Tuesday, October 8, 2013

How I Store my Rubber Stamps

I have a LOT of rubber stamps.  I'm pretty sure my husband will arrange and intervention at some point.   I can justify my amount of stamps because everyone I know who stamps owns WAY MORE stamps than I do.  I know I have a problem developing when I sneak down to my crafting area and cut my sheets of stamps before Mick notices.  LOL.

I love cling mount.  It offers a great impression and stores well. However, cling mount gets way too expensive when you own the amount of stamps that I do.  Also, if you do any type of mixed-media art that requires frequent washing and wetting of your stamps, the cling not only loses its ability to cling, but sometimes the cling can start to disintegrate.

My solution, Aleene's Tack-it Over & Over glue.  Below is the process I go through to make my stamps sticky and store them easily.  Without the cling mount, one can store twice as many stamps in the same amount of space.  It just makes sense.

  • Do the happy dance when stamps arrive in the mail. Stick my tongue out at neighbors who look at me as though I'm crazy.  I am crazy.  My medications will be testimony for that, but one shouldn't treat a crazy lady like she is crazy.  One should run over to the mailbox and do the happy dance with said lady. *Please note this is my personal step and you may skip this part if you wish.  It is okay to have dignity that I lack as long as you don't rub it in my face or make me behave :)
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  • Most stamp sets come with a watermarked cover sheet that depicts the images on the stamp sheet.  I scan this, reverse the image and print.  You will see why in a moment.  

  • I put these  sheets together.  If the papers are too lightweight, I will add some heavy card to the center and then I laminate the papers together.  Of course the way the images should look when stamped is the front side and the reversed images are on the back side.
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  • After the papers are properly laminated, I punch holes on the left side of the front page.  Doing this enables me to store my stamps in a three-ringed binder.  I can view the images on the front and I flip the page and the reversed images fit the unmounted stamps perfectly. 
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  • I buy stamps from the Smeared Ink Rubber Club as they offer super thick, deeply etched sheets of 8.5" x 11" unmounted red rubber stamps. They carry the edgier stamps that I like.  The rubber club carries some of Rick St. Dennis' darker stamps which are sold exclusively through Smeared Ink's Rubber club in the "Past Offerings" area. Images in the past offerings section can be purchased at any time regardless of the stamp set of the month being offered.  Any NEW sets RSD makes will be a featured set upon release. *Please note that while I fully endorse Smeared Ink stamps and Rick St. Dennis stamps I am not forcing you to buy them.  The medication helps me with this as I really would love to make  encourage the entire stamping community to buy stamps from both companies. You may use this stamp mounting technique with any rubber stamp of your liking.
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  • Since I ranted and raved about the quality of the stamps purchased through the Rubber Club, I feel I must warn you that these sets are thicker than your normal stamps. I highly recommend Tonic scissors for cutting through these bad boys.  I have bad arthritis and my hands tremble from time to time, but the Tonic scissors cut through the rubber super easily!  I also like to cut my stamps as close to the edge as possible and these scissors make it possible for me to cut the way I like.
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  • As you can see below, I have my stamp sets cut and my table prepped with a plastic garbage bag to make clean-up easier.  Next, I turn my stamps upside down so I can paint the backs of the stamps with Aleene's Tack-it Over & Over glue.

  • Add a very thin layer of glue and repeat with another thin coat when dry rather than painting one thick globby mess. I usually apply 2-3 coats of glue, allowing proper drying time in between coats.

  • The amount of glue I added above turned out to be a little too much and I was able to use the excess to paint the stamps that didn't already have glue on them.  I ended up using 3 coats of glue on the stamps.

  • When the glue is dry it will be clear, shiny and tacky to the touch.  At this point you can either adhere them to the backside of your laminated paper with the stamped images or you can begin to play.  
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  • When I use stamps mounted in this way I always place my paper on top of a sheet of fun foam or a mouse pad as the extra cushion allows for a cleaner stamped image.  Since the glue is designed to be applied to an object that will be placed on and peeled off several times, you can use your stamps again and again and they will continue to stick to your stamp block and their laminated home.  
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  • If the tackiness ever goes away or you have an incident where you drop your stamp in a pile of glitter (don't laugh, it happens), just wash or peel the glue off the back of the stamp and apply new layers of Aleene's Tack-it glue.  The glue is inexpensive and a little goes a long way.  I have super deep binders and I think I'm on my 5th one stuffed with rubber and I have barely put a dent in my glue bottle.  I have at least 75% of the bottle left, if not more.

  • Above you can see my Voodoo set snugged in tightly for bed.  The images will get plenty of use later :)  I purposely photographed my open binder in an upright position so you can see the strength of the bond.  I do hope my ramblings were helpful or at the very least amusing. Three more stamp sets just arrived so you know what I will be doing tonight ;)

~ Lady Brayton ~


  1. I love the idea of having them in a binder. Very cool.:)

  2. Great idea and very useful. Thanks x

  3. Thanks so much, that helps me out. I also do a happy dance when the post arrives with my stamp order but it's okay. My neighbours already know I'm nuts.

  4. Love that idea! Especially of cutting the stamps with those scissors... I usually left rubber around the edge and end up with marks on my paper!!! I know know better!

  5. Great info! Thanks. I have been hiding stamps for years.

  6. Oh my Gosh you are the most inspirational awesome crazy dancing lady in the world..however if I lived by you then you neighborhood would have two crazy ladies although I no longer have 22 cats as I did five years ago bahahahaha I would still dance with you at the mail box..let the world stare.
    Thank you for this. I really have been baffled with how to do something with them..I like you just adore my stamps..this is brilliant..loads and loads of love and hugs
    susan s