Stamping for Beginners = S.I.P. part 1

Welcome to my 3-part series for beginner stampers.  Stamping basics can be boiled down to the Acronym S.I.P. which stands for Stamps, Ink, Paper.

Today I am giving you S.I.P. Part 1 So let’s talk about STAMPS.

Most people are familiar with stamps that have been used in offices for years, including stamps that say “COPY” or “PAST DUE”. Another type of stamp that is familiar is a carved rubber image that is mounted on a wood block and used to stamp a personalized name, address or other creative image. These common stamps are used with ink pads (often black or red) or can be bought as self-inking stamps. Of course, there are also postage stamps, but that’s a different type of stamp entirely.

The stamps themselves, and the creative use of them have evolved dramatically over the last 30 years. I am going to spend time introducing you to the 2 most commonly used types of stamps today which are made out of different materials but are used quite similarly.

 A Cling Stamp is manufactured from quality red rubber and has a cushiony layer attached to it. The stamps themselves come with super-tacky backing pieces which are attached to the stamps just like stickers. This tacky back-side is the side that grips onto a clear, acrylic block. The block is the easy-to-hold part that you hold when you are using the stamp. The brilliance of this system is that the cling stamps and acrylic blocks are interchangeable and a single block can accommodate a variety of stamps in many sizes.  When using a Cling Stamp, mounted to a block, there is no other accessory that is needed in order to stamp your image. The cushiony layer provides just enough “give” that allows the stamp to come in good contact with the paper leaving behind a nice, clean, crisp image.  To remove a Cling Stamp from the block, it very important to follow these simple steps so that the stamp itself does not tear and become ruined.  First, work from a corner or edge of the image itself.  Loosen the stamp, using your fingernail, to gently begin to pry it away from the block.  Once you have it started, it will easily peel off the block.  It is important not to pull or force the stamp off the block. Doing this will almost definitely tear the backing sticker and may damage the actual stamp itself.

A Photopolymer Stamp (aka Clear stamp) is manufactured from a photopolymer material rather than red rubber.  The wonderful element of clear stamps is that they are very flexible and clear!  You can see through them and this aids tremendously in placement of the image.  A photopolymer stamp is also pressed onto an acrylic block for use of the stamp.  One thing that is missing from a photopolymer stamp is the cushiony layer.  Often this does not affect the outcome of the stamped image. But depending on the stamp (and the user) it can leave either a partial image or one that is not very crisp. To easily remedy this, an inexpensive  Stampin’ Pierce mat can be placed under your paper when you are going to stamp. This will allow the necessary “give” that will produce a crisp, clear image

Regardless of which type of stamp you will be using, you need at least one acrylic block in order to get started.  Any size block is fine as long as it accommodates the size stamp you’ve chosen.  You can use a larger block than necessary for the stamp, but not a smaller one obviously.  Eventually it is very convenient to have a few blocks, in multiple sizes in order to allow your fastest and best stamping experience.  A good size to start with is a   D Block or an E Block  From there, I would add blocks in this order: C Block, H Block, B Block  The smallest size (A) and other sizes (F, G and I) can be added as needed when your collection grows or a particular stamp requires those sizes.  If you are able, you can purchase a whole Set of acrylic blocks.  By doing it this way, you save 10% over purchasing them individually.

Next, I’d like to tell you about cleaning your stamps.  Whether you use photopolymer or Cling stamps, you will need to clean the ink off the images before switching to a different color of ink.  You will also need to clean your stamps at the end of your stamping session so that you always put clean stamps away that are ready to go the next time. Never use harsh chemicals or solvents to clean the ink off your stamps. In truth, you only need plain water to clean your stamps.  So an old, damp microfiber cloth, towel (lint-free) or rag will do just fine.  But there are some inexpensive accessories that make the experience SO much better.

Stampin’ Scrub

A Stampin Scrub is a reusable cleaning scrub pad with plush black fibers that really get into the grooves of the stamps. 

