Blast From the Past: Background Stamping

Blast From the Past: Background Stamping

Way back in the dawn of time (or 2007 as the case may be) I had a little blog on blogger called The Dragon’s Den. On it I talked about whatever struck my fancy, whether it was stamping, or family life, or how much I loved LOAD. It now has its very own domain name, but it’s purely for personal thoughts now. Some of the old posts have some fun information though, and I thought I’d share one of the oldies with you now:

Today I’ve got a simple project you can do with stamps. This will work with any stamp. I’m using a very architectural stamp, but you could use an animal stamp if you’ve gone zoo crazy, or a Christmas stamp if you’re putting together holiday cards, or a ball stamp if you’ve got a kid whose second word was ball. You’ve got the idea.

A word about stamp pads

There are a lot of different inks. But when it comes to putting ink on your stamp there’s only one thing you need to know: is it a felt/cloth pad or a foam pad?100_1861

If it’s a felt pad like the one on the left, you bring the stamp to the pad and tap it gently on the pad, then give it a little twist before lifting it off the pad. If it’s a foam pad like the one on the right, you turn your stamp upside down, and gently tap your pad on the stamp. No twisting! You can rip or separate the pad from it’s case if you aren’t gentle. If you follow these instructions, you can have stamp pads for years! They will need re-inking eventually, but that’s another easy thing to do. How to tell if a stamp pad is felt or foam? Get your fingers dirty! A felt pad feels like a piece of canvas, and a foam pad feels like, well, foam.


The Technique

We are going to make a background. I used this technique to make a card and a scrapbook page, but there are lots of other things you can do with this idea–even use paint and you have a home decor treatment that looks like wallpaper, without the need to scrape and peel in ten years when you decide you must have been crazy to do that. First you need to choose a stamp. Base this on what your end project is going to be. I knew I was going to be doing something with my husband in it, so I chose a stamp that could be considered masculine. (Maybe.) This one is from a The Angel Company set. (I miss TAC! They are now out of business.) Then I chose three colors–2 colors close in hue, and then an accent color. I used Versamagic chalk inks in Niagara Mist, Hint of Pesto, and Night Sky.

Start with the lighter of the two colors close in hue, and stamp in a staggered pattern, leaving room between images for the image in the darker color. If you aren’t comfortable with eyeballing it, stamp the image on a post it note, with as much of the image on the side with the sticky strip as possible. Cut close to the image, and you’ve got a repositionable place holder that you can use to help space your images. In StamperSpeak, it’s called a mask, and it’s a very useful trick for layering images, and creating scenes.

After you’ve filled the page with the lighter color, choose where you want your accent spot to be, and stamp the image once with the accent color. Then fill in all the empty spots with the darker background color. Don’t forget to go off the edge of your page. This will ground your background, and it won’t look like it’s just floating there, waiting for you to finish it.

I used it for a page about my husband on his birthday two years ago. (Now seven years ago! Wait, seven? Wow!)


And a little detail for you:


So are you ready to make your own background? Show me what you’ve got!


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