Ways & How

how to make rubber stamps

how to make rubber stamps

Art crafters young and old alike cannot deny the fact that a good custom rubber stamp could make the difference between a so-so greeting card or letter and one that is one-of-a-kind. Rubber stamps are very handy, add a unique and personal touch, and best of all, are fun to make. Stamping, which is a type of printmaking wherein you transfer ink from a carved surface to a piece of paper or cloth, has actually been around for centuries. People used it to easily duplicate images, letters, and words and to leave a personal mark on correspondence. Rubber is a good medium to use in making stamps because it is easy to carve images on, readily available, and the smooth surface allows for effective ink transfer. Today, stamps are available in all types and sizes commercially, but learning how to make rubber stamps allows you to create your own custom stamp mark. Here are a few easy steps:

  1. Choose the size and design. Rubber stamps usually come in small sizes, so for the rubber, you can work with either erasers or thick rubber bands.



    You can use any design, whether itÂ’s a figure, letter, word, or a combination of those. You just need to decide on the size and design first so you can get the right materials for it. Do not make your design too intricate so you can get a good, clear impression, and you will not have too much difficulty in carving, especially if you are doing this for the first time.

  2. After deciding on your design, prepare all the materials you need. First, choose the rubber that best matches your design. If you want to use erasers, you can choose from either green rubber, white vinyl, or hard red rubber erasers. Some also want to use vinyl or Staedtler-Mars because they make clean marks. You can experiment and compare what suits your design the best. Rubber bands are good for letter stamps or smaller designs because they are too thick to carry more detailed impressions. You also need tracing paper, a lead pencil, a carving knife, a block of wood or a piece of cardboard, an ink pad, and glue.

  3. Create the stencil. Trace your design on tracing paper with a lead pencil. If you choose to use a letter design, decide whether you want it as an outline or filled out and trace accordingly. Make sure the filled out part is solid before you transfer the design on the rubber. Put the design face down on the rubber and then evenly rub it on to transfer the design. Make sure the image on the rubber is clear.

  4. Carve the design into the rubber. Make sure that you cut out the part that you did not fill out. It is best to cut away from the design and to do to it slowly and carefully so you do not cut into the design.

  5. Glue the carved rubber on either a block of wood or piece of cardboard for backing, especially if your rubber is thin.

  6. Lastly, choose an ink pad of your preferred color, press your stamp on it, and try it out. You might have to carve a bit here and there to adjust your design and to correct flaws.

When learning how to make rubber stamps, remember that imagination is your only limitation, so go ahead and try any design! With creativity, a bit of patience, and diligence, you can create crafty stamp designs that are not only fun to make but useful too.

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