the stamp rather than the stamp to the ink I get the ink exactly where I want it. It also stops the stamp squishing down onto the lower level and getting all inky over the parts I don’t want to print. I use all kinds of inks on my handmade stamps. My favourites are the ones in the inventory photograph at the top. I love the American Crafts archival pigment ink pad in ‘Taffy’ which is a gorgeous cerise pink colour. I love how it is acid-free, fade proof and that you get a really vibrant block colour when you stamp onto paper with a relatively quick drying time for a pigment ink. I also love the VersaMagic fast drying chalk inks (in the raindrop shaped pots) Being a chalk ink they leave a lovely matt chalky finish which leaves the colour looking super pretty. The one below is called ‘Night Sky’.
And Voilà! I love the final print so much! It reminds me of a seaside town with the sun shining and the seagulls flying around. I can almost imagine all of the little stamp people who live in the little stamp houses!
I got a bit excited and made another one! When I stamped it realised I would have two suns if stamped together as a long street so didn’t ink the second sun the second time around. I love my little imagined street and already have big plans for stamping some wall art and maybe even some pretties for my Etsy shop once it’s up and running!
So, what did I do with all of that wasted eraser rubbish that I carved off the block, I hear you ask!?
I dipped them in the coloured inks and stamped away! I love the really random shapes that appeared and the miss-match of prints that they produced. I really like how they didn’t all stamp down fully and left a partial print. It looks like confetti!
I am so obsessed with carving rubber stamps, I will stop for a while and as soon as I make another it starts all over again. I love that I can create something really unique and bespoke to me at only the cost of the eraser now that I have the tools. It is super relaxing too and I am sure I will be making a lot more in the future so keep an eye out. Of course, I will share them on here or on Instagram!
What would you carve in to a stamp if you could create anything? What colours would you use? Do you have any favourite ink pads you would recommend? I would love to hear all about it!
Meet me for a chat with a cup of tea in the comments below. I’ll click the kettle on! Have a fabulous weekend and I will catch you on the other side with my actual May ‘Photo-a-Day’ round-up!