Crafting is a fun activity that both kids and adults can indulge in. As someone who enjoys DIYing, I always come across numerous crafting ideas and projects, that end up on my “attempt this someday” list, and if we are being honest, half of them never get executed. I am certain that I am probably speaking to a lot of individuals who can relate given the copious amounts of time they spend on Pinterest pinning ideas that they would one day like to try.
One of the things that have been on my list for the longest time is designing and creating stamps, and ever since I acquired my Cricut Explorer Air 2, the itch has been impossible to satisfy. Well, finally I got around to making the stamps with the help of my trusty Cricut machine, and I am going to share with you how.
What You Need
Making your own stamps is one of the easiest things you can do, and before you begin, you must have the following items.
- A Cricut machine: if the title didn’t already give it away, you will need a Cricut machine for this project. I have been a fan of Cricut devices for the longest time now, and I used my Explore Air 2 to make the stamps.
- Design Space file: which will provide you with the images and patterns that you need to cut out.
- Speedball carving blocks or foam: depending on whether you choose to work with the foam or carving blocks, you can use the machine to cut out the foam or the TrueControl knife to carve out the stamps.
- Wooden blocks: which will be used as the base of the stamps.
- Cricut’s TrueControl Knife
- Vinyl: this is necessary if you are using the carving blocks the vinyl will be required for cutting out the shape of your stamp, which will be used for carving.
- Some tea towels
Stamp Making Process with a Cricut
In my case, I decided to use foam as it was the easiest material to find at the local crafts store.
1. Once you’ve gathered all the necessary items together and are ready to start, begin by opening the design space file and selecting the “make it” option for your specific design. If you’d like to use your own images, then this is also okay as all you will have to do is first upload the files and then select them in the design space by clicking on “make it.” I made my stamps with the help of my little ones, and as such, we worked with a few different images, including dinosaurs, start as well as some of their favorite cartoon characters. Next, you must choose the size of the images depending on the images that you have.
2. The second step in my process involved changing the settings of my machine so that it would cut my material of choice, which was foam. To ensure that my material did not move about while it was being cut, I used a heavy grip mat on which the foam was placed.
3. With the assistance of my trusty Cricut, I then began cutting my selected images. I found that a deep cut blade to be most appropriate as foam can be a little thick, and I needed my stamps to have some depth.
4. Once my foam cutouts were done, I used some glue to stick them to the wooden blocks and let them dry overnight.
5. I decided to label my stamps using vinyl since I had some extra ones lying around. So once again, I selected my images, and this time around, I inserted my vinyl material into the Explore Air 2, cutting out the images needed and using them as labels for my stamps. And voila your stamps are ready to go.
I must admit that as a first attempt at stamping, my kids and I did a pretty good job as we loved the outcome of our little crafting sessions. Our stamps were so good that I have to admit we have created so many of them may be a little more than we care to admit.
For anyone who chooses to use vinyl and the carving blocks, the process is slightly longer and somewhat tedious but well worth it. Just like when you are working with foam, select your images and size them accordingly and then feed the Cricut with the vinyl.
The machine will create cutouts of your images from the vinyl, and it is these cutouts together with the carving block that you will use to create your stamps. Start by placing your cutouts on the carving block and with the help of Cricut’s TrueControl Knife carve around the pattern.
You can opt to completely cut off the edges of your stamp, but if you wish for it to remain intact with the bottom of the stamp still attached to the rest of the carving block, then we would recommend not doing so. Once you have finished cutting out the patterns/ cutouts you had stuck to the carving block, you can remove the vinyl by peeling it off. And once again, voila!! Your stamp is ready.
New to Cricut Machines?
Cricut is king as far as anything crafting or in our case stamping is involved. They have quite a bunch of machines that you can use to make your stamps from the comfort of your home in in the shortest time possible. The Explore Air 2, which we used for the stamping project, is one of their advanced machines that integrate technology into crafting, thus making the process much easier. I assure you that once you get the hang of how the machine works you will be using it to make your stamps and for other crafts endlessly. I highly recommend getting membership access to Cricut’s Design space as it is beneficial not only for when you are stamping but also for when you are engaging in other crafts.