Simply Shammy

A Simply Shammy is a reusable, thick shammy that cleans stamps very effectively with no lint and no chemicals. My favorite is the Simply Shammy as it cleans even in the narrowest grooves and the ink does not transfer to other stamps or to my hands.  Some stampers prefer baby wipes (alcohol-free) but I find them not very cost effective, and the ink easily transfers off the wipe back onto your hands causing a real mess and potential transfer of ink from your fingers back onto your project.

Storing your stamps is easy. You store them inside the cases that they come in. These DVD-size cases are easy to store upright like books on a shelf, or inside a drawer. It’s probably best to store them away from extreme heat/cold and out of constant direct sunlight.  I’ve kept some stamps in my garage without any problem.  But living in Southern California, the climate is mild and I don’t worry about extreme temperatures.  The majority of my prized stamp collection is always kept indoors in my stamp studio – right within easy reach.

If you happen to have some older-style of stamps that are red rubber, mounted on wood blocks, you’ll use them just like the Cling stamps.  No mat will be necessary. And cleaning those stamps is the same as I’ve already described.  These may a little harder to store, as they may or may not have a case to live in.  And the size of these stamps makes them a bit harder to store easily.

In closing, here are a few stamp sets, of each type, that I would suggest as good sets to start with if you just don’t know where to begin.

Check back soon to see Part 2 of S.I.P where I will cover the topic of Ink!!

Sneak Peek of Stamp Club projects

Hello! *Stamp Club begins this week for our 2021 term. I’m really looking forward to seeing all the members and super excited to stamp with you!

This week we will be making 3 projects. This adorable treat box features a new stamp set in the January – June mini catalog, called Sweet Strawberry. Also used is the darling Designer Series Paper called Berry Delightful. The DSP and a coordinating stamp set, called Berry Blessings can be FREE with a minimum purchase during Sale-A-Bration. You’ll go bananas (or berries!) for how well the 2 stamp sets, the punch and the DSP work together!!

The second project is a card using the stamp set Quite Curvy and the Curvy Dies. These curvy dies can seem a bit intimidating at first, so you’ll be very happy to have a hands-on opportunity to use them and get comfortable with them. If you don’t already know, from IG and Pinterest, CURVY is in!! You’ll find lots of ideas and inspiration built around these curvy products. The possibilities are endless! The DSP used on our project is another freebie during SAB. Don’t you loooove this time of year?!?!

Project 3 (and a first at Stamp Club) is a Slim Line Card!! You’ve probably started to see these popping up everywhere. And we will do more of these in coming months, with more complex folds, different sizes (that all fall under the term “slim line”). and more designs. But this week you’ll get to make this simple, yet beautiful card as well as learn about measurements, envelopes etc. We’ll pair Ornate Garden DPS with images from the Dragonfly Garden stamp set/ Punch Bundle.

Please plan to attend! Don’t be absent and miss out on the chance to learn new techniques and try new products. See you this week!

*If you’d like to be a guest at Stamp Club this week, email me via my Contact Page or leave a Comment below and I’ll contact you, letting you how you can join in the fun!

**To find out what Stamp Club is and how you can get involved, leave a Comment below or email me via my Contact Page. I’d love to explain all the goodness and benefits of being a Stamp Club member.

Hello Pumpkin!

Start 2021 with a fresh outlook, a new commitment to spreading joy, and a new resolve to add a little self-care. Many people describe stamping as “craft therapy”, and say that it’s much cheaper (and more fun) than seeing a real therapist. Setting aside time to do something for yourself, and then passing along your creation to a friend is a wonderful way to spread joy. Make someone else’s day!

I offer more than one way to get involved. If you are not ready or are uncomfortable with an in-person stamp class, consider trying Paper Pumpkin!

Paper Pumpkin by Stampin’ Up! is a crafting subscription kit that delivers creativity to your door every month. Each box includes everything you need to make a stunning project. You’ll get surprised with projects like cards, gift packaging, home décor, and more for just $22.00 a month (shipping included). Talk about happy mail!

Sit down and craft in your own space, on your own time. Projects are varied and the products are exclusive (you can’t get the stamps or materials anywhere else). Sign up today and give it a try! Cancel anytime. This is the perfect month to get started!

Use this link to enroll:

Last Chance – Curvy Celebrations

Hey stamping friends! This is the last chance to order this entire bundle. To get BOTH stamp sets AND the dies PLUS the designer paper, you need to order before January 4.

