Nine Stamp Room Essentials, part 1
New stampers often ask, “What are the first things I need to buy in order to start stamping?” Let’s face it, the more advanced stamper can have thousands of dollars in product and supplies, especially if she’s a “collector.” So here’s my “Nine Essentials” list. (Note: There are lots of companies out there, but I’m a Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator, so my list will only be products that we carry in our Stampin’ Up! catalogs and online store. If you’ve been stamping awhile, your list may be totally different, and that’s ok. These are just the basics that I’d grab if I could only take one bagful of products with me.)
This is a given, of course. One of the things I love about Stampin’ Up! is that our stamps are sold in sets. We have a few single stamps, but most are sets. Some sets are all images, some are all sentiments, and some have a nice mix of each. When I was a beginner, I tried to find multi-purpose sets that would work for multiple occasions and multiple groups of people. I mean, floral sets are my fave, but I wouldn’t send a pretty, lacy, frilly, floral card to my brother. The Wetlands stamp set is a wonderful choice, because it can be used for many occasions and people, and it’s not expensive. Better Together is another fun set that’s very versatile.
Stampin’ Up! offers three styles of stamps to meet your crafting needs. Wood-mount and Clear-mount stamps are made from high quality rubber. Wood-mount sets include a farmed maple wood block for each stamp in the set, and you’ll mount the stamps permanently to the wood block.
The third type of stamp we offer is Photopolymer.
Photopolymer stamps are transparent, so you can perfectly place the images. You can also bend them a bit, giving you more flexiblity (ha! little pun there) with your stamping, and you can add several stamps to one block.
Some advantages to Wood-mount sets are they’re always ready to use, and they’re permanently mounted. Clear-mount and photopolymer sets take up much less storage space, and are less expensive. If you select Clear-mount or photopolymer, you’ll need acrylic blocks. These are reusable, so you only need one set for all your stamps. I prefer the Stampin’ Up! clear blocks, because they’re shaped like our wood blocks, and are “finger friendly.” And, of course, the advantages to photopolymer, besides taking less space, are that you can see exactly where you’re stamping and they are flexible.
Again, this is kind of a given. You need something to put on your stamps so that you can enjoy the image.
Stampin’ Up! offers several types of ink. All of our Core Colors and In Colors – except Basic Black and Basic Gray – are water based ink. Water based ink is easy to clean, and it’s easy to use. Basic Black and Basic Gray are available in a more permanent archival ink. These are perfect if you want to water color an image; simply stamp the outline in one of the archival colors, then use a Blender Pen or Aqua Painter to color the image using the water based colors.
Two other black inks we offer are Tuxedo Black Memento and Jet Black Stazon. The Memento ink is very nice for detailed images or sentiments. It’s also water based, so if you water color with it, you’ll need to be careful, because it can bleed. Stazon is a permanent, solvent based ink. It’s perfect for water coloring, especially on Watercolor Paper or Shimmery White Cardstock, because it will not bleed with water (Buffy’s rule of thumb for coloring: Whatever you’re coloring with, use the opposite type for the outline. So if you’re going to color with a water based medium, use a solvent or archival ink for the outline. If you’re coloring with a solvent based medium – like alcohol markers – use a water based ink for the outline.) StazOn is also useful for stamping on non-porous items – like tile or metal.
Finally, we have VersaMark and Whisper White Craft ink. VersaMark creates a “tone on tone” watermark effect. It’s also sticky, so perfect for heat embossing. As the name suggests, it’s “versatile.” Craft ink is a longer lasting, fade resistant pigment ink. It’s also perfect for heat embossing or for creating an opaque look on darker cardstock.
Number three on my list of essentials is Paper. (Often, Stamps, Ink, and Paper are combined into one element – “SIP.”) Paper is another obvious choice for the new stamper, because once you have tools to stamp with, you need something to stamp on.
Stampin’ Up! cardstock colors coordinate with our ink, so you get a perfect match. Cardstock colors are sold individually and also in “collections,” so you can get a variety of colors in one pack.
Whisper White and Very Vanilla are both perfect for stamping. The ultrasmooth finish on these cardstocks allow for a crisp, clean stamped image. Of course, you can also stamp on colored cardstock. Our Shimmery White Cardstock works really well with water coloring, as does the Watercolor Paper.
Stampin’ Up! also has a wide variety of Designer Series Paper that coordinates with our Core Colors, plus Vellum and Kraft Cardstock. Sparkly Glimmer Paper, Foil Sheets, and Window Sheets are also fun – but I don’t consider these “essential” for the new stamper.
So there are the first three of nine essentials. Drop in tomorrow to see what my next three essentials are!
Thanks for stopping by Stamping with Buffy. Have a wonderful day!