Thursday, July 31, 2014

3 Things To Know Before Using The Flower Patch Stamp Set

I have been itching to use the Flower Patch stamp set with matching Framelits ever since I got the set but there was not enough time before Convention. But I needed a birthday card for my sister-in-law and decided that today was the day to play with them!
I eagerly mounted up a few of the photopolymer stamps and started inking. To say my results were less than stellar would be an understatement! I had gaps where there was no ink as well as uneven mottling of ink in larger stamp areas.

I checked over the posts I had read on Stampin Connection, the private forum for Stampin' Up! Demonstrators. There had been several suggestions:
  • Clean stamps well with stamp mist and the Stampin scrubber.
  • Use a white eraser to rub across the stamp and then clean the stamp again.
  • Rub the stamp along your arm before inking it.
  • Use Versamark on the stamp first and then your ink.
None of these worked! Either the ink didn't seem to adhere to the stamp or it adhered too well and when I removed the stamp from the paper, there were gaps in my stamping.
I was about ready to throw the whole set of stamps across my craft room!
I did a search one last time to see if I had missed anything about these stamps. I had! There was a suggestion to place the piercing mat under the paper to which you were stamping.
Hallelujah! This technique worked BRILLIANTLY and, most importantly, with repeatable results. My stamped images were now clean and crisp just like the cards I had seen on Pinterest!
Now I did discover a few things for myself, and these I want to share with you.
  1. These photopolymer stamps are STICKY (notice the capital letters?)! When I tried to ink them the stamp pad would get stuck to the stamp! This reminded me of getting a new cutting mat for my Silhouette Cameo. Before I could use it successfully, I had to remove some of the stickiness. I applied that same principle to these stamps. I used a piece of an old t-shirt to blot the stamp until it would no longer stick to my hand. Then I inked it.
  2. These stamps will get permanently stained with some color, in my case Melon Mambo and Blackberry Bliss. Though they may not look as pretty as they did when you first opened the package, the stamps will still work.
  3. There is a trick to lining up the Framelits with the stamps. Brenda Keenan from Keenan Kreations has an excellent video detailing how to make it easy to cut out these stamps. I used her method which will definitely help the next time I use these stamps!
So for the card I created, I cased a card by Leena Girsa.

This is my card. I'm thrilled with how it turned out!

I finished the card with some non Stampin' Up! sequins and ribbon. All other supplies are listed below.
So, have you tried using the Flower Patch stamp set? I'd love it if you would share your experience with me in a comment below!