Learning a new craft can seem like a big investment in time, education and materials. Then there’s rubber stamping. With the right planning it can be as quick and fun as an after school project and the result makes gifts distinctive and memorable. Getting started can be as simple as ordering a stamp with a phrase or your name. If you want to get advanced, learn about block printing with wood and twine. Here are 10 craft ideas to get you started.
1. GIFT TAGS
Personalized gift tags are always a hit. Have a customized one-inch rubber stamp made with your initials. Using heavy stock paper, cut two-inch squares and fold in half. Using a hole punch, make a hole in one end of the folded paper tag. Customize the inside of the tag with your custom stamp. Thread a string through the hole and make a loop. Now the tag is ready to b addressed and attached to a package.
2. TISSUE PAPER
Using plain tissue paper sheets, use your customized rubber stamp to personalize the paper. Spread a sheet of tissue paper flat and randomly stamp the paper with your name, initials, or your company logo to give your gift a special look when being unwrapped.
3. GREETING CARDS
A unique stamp can easily customize personal or company greeting cards. The same image can also be used on the envelope on the back flap. If you want to make customized cards at home, use plain greeting card stock and your own, distinct rubber stamp. Randomly stamp the card or, for the holidays, you can decorate the card by making a shape such as a tree with multiple stamp images. As an addition, take an unused wooden pencil eraser, dip the eraser in craft paint to add a contrasting background by dotting the paper.
4. COMPANY SWAG
You can create cost-effective company giveaways for trade shows by using your custom stamp on items such as tote bags, pencil erasers, eyeglass cleaning cloths, balloons, T-shirts and just about any other item you can lay flat and will absorb the ink.
5. PATTERNED FABRIC
By wrapping yarn or string around a wooden block, you can create a folksy art block stamp for a repeated print on paper or fabric. Once the string is secured with glue and dried, paint your sting with craft or fabric paint and stamp the paper or material. Allow to dry, then use your customized rubber stamp over the dried block pattern. Sometimes it's best to use different colors for each stamp.
To create a more detailed image, working with linocuts can yield impressive, professional results (though the craft definitely has a learning curve).
Taking a solid color fabric or wide paper ribbon and use a rubber logo stamp or a family name stamp to decorate the material to add some personalization to gift wrap. First, unroll the ribbon and lay it flat. Then stamp the image along the length of the ribbon and allow the ink to dry before adding it to a gift.
7. CUSTOMIZED JEANS
Kids and teens may enjoy detailing jeans with a customized potato and rubber stamps. Lay the jeans out flat. For the potato stamp, cut the vegetable in half and hollow out the center, leaving about a half-inch border. Using fabric paint, paint the rim of the potato and stamp randomly on the jeans. Then use the custom rubber stamp that has a name (or favorite image) with permanent ink, and stamp randomly on the jeans. Set the fabric paint as instructed on the bottle.
8. GOODIE BAGS
If you love to bake cookies or make candies to give as gifts, use your custom rubber stamp to decorate white paper bags where you can place your finished homemade goodies. Of course, use the appropriate ink colors for the relevant holidays.
Custom T-shirts are always fun gifts. Create a custom rubber stamps that reflect a saying you like, a personal sentiment, or a philosophy you would like to share. Use permanent ink and stamp away on a tee-shirt that is laid out flat on a hard, clean surface. It is best to use a darker contrasting ink color to a lighter colored shirt.
Teachers, one way to encourage students is to praise their efforts by using custom rubber stamps on their graded paperwork. It will make a difference as it shows positive reinforcement.
These are just a few ways rubber stamps can be used at home and at the office to make an individual statement.