Thursday, April 9, 2015

Stamping 101: Choosing the Type of Stamp That's Right For You

Welcome back to my Stamping 101 series! This week, I'll be sharing lots of information about the three types of stamps that Stampin' Up! sells - wood mount, clear mount, and photopolymer. If it already seems overwhelming that there are three choices, don't worry! Keep reading, and hopefully you'll feel much more comfortable when choosing what type of stamps to buy.

First, a little background information. The majority of Stampin' Up!'s stamps are sold in either wood mount or clear mount, and you get a choice of which one you would like. Stamps that are sold by themselves (single stamps) are offered only in wood mount. The majority of the photopolymer stamps are sold only in that option. However, in the 2015 Occasions Catalog, some stamp sets were offered in all three options, which is awesome! I'm hoping that continues in the new Annual Catalog in June. One more note - all of our alphabet stamp sets are offered only in photopolymer.

Here's a little more information about each type of stamp:

Our wood-mount stamps are probably the type of stamps you're used to seeing in your local craft store. They are rubber stamps permanently mounted on maple wood blocks. Pros: I think these ink up nicely, and I like the look of them. You don’t have to worry about finding a block to put the stamp on when you want to use it. Cons: They take up more space on your shelf. You can’t see exactly where you are stamping (but we have a tool to help with that – the Stamp-a-ma-jig!).

If you choose to purchase wood-mount stamps from Stampin' Up!, there is some assembly required. The rubber part comes in a punch-out sheet, and you attach the rubber part and the sticker picture yourself. This helps to keep your costs down.

Clear mount stamps are still rubber, but they mount on clear blocks. You can buy different sizes of the blocks, and use them with all of your clear mount stamps. The rubber part is removed from the block after you are done stamping. Pros: It is easier to see where you are stamping. They take less room to store. The stamps are less expensive than the wood option. Cons: Sometimes the stamps have trouble sticking to the clear blocks. (My solution? Put a little of our SNAIL adhesive on the stamp to attach it to the block. It will stay in place while you stamp and is still able to be removed when you are done. It does leave some residue on the stamp and block, but the block can be cleaned, and it does not affect the quality of the stamp.)
Here's a video by Stampin' Up! showing how the clear mount stamps work. The video is a few years old, but all of the information is still current.
Photopolymer stamps are completely clear and really sticky. They are also used with our clear blocks. I love this option because it is SO easy to see where you are stamping! Pros: You can see right through the stamp for perfect placement every time. They are also less expensive than wood mount stamps. They too take less room to store. Cons: Only a selection of our stamps are offered in this type of stamp.

There is also a video by Stampin' Up! showcasing the photopolymer stamps. One correction to the video - our photopolymer stamps now come in the same DVD-style cases as the clear mount stamps.

Personally, I use all three types of stamps in my paper-crafting. I like the look of the wood-mount stamps the best, and I feel like I sometimes get better images with them. The photopolymer stamps are my current favorite, because they are a bit more inexpensive, and they are really easy to stamp with! The clear mount stamps are my least favorite, but when I am needing wanting more stamps and my budget doesn't allow for the more expensive wood mount, I have been known to purchase clear mount.

Hopefully choosing the type of stamp that's right for you has become clearer after reading about each one. If you have any questions that I didn't cover, please comment below and I'll be happy to answer them for you.

Now is the perfect time to try any of the three types of stamps! FREE shipping continues through tomorrow, Friday, April 10!!!

Make a purchase using hostess code FZ9BB9VV and I will send you a little thank you gift! FREE shipping only comes around about once a year, so take advantage of this great deal!

Happy Stamping!

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