Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks: Ink Pads

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If you are like me, you love all of these new shows that end with the participants having a great new look on the outside. On the inside, they are the same person, but on the outside they have made a transformation from ugly duckling to beautiful swan.

How does this relate to stamping? Well, let’s talk about our stamp pads. When we first get them they are clean, well inked and beautiful for all to see. Something nice to look at. As the days go by we figure out the practicality of our stamp pads. Let’s focus on Basic Black because he is the one that takes a beating on a daily basis.

When you arrive at a workshop you have all of your supplies ready to go. You have neatly cut little piles of paper, a clean work area, beautiful stamps and your stamp pads. Those stamp pads that you use and abuse, day after day.

Have you taken a good look at your stamp pads lately? I know when I sat down to write this, I would have told you that there was nothing wrong with my stamp pads. I had just used them a day or two before at a party. Sure my Basic Black had a few stains on the case, but it wasn’t “that bad” or was it? I took “before the makeover” and “after the makeover” photos of my stamp pad. Now, I’m sure some of you are laughing at the thought of me photographing my stamp pad but, the “before” and “after” photos are the most enjoyable part of the makeover.

Look at your Basic Black pad. I know, I know, you see it everyday. Really look at it. How many stains do you have on the top? Do you have some stray little threads sticking out the sides. Did you spill ink over the side the last time you reinked it? How about the inside of the lid, how much ink is built up there? If it were not your own pad, would you think twice before picking it up?

Most colors clean up easily with a paper towel and a bottle of Stampin’ Mist.  For the black, I got what I could with the Stampin’ Mist and then I moved on the kitchen to use the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. If you don’t have one of those things, you should get one. It does wonders on cleaning up stamp pad cases, not to mention stained stamps.

Now that the case is clean, how is the pad “working” Do you ever find yourself “fighting” with your stamp and stamp pad to get a really good impression? Maybe it’s time to reink. It is so simple, and yet so easy to forget. You won’t notice it with a line art stamp, but when it comes to the stems from Spring Garden or the circle from Little Shapes, you start to realize that you really need to reink.

Have you ever reinked your pads? Don’t worry if you haven’t , the process is simple and painless. For the classic pads, I usually start in the middle of the pad, squeezing out the ink as I draw lines on the pad, back and forth. In the areas where the ink is absorbed very quickly you need to keep applying more ink to those areas until it sinks in much slower. I usually have to add a lot less ink to the corners because I rarely ink my stamps from the corners of the pads, but I do touch them up a bit.

When you are finished reinking, take a moment to wipe all of the extra ink off from around the edges and lid of your pads. A few minutes of cleaning and reinking will guarantee that your guests have a positive first impression of our products.

And finally, make sure you store the stamp pads flat (never on their ends). If you do not have the boxes that the stamp pads come in (by color family) find an organizational tool that allows you to store all of your pads flat. I use a case that I got in the hardware section of a local department store. When you go out to look for something, take a few stamp pads with you.

 

Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks: Organization

Did you know, on the bottom of each stamp pad is a sticker in four different languages stating the color of each stamp pad?

IMG_20170420_192740I put one on the front edge of my stamp pad lid.  This tells me the color name while it is stored in my color cady.

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I then cut the ends off of a second label and place them on the side lid near the pad.  The reason I do this is so that when I am using multiple stamp pads I can quick see what color I am using.  Many of our stamp pads look the same while open.

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Annual Catalog 2016 - 2017 · Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks: Organization

All crafters want a sneak peak into other crafters spaces.  I am in the process of reworking my studio to make it more functional for classes, open crafting time and well lets be honest just for myself!

I love to use embossing folders – it gives such a great look and adds such a wow factor to my projects.  My embossing folders are not store in any special way.

I do use my super handy personal labeler (it’s so old!) and add the name of the folder on the front of the embossing folder.  I do this one for me – it let’s me flip through quickly to find a specific name.  I will admit they are not perfectly alphabetized, but close.

You might notice a little yellow dot on some of the folders.  Really, its for me.  It’s a quick way that I document when a folder, punch, die or stamp set is retired.

Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks: Organization

I was recent asked about some of my storage solutions for my studio.  Although I am in the middle of revamping several of my own storage solutions and studio design, I’ll share a few of my storage solutions.

I don’t have a good storage solution for my cardstock.  It’s because of the way that my current cabinets are designed.  However, based on this; the way I store my cardstock works well.

I picked up these file boxes at Wal-Mart or Staples.  I currently use three of them to hold my cardstock.  I have each color placed in a file folder and labeled with an actual sample of the paper.  I prefer to do it this way so that I can see the actual color – there is no guessing!

I also have two color families per box.  The third box is where I house my In-Colors and specialty paper (such as watercolor paper, glossy paper, vellum).  On the outside of the box I just printed out a quick list in order of my paper and slapped it on the front.  It gives me a quick reference to see what is in each box or for my customers to easily access paper if needed.