Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Made Homemade Stamps From Wine Corks and Craft Foam

I was reading a book about various kinds of journals titled, “The Decorated Page: Journals, Scrapbooks & Albums Made Simply Beautiful” by Gwen Diehn in which homemade stamps were mentioned as being made from wine corks. I have heard of them being carved from erasers but not from wine corks!

I immediately put the book down and set off to try it. I save our wine corks in a decorative glass container.

In less then 60 seconds my first wine cork stamp was finished. It was in the shape of a star. I then carved a heart which I botched so that was changed into the letter “V”. I then did made a heart that looked decent. All of that took less than five minutes.

The materials necessary are a craft knife, a cork and a marker. Using a Sharpie marker and freehand, I drew the shape on the cork. I then used the craft knife to carefully cut out the design. I cut along the edge of the design, pressing into the cork. Then I made cuts from the outer edge inward toward the already-cut place, at which point it fell off. I then used the knife to clean up the designs edges.

The hardest part was figuring out how to hold the cork so that if the knife slipped I’d not cut myself.

Obviously the more detailed the design and the more curvy the lines, the harder this would be to cut. I urge you to give it a try.

The stamped design had a wonderful texture due to the cork’s surface texture. It looked a bit scratchy. I also enjoyed the way it looks since it is not factory-perfect and symmetrical.

If the surface is too uneven you can cut it down to be more flat before beginning the carving.

I think I am going to carve my own alphabet stamps from wine corks next!

Someday I would like to own linoleum carving tools so I could make more intricate designs out of erasers.

Homemade Foam Stamps
Oh, and something I did earlier this year for my son’s letterboxing birthday party was to have the children draw designs on craft foam and cut them out with scissors, then to apply them with Gorilla Glue to a piece of pine wood for a homemade foam stamp. This was very easy to do. The foam stamp has an interesting texture to it; the image does not have a flat texture.

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