How to Make a Stamp – Quick, Easy, and Cheap

Like most people I know, I have been trying to lessen the clutter in my home and studio. I admit, one of the categories of supplies that has been relegated to the "out" box is my stash of rubber stamps. Not because I don't like them, but because I find that I prefer to use my own art stamps.

stamping techniques
Julie Fei-Fan Balzer made this art stamp with craft foam and a
ballpoint pen.

I used to collect rubber stamps with sayings and detailed images. But I found that once I'd used an image a few times I got tired of it and, in the throes of creating, I found I preferred simpler, more geometric stamps. Plus, making your own stamps keeps your art original and unique, and it is just so much fun.

One of the easiest, fastest, and least expensive ways to create a stamp with your own imprint is to use craft foam and a ballpoint pen.

Here is how Julie Fei-Fan Balzer demonstrates this method of making foam stamps on her new Cloth Paper Scissors WorkshopTM video, "Stamp-Making Adventures: Carve, Cut & Print One-of-a-Kind Designs."

1. Take a piece of craft foam and cut it to the size you want (you can also keep the sheet whole and cut out the portion you want later).

2. Use a ballpoint pen to make marks in the foam, pressing hard enough to make an impression with the pen. You can draw geometric shapes, doodles, a representational drawing, or words, just be aware that the print will come out in reverse. Tip: Allow your design to go off the edge of the piece of foam.

stamping techniques
Some of Julie's easy handmade foam stamps.

3. Ink the stamp by pressing the pad onto the stamp, not the other way around. Julie likes to use Distress InkTM because you can manipulate the ink with water.

4. If desired, spritz the inked stamp with a mist of water.

5. Place your paper (Julie uses manila shipping tags) onto the stamp and press over the back of the paper.

6. Lift the paper and admire your brilliant artistry.

It's just that simple and fun. Julie demonstrates how to make a stamp with a variety of materials and tools and gives you her inside tips on stamping techniques in "Stamp Making Adventures."

Making your own stamps is an easy and creative way to use low-tech, inexpensive resources for unique results. You never have to worry about using the same old rubber stamp again.

P.S. Have you tried this technique? What tips do you have to share? Leave your comment below.


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