Helpful Tips & Tricks - Wood Mounted Stampers
Wood mounted stampers are hand stamped and not digitally printed, so human factors and other mistakes can cause a bad imprint result and inconsistencies. Below are some helpful information on getting a fresh start from possible issues and helpful TIPS AND TRICKS that should insure a better imprint result and to get the most from your new stamper.
All stampers are test imprinted for quality and legibility before shipping. But there are a number of factors that could be causing issues with your imprints. Some include; printing on a none-flat surface, or on a raised, embossed area which will cause imbalanced imprint results. Not properly cleaning your stamper can result in a bad imprint. Stamping with too much pressure, not enough pressure or an imbalanced amount of pressure on the stamper can cause possible issues and inconsistencies in results. Imbalance in ink coverage on your engraved design surface and / or not using the appropriate ink pad maybe the main contributor in the cause for a bad imprint. But the good news is that most of these possible issues can be remedied! Read on...
A Fresh Start
Lets start over. First, cleaning your inked rubber portion of your stamper before starting a new stamping session. Simply use mild soap and a rag or paper towels. For a deeper cleaning us an old tooth brush and/or Q-tips with room temperature water and mild soap. Be sure to gently brush the engraved rubber design when using an old toothbrush so you do not damage the engraved design. Other cleaning methods include using baby wipes or a stamper liquid spray that can be bought at most hobby shops, such as Michaels, Hobby Lobby or similar stores online. DO NOT run the entire wood mounted stamper under the faucet or dunk it under water. This will cause longer than usual drying time, additional stains on the wood mounts and possible issues with your stamper cushion which can result in permanent damage to your stamper. Clean just the rubber portion. After cleaning, make sure to let the stamper completely air dry or pat dry with a paper towel before starting another stamping project. Check for residues left from the paper towel, dust or cotton from the Q-tip on the engraved rubber portion before starting another imprint. Use a less adhesive, removable scotch tape to pick these dust particles off the engraved design, if needed. Once your stamper is clean and dried, you are now ready for a fresh start!
Most imprinting issues begin with the type of colored ink pads used. The quick and easy solution may simply be buying the appropriate colored ink pad to work best with your new wood mounted stamper. Below is the recommended colored ink pad brands that, after testing and use, seem to work best with your new wood mounted stamper.
Recommended Colored Ink Pads
Ink pad brands that work best are ones that are NOT TOO CUSHIONY. Be sure to check yours. When inking, these types of stamp pads will flood the engraved detailed portion and pick up background details, causing final issues with your stamping results. Clogging of the engraved details could also occur and over-inking will be an issue resulting in inconstant imprints, smearing, unnecessary marks and lost of design details. Ink pad brands that seem to work best, are by "BRILLIANCE" and/or "MEMENTOS" brand colored ink pads. They are not cushiony but provide ample ink contact for the stamper. They also offer a variety of colors, including metallic colors for your creative stamping. They are non-toxic and is water-based inks for easy cleaning. They work well with most paper and envelope types, including metallic papers and vellum type of envelopes! Air dry time may vary so be sure to let the imprints properly dry before handling. Test or experiment on the side for best imprint results before stamping on your final medium. Sorry but currently 2impress do not sell these supplies but they can be found at most hobby stores mentioned above or online at most art and craft shops.
NOTE: If your stamper design is leaving unnecessary background marks, unclear design imprints, than it maybe time to clean the stamper to get a fresh start. But it is also important to occasionally clean the inked engraved, rubber stamp portion area AFTER several imprints and after finishing a stamping session, especially if you are doing multiple imprinting within a stamping project. Cleaning will help ensure the engraved portion of your new rubber stamper clean and free from possible ink buildups which could affect the final imprinting details. It will also help your imprints have a more consistent, clean clearer results and the longevity of your new stamper.
Additional Tips For A Better Imprint
1. Be sure to stamp on CLEAN, FLAT, solid surfaces only. Try to avoid imprinting on curved areas. The amount of PRESSURE will also yield different ink coverage and imprint results. USE BOTH HANDS for a more EVEN pressure. But be sure to NOT press down on one side too much, instead, use an even BALANCED, straight downward pressure when imprinting. Experiment with the amount of pressure used, starting with lighter pressure to harder ones until the right amount is found. Than use this same amount of pressure for all your imprinting. Again, be sure to clean after several imprinting sessions to ensure no buildup of ink occurs and to help keep the design clean for the best imprint result. If you have accidentally pressed too hard, flooded the design with too much ink and unnecessary ink has contaminated the design or background of your engraved rubber, you will need to repeat the cleaning process above to reset your stamper before stamping again.
2. Again, experiment a few imprints on the side or on a disposable paper or envelope to be imprinted on - BEFORE imprinting on your final paper or envelopes to get the best possible, consistent impression and results. Once you find the right combinations that works best for your design and stamper, keep using that same method. Try also pausing for a second when the inked rubber design makes contact with your paper or envelope, instead of a quick hit to get more ink absorption and darker results. A quick hit, or imprint, maybe the cause for improper, lighter-than-usual, uneven imprint results or it may just work best, depending on your design and project. Experiment on the side to find the best results.
3. When stamping, be sure that there are NO textures obstructing beneath or on your area being stamped on. DO NOT stamp on embossed papers or seeded, textured types of papers. Stamp only on clean, flat paper for best results. Other mediums such as fabrics, wax, wood and metal will have different results depending on inks being used and other factors. Also check to see for obstructions such as creases or glued folds on the area BENEATH the area being imprinted on. If there are creases, such as a crease fold and/or glue from envelopes, insert a clean, flat hard cardboard paper directly in between, inside the envelope under the area being imprinted on to help keep the area flat, hard and creased free, before making your imprint. If printing on the flap portion of the envelope, a trick is to flip that up and lay that on a flat, hard surface before imprinting. If you still have questions, feel free send a convo or contact via email to 2impressShop@gmail.com.