Saturday, January 24, 2015

Tutorials: Stamp Revamp

Happy weekend, all!  I found myself with a few spare minutes this afternoon...well...let's be honest; I found those spare minutes because I avoided cleaning the kitchen.  Be that as it may, I decided to do a "stamp revamp."  What and why is a stamp revamp?  It's when you destroy/alter a stamp so that you can use it in a different way (that's my definition anyway).

Here's a tag I made and I'll show you the steps I took to revamp the stamp I used for the background.

You know I love 100 Proof Press stamps and they have a great stamp called Typing Keys.  I adore those little circular keys and like how half are solid while the others are outlines.  Here's a close-up of the stamped image:

While I really like this stamp, I had a vision of using these keys in a scattered pattern instead of a linear one.  I had to make a dire decision!  Do I leave the stamp or revamp?  I decided to revamp...that is, change it entirely.  Is revamping scary?  Yes.  Is it always successful?  No.  Can it result in total failure and the destruction of a perfectly fine and innocent stamp?  Yes.  Been there.  But I decided to go for it anyway.

The Typing Keys stamp I had was on cling film (though I recommend buying it unmounted if you're wanting to change it up), so I started by finding a junky wooden block that would serve as the base for my "new" stamp.  Your wood can come from hardware stores, or from peeling off the rubber from another wooden stamp you already own and don't use anymore.  I've even used Jenga blocks from time to time.  Once you have your base ready, (and this is where you have to be courageous), you start cutting up the stamp you want to revamp.

I cut it in half first, then started cutting out the individual circle letters.  You'll notice they don't have to be precise cuts.

Once my circles were cut, I peeled off the gray cling film and stuck the circles onto my wooden block.  There was enough adhesive left from the cling film that I didn't have to add anything else.

Now my "revamped stamp" is ready to go!  I hit it with Ranger Jet Black archival ink and here's the new image I made:

I had such fun that I made a second stamp with a different pattern of circles.  And the good news is that I used so few circles total, that I could still use what was left of my original Typing Keys stamp if I do want that linear look in the future.

I had fun with this project and like how my "scattered" keys turned out.  I used them on the background of this tag, then watercolored around them.  I added some scribbles with Sharpie and finished it off with a Prima rose and some "love" Washi tape from Hampton Arts.

It takes courage to take scissors to your stamps and I can't say that I recommend it as a general practice, but it is a worthwhile experiment to try if you need an excuse to not be cleaning your kitchen!