Monday, September 14, 2015

Tutorial: Stamping with the Backs of Your Clear Stamps
We're still going strong with the STAMPtember celebrations over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog!  This week's theme is, "I love this technique!"  So whip out your favorite stampy-crafty techniques and show us what you've got!  For my "miss you" card, I used one of my favorite stamping techniques, which is to stamp with the BACK of your clear stamps to create unique background shapes.

I started with Avery Elle's Super stamp set, Memento Luxe and Colorbox inks (or your favorite ink that works well with clear stamps), and an acrylic block.  I stuck the skyline clear stamp on my acrylic block backwards so that the smooth/sticky side was facing me and the ridged side that you usually stamp with was stuck to the block.

Using Memento Luxe and Colorbox ink, I dabbed a few different colors onto the back of my stamp.

When the back of my stamp was covered with ink, I hit it with just a couple of quick water spritzes.

I stamped the image onto my pre-cut tag-shaped card (courtesy of the Mama Elephant Tags a Lot set).  Here's how it turned out:

Keep in mind that when you are stamping with the back of your clear stamp, the shape that you stamp will be the opposite of the "normal" stamped image.  So my skyline is not going to line up with the stamp itself.  I like the contrast in this case and when you do this technique with basic shapes like circles or squares, it doesn't matter if you stamp backwards.  The only time it might make a significant difference is if you have an arrow stamp pointing a certain way or if the stamp obviously has one clear direction and you don't want the background "shadow" to be opposite of that.

My next step is to stamp the image right-side up (using the stamp in the normal manner) on top of the background, which I dried with a heat tool.  I used Ranger Black Archival ink to stamp the top image.

You'll notice that the colors didn't stay as vibrant once I dried them with the heat tool, so another one of my favorite techniques is to "smudge" on Distress Ink in various spots to brighten the whole thing up.  I do this using artist sponges or make-up sponges.  I love how it gives some oomph to the colors!

I finished my card by adding the "You are" sentiment from Mama Elephant's Hustle set and added some Geotags to show the distance between the two people.

And are you proud of me for leaving the majority of the card WHITE?  I know- usually I feel the need to color every little micro-speck possible, so I really had to restrain myself this time.  But this technique is a good one and it's really allowed me to get more versatility from my stamps and to look at them in a while new way.

Here are the supplies I used, which you can find at Simon Says Stamp:

I can't wait to see some of your favorite stamping techniques!  Upload your geniusness to the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog for your chance to inspire a lot of people and to win a $50 Simon Says Stamp store voucher for yourself.  It's a win-win!


  1. Wow! What a brilliant idea - I am definitely giving this a try! I love this cheerful card! Chrisx

  2. Well, that's a new one on me... how cool! Very cute tag.
    Alison xx

  3. Fabulous card Andrea! I love the colours and whole design of this! I never saw this technique either! AWESOME :-)

    Lols x x x

  4. I did not know this technique. It's very interesting! thanks for having shared . Sorry for my English Google translator

  5. Gorgeous, Andrea! Love this technique for a really cool watercolored look! :)

    Simon Says Stamp!

  6. I forgot about this technique~thanks for the reminder!!! I love your skyline tag~

  7. Love the beautiful colors on the background, Andrea. Such a gorgeous card. :)

  8. beautiful card! love your technique! Your color choice is Always wonderful! Barbarayaya

  9. You are amazing! What a fab idea, and it is so beautiful!

  10. Clever Clever and beautiful! I love that idea of applying the color using the reverse and on this stamp the varying sizes and shapes of the color worked beautifully to create a shadowy background instead of clean lines. I too am scared of all the white space and have a hard time leaving it alone! Beautiful tag!

  11. I think the white space on your card really makes sense here because it symbolizes the "missing" part and how big it is. Does anyone else see a sailboat instead of a satellite dish on top of that skyscraper? I appreciate your demo and how you used the Mememto ink because it sticks better to the silicone stamps but then you make it pop with the Distress later.

  12. Such a great idea to stamp with the backside of clear stamps! Never would thought of that! Amazing tag! Hugs, Sandra

  13. An amazing tag and fabulous technique, Andrea and one I'm definitely going to try as it gives such a wonderful effect! Love it... :)

  14. Andrea, I am so honored by you. I look to you for inspiration and awesome posts. Your artwork is always stunning and and innovative. There are not enough adjectives to describe it. Thank you so much.c

  15. Brand new to your blog and "Stamping With Backs of Your Stamps" is where I started reading...what a great idea. Can't believe I have never heard of this before...great for you for sharing this with us. I've always been a believer of spreading thoughts and ideas on art techniques. Thanks! I'll be trying this one later tonight on my mixed media project.