Friday, 31 October 2014

Tutorial - Carving A Stamp

Hello everyone,

Today I thought I would show you how I've gone about carving a little Christmas tree stamp for myself. I would suggest for any beginners out there to purchase the stamp carving kit first to see if its something you enjoy doing. Then you can always upgrade to a bigger slab of rubber and a more complicated carving tool if you feel its something you would like to carry on with.....its very addictive so I can't see anyone not being hooked on it.

Okay,this is how I start. I usually always have a couple of sheets of scrap paper for trying out ideas first and for stamping on the inked up images to see how I am progressing. Now you can of course place your images onto the rubber using tracing paper but I tend to draw mine straight on the rubber after deciding what I want to carve. You can also take the image you've drawn on the paper and rub hard on the back of it,that should leave an imprint on the rubber too for you to start carving.

Of course, if you have anyone interested in advising you,make sure they are given the best seating advantage to supervise what you are doing.....

So, this is now the image drawn onto the rubber. Ive kept it really simple so there's no need to worry about shading what areas that are to be carved and what areas are to be left. I will do a more advanced tutorial at some point if anyone wants to see a more complicated image being made.

Go over the image with a marker so you don't rub out the lines to be carved,cut your image from the block.
I always use my Tim Holtz scissors for this,whatever you use make sure its sharp! I also always use my self healing mat for the carving,you are using a VERY sharp tool in carving so really need something to protect your work surface. Its also inevitable you will at some stage try and carve your fingers....just be careful...take it slowly,there's no rush

So,now we are ready to go. You have your image ready to be carved and your carving tool

Now,in the set you buy,there are only 2 tool heads. A number 2 and 4. The number 2 is for more intricate areas,the 4 is for larger areas. I tend to always use the 2 for everything but once again it will be what you feel most comfortable with.

Here you can see I've started carving the outline of the stamp. Take it slowly and remember in this case less is more.....once you've taken a chunk out of the rubber you can't put it back......cant think how I know this.....

More carving,you can see it really starting to take shape now. You'll also notice I've cut some of the rubber off on either side.its less for me to carve out and will not effect the final shape of the image.

When you think you have finished carving and you are happy with the shape,its time to ink the image up and see how it stamps for you. This will also highlight if there's any areas that still need to be carved. You just want the tree image and not any of the area around it. You will find on some images,you will need to ink up a few times before you are satisfied with the final print.

Image all inked up and ready for the trial stamping. It doesn't matter what ink you use for testing.

Hmmm,first stamped image....not happy with it...back to carve some more...

After more carving,inked up again and ready for another printed test image

You can see how the images differ between the first and second carvings but I'm still not happy with it.

Carved some more and inked up again

Still not impressed with the print!

Carved a bit more off and another print....I'm STILL not happy!

At this point, the Arty Director stepped in to advise where I was going helped because I finally got the stamp to where I wanted it.

The final stamp shown with all the stamped images of the previous carvings....see how different it ended up?

A quick card to show how I've used my new stamp.

Finally,in better light,the finished card with some bling.
This stamp can be used to stamp on tags for pressies,multi stamped for gift wrapping or continue to be stamped on various backgrounds for Christmas cards. This one was embossed with Ranger Verdigris embossing powder.

Well I hope you found this helpful. I just wanted to show how easy it is to do. All you need is patience and a steady hand. I like the idea of trying to make some of my own supplies as it then makes your creations more unique to you. Plus if you carve something yourself,you can get whatever you think is missing from your stash :)

If this inspires you in anyway to start stamp carving,please leave me a link so I can come and see. Its all about helping and inspiring each other,thats why the crafting community is the best!

I've included a couple of links below for my UK based followers/readers for the stamp carving kit and Julie's wonderful stamp carving book which really is the best out there.

Stamp carving kit

Julie's book


Have a lovely weekend everyone

Donna x.


  1. fabulous tutorial Donna. I really must start having a go at making my own stamps for my journaling pages. have a lovely weekend
    x catherine

  2. Brilliant tutorial! I might just have to have a go.

  3. Great tutorial Donna, and your tree stamp is lovely, nice card!
    Amanda x

  4. Fabulous tutorial Donna but I think the credit must go to the Arty director for that!....really lovely Christmas tree image you made as well. Ruth xx

  5. Thank you for the fab turorial Donna, i love the idea but know i would cut myself so won't be trying but if i can convince my OH to help that would be a different matter, see how i go on!

    Wonderful card, love your stamp shape you very clever person:-) xxx

  6. Oh Inky, this is brilliant! I must try it! I'm going to ask Santa Greg for the kit I think! Very good tutorial, thank you!! Big thumbs up! Xxx

  7. What a totally brilliant tutorial and very unique. Love how you showed the different carved stages. And as for your cat.....totally gorgeous. Is he / she a rag doll ?
    Julie x

  8. Your arty tree is LUVERLEE!!...Fabulous tute how you showed the stages....I really must have a go now! ;) ... Jan x

  9. Such a fabulous stamp you made, the card is simply gorgeous. Thank you so much for the kind comment.

    Love and hugs

  10. Wow, with a steady hand like that Donna, maybe you should go to med school and become a surgeon! No way I could that! Wonderful tutorial my friend and I just love your advisor! hugs :)

  11. Great tutorial and I love the stamp you carved. I alwyas like these kind of Christmastrees, so playful. The card you made with is lovely, the glitter is so subtle!

  12. Really wonderful, thanks for sharing.

  13. What a great tutorial. I think you could have stopped at any of these stages and still made a terrific stamp. Really love the final stamp and artwork and how you framed and presented it. Thanks for the links too.
    (Followed over to here from my BBFs Annie and Susi).

  14. Donna it took you a while and Ithe final result is fab. Love a non traditional tree and with embossing powder it has modern and lovely look. Wow!

  15. This was a GREAT tutorial, you make it look so easy, and I love your tree, perfect for your Christmas cards, thanks for sharing..

  16. A perfect tutorial which will remove any fear a beginner might have. I, too, enjoy making my own supplies for exactly the same reasons. Your art director is beautiful and I wonder if yours likes to "chew" rubber like mine does? Erasers and stamp carving blocks are his favorites so I have to supervise his supervision!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave me a comment,it's really appreciated.