DIY Decorative Foam Stamps

DIY Foam Stamp2

Did you hear a really loud scream today?  A really high pitched squeal?  Actually two of them?  It was me!  The first one was because of this:

IMAG00478

If you can’t tell, it’s a SnAkE!!!  A really big snake!  That sidewalk there is 4 feet wide.  Ugggggg……

My husband said that it is a “good” snake.  No such thing!

IMAG00479

Gives me the chills just to see a pic of it!  That was my first squeal and THIS was my second

IMAG00477

 

I made a foam rubber stamp!  All by myself!  From scratch!  Squeal!  Want to know the best part?  It wasn’t that hard to do.  YOU can totally do this, too.

Here is what you will need:

  • Two paper copies of the design that you want to make into a stamp.  You can even just type out a name, a word or a phrase like, “Happy Birthday!” in Word.
  • Scissors
  • A sheet of craft foam.  I bought this blue sheet at Walmart and it is quite thin.  I’m sure that Michaels or Joann’s or any craft supply store carries thicker foam sheets.
  • Spray adhesive
  • Something to use as a sturdy stamp base.  I just cut a piece of wood to size.
  • Baby powder (you’ll see in a minute)
  • An ink pad

I got the idea after watching this awesome YouTube tutorial.

First of all I chose the letter A in the Damask Dings font (dingbat) and, in Word resized it to the size that I wanted.  I made two copies of this…hang on and you’ll see why.

IMAG00473

My printer is out of toner so I had to color in the lines a bit so you can see the image.  See it?  Good.  Next I roughly cut around my design (only one of the copies), sprayed adhesive on the back and immediately stuck it on the foam board.

IMAG00474

At this point I cut around my printed design, and here is where my second copy came into play:  As I cut each piece out, I placed it on top of the copy (paper side up) so my placement would be exactly like the original.  I ended up using a hole punch to cut out the smaller circles.  I’m lazy you know!  Actually it was to get perfect little circles.

IMAG00475

Next, I cut a piece of foam a bit bigger than the size of the design, sprayed some adhesive to cover the surface and then layed it down, sticky side down, on top of the image.  This is how you capture the design in place.  If it looks a bit wonky, you have a minute or so to adjust the pieces.

Now the foam backer is all sticky, what to do, what to do?  Baby powder, of course!  Sprinkle some on the exposed sticky parts, rub it in with your finger, then gently wipe the powder off:

Smooth as a baby’s bottom.

Before mounting the stamp, I inked it up and then stamped directly on the wood.  After letting it dry for a minute I mounted the foam on the side opposite of the stamped image.  This is where it would have been nice to have better quality foam.  With this thin foam I just have to be very careful when inking.  Kind of messed up the wood block, but it’s not the end of the world.   As you can see, my stamp works just fine.

IMAG00483

Made by ME!  Squeal!  (Did you hear that?!)  Since there is a layer of paper sandwiched in there, I wouldn’t recommend washing the stamp under running water.  To clean it, just stamp over and over on a damp paper towel until the color is gone.

I have a couple of really great ideas for using foam stamps.  I promise to share them soon!

 

********* Linking up to these awesome parties!*********

Advertisements

Fun With Fonts: I’m Batty For Dingbats

DingbatCheatSheet

If you are a fan of fonts, raise your hand.  I love fonts!  Love, LoVe, LOVE fonts.  There is nothing like the thrill of going online, looking for, and downloading free fonts.  It is like going shopping for stuff that you actually get to keep, and not paying a thing for it.  Nothing.  Nil.  Nada.  Zero.  Zilch.  Have I made my point?

There are lots of sites out there that have free fonts that you can download.  Some that I have used and really like are:

1001 Free Fonts

Dafont

KevinandAmanda.com

Fontspace

There are lots of sites out there that have free fonts that you can download, but let me just add a disclaimer here, I am not a computer expert.  Trust me, I wish I was.  My teenaged boys (aka “computer geniuses”) have all grown up and flown the coop, so I pretty much just “wing it” now.  See what I did there… two bird metaphors in one sentence.   An-y-way, I have heard that not all free font sites out there are reputable so I Googled the subject and found this helpful article,  “The Top 10 Places to Find Free Fonts”.  The article has lots of good information if you are new to the font downloading scene, including how to download them onto your computer.   With all of the thousands of fonts out there, why would anyone settle for Comic Sans, Calibri, or Tehama?

Now to the Dingbats (finally, right?).   What in the world IS a dingbat? According to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary:

ding·bat

noun \ˈdiŋ-ˌbat\

: a stupid or crazy person

They even give an example of how to use the word in a sentence: ” I told you it wouldn’t work, you dingbat!”

But that is NOT what I am talking about.  Dingbat is also defined as ” a typographical symbol or ornament (as *, ¶, or X)”.  Basically, if you have dingbats, you can type a letter or number and a symbol or picture comes up instead of the letter/number that you typed.  You can go to these same free font sites and find decorative dingbats to download.

The problem is that you never know what symbol/ornament each keyboard key makes until you actually push that key.  It can be pretty frustrating and time consuming.  I finally decided to make a printable list of all of my dingbats and include a key that allows me to see at a glance, first of all what “dings” I have, and secondly, how to get each one.  That mountain of work is now complete and right here, at YOUR fingertips.  Aren’t you lucky to be my friend?

DingBat pdf    Go ahead, click on the DingBat link!  I’ll wait…….

Now YOU can download these dingbats cheat sheets, print out the pages and ding to your heart’s content.

Here are some examples from the pdf:

Screenshot_2014-10-16-14-37-13Screenshot_2014-10-16-14-49-11

Screenshot_2014-10-16-14-52-11Screenshot_2014-10-16-15-01-55

 

Isn’t that awesome?  Granted, this list only includes the dingbats that I have on my computer right now, but I’m thinking it is time to go “shopping” for some more free dingbats.

Now, it is YOUR turn to go “batty” with dingbats!