(After that, you can still order the Quite Curvy bundle item #156228, but it does not include the Curvy Christmas stamp set, nor the paper).


Click on this link to order the Variety Bundle

I will be offering a class using this Bundle on January 30. “Curvy Celebrations Class” January 30 at 10:00am. Class fee $25. Get $10 off class fee if you purchase this Bundle through my store before Jan 4.

Sign up for the Class by email here: Contact

Year-end Closeout Sale still going but…

Hi stamping friends! The big sale is going strong, but as warned, items are SELLING OUT fast. Please open your Holiday mini catalog, aka August – December catalog, and get your order ready. Most items are 10%-50% off!! Use this link to go directly to my store: That will automatically enter the Host Code for you.

But it you navigate to my store a different way, please use this Host Code at Checkout: N9P3MYQY Good through December 31.

Hugs & Happy stamping!

Sale and Clearance going on NOW

2 Ways to SAVE

Shop the Year-End Closeout, going on now! Most of the products from the August – June mini catalog are marked down, up to 50%!

Shop Year-End Closeout:

Shop Clearance Rack:

Holiday Open House & Card Buffet

This Sunday December 13.  10:00am-12:00

SUNDAY, December 13 between 10am and 12pm. I have lots in store for you! Christmas music, refreshments, CARD BUFFET and more!! Please come! A card buffet is a quick, serve-yourself way for you to choose and create a number of cards in a flash! Select your base, choose a background paper, add a sentiment, and finish with some embellishments. All pieces are pre-cut and pre-stamped for you – all you need to do is choose and assemble*.

  • Prize drawings
  • Get info on upcoming classes (Live and Virtual)
  • get the new January – June 2021 Mini Catalog!
  • Sale-A-Bration is coming. Get a brochure and see all the FREE stuff you can earn!
  • Yead-End Close out is happening NOW, find out what products are up to 50% off!

Hand sanitizer will be available, and wear a mask if you are more comfortable. Please invite a friend – and don’t forget to RSVP so I know you are coming!!

*Weather-permitting, the Card Buffet will be outside, and if you choose not to stay, you can simply “Grab-and-go” and do the assembling at home.

2020 Holiday Favors – Order Now

My favorite thing is to share stamping ideas with you AND to help you do it!! I can always help you get the Stampin’ Up! products you need for your DIY projects whether it’s stamping, paper crafting or scrapbooking. But not everyone is interested in making projects themselves – they just want ME to do it for them.

So maybe you are not a crafter, OR you just don’t have time this season….I have released my 2020 Holiday Favors that are made to order. You pick’em, I’ll make’em. These make great Stocking Stuffers, Co-Worker gifts, Secret Santa treats, neighbor gifts etc. See all 4 options below (use arrows)…

Ordering Info: Contact me ASAP to place your order. Last day to order is December 18. All Favors are $3 each OR any 2 for $5 (Mix & Match).

I also have adorable Gift Card Holders for $3 each. (See below.) These holders will turn a simple $5 or $10 gift card into a lovely present you’ll be happy to give (did you know?? many stores, like Starbucks and others do not provide any kind of sleeve or envelope with their gift cards anymore!) So take advantage of these beauties and be prepared!

Gift Card Holder – has pocket inside, plus space to write a message. Includes coordinating envelope.

Contact: or by text/phone/private message

Fine Print: Color/Style of paper/ribbon/embellishments is not guaranteed, but will be same or similar to the Sample items shown. All candy flavors (Mini candy bars, Ghirardelli squares, and Hershey Nuggets)  are not guaranteed but are determined upon availability of product. Customer is responsible for any and all age appropriateness/dietary restrictions/food allergies etc. and will hold supplier harmless. Receipt of this information in any form shall be considered “read and acknowledged” by customer

Calendar Class – Big Hit

November 14 was Calendar Class. This class is always a big hit – it is the most requested Class that I offer. These delightful “mini” calendars are fun to create – each page is hand created specific for that month. Once finished, it can stand up on a desk or counter displaying the page for that month. Watch for an announcement late summer of 2021 for the next class! Here are some of the highlights from class!