Friday, 31 October 2014

Tutorial - Carving A Stamp


Hello everyone,



Today I thought I would show you how I've gone about carving a little Christmas tree stamp for myself. I would suggest for any beginners out there to purchase the stamp carving kit first to see if its something you enjoy doing. Then you can always upgrade to a bigger slab of rubber and a more complicated carving tool if you feel its something you would like to carry on with.....its very addictive so I can't see anyone not being hooked on it.


Okay,this is how I start. I usually always have a couple of sheets of scrap paper for trying out ideas first and for stamping on the inked up images to see how I am progressing. Now you can of course place your images onto the rubber using tracing paper but I tend to draw mine straight on the rubber after deciding what I want to carve. You can also take the image you've drawn on the paper and rub hard on the back of it,that should leave an imprint on the rubber too for you to start carving.




Of course, if you have anyone interested in advising you,make sure they are given the best seating advantage to supervise what you are doing.....


So, this is now the image drawn onto the rubber. Ive kept it really simple so there's no need to worry about shading what areas that are to be carved and what areas are to be left. I will do a more advanced tutorial at some point if anyone wants to see a more complicated image being made.



Go over the image with a marker so you don't rub out the lines to be carved,cut your image from the block.
I always use my Tim Holtz scissors for this,whatever you use make sure its sharp! I also always use my self healing mat for the carving,you are using a VERY sharp tool in carving so really need something to protect your work surface. Its also inevitable you will at some stage try and carve your fingers....just be careful...take it slowly,there's no rush


So,now we are ready to go. You have your image ready to be carved and your carving tool


Now,in the set you buy,there are only 2 tool heads. A number 2 and 4. The number 2 is for more intricate areas,the 4 is for larger areas. I tend to always use the 2 for everything but once again it will be what you feel most comfortable with.


Here you can see I've started carving the outline of the stamp. Take it slowly and remember in this case less is more.....once you've taken a chunk out of the rubber you can't put it back......cant think how I know this.....



More carving,you can see it really starting to take shape now. You'll also notice I've cut some of the rubber off on either side.its less for me to carve out and will not effect the final shape of the image.



When you think you have finished carving and you are happy with the shape,its time to ink the image up and see how it stamps for you. This will also highlight if there's any areas that still need to be carved. You just want the tree image and not any of the area around it. You will find on some images,you will need to ink up a few times before you are satisfied with the final print.


Image all inked up and ready for the trial stamping. It doesn't matter what ink you use for testing.


Hmmm,first stamped image....not happy with it...back to carve some more...


After more carving,inked up again and ready for another printed test image


You can see how the images differ between the first and second carvings but I'm still not happy with it.


Carved some more and inked up again


Still not impressed with the print!


Carved a bit more off and another print....I'm STILL not happy!


At this point, the Arty Director stepped in to advise where I was going wrong....it helped because I finally got the stamp to where I wanted it.


The final stamp shown with all the stamped images of the previous carvings....see how different it ended up?


A quick card to show how I've used my new stamp.


Finally,in better light,the finished card with some bling.
This stamp can be used to stamp on tags for pressies,multi stamped for gift wrapping or continue to be stamped on various backgrounds for Christmas cards. This one was embossed with Ranger Verdigris embossing powder.



Well I hope you found this helpful. I just wanted to show how easy it is to do. All you need is patience and a steady hand. I like the idea of trying to make some of my own supplies as it then makes your creations more unique to you. Plus if you carve something yourself,you can get whatever you think is missing from your stash :)

If this inspires you in anyway to start stamp carving,please leave me a link so I can come and see. Its all about helping and inspiring each other,thats why the crafting community is the best!
.......................................................................................................................................

I've included a couple of links below for my UK based followers/readers for the stamp carving kit and Julie's wonderful stamp carving book which really is the best out there.


Stamp carving kit

Julie's book

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Have a lovely weekend everyone

Donna x.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Garden Girl In The Green


Hello everyone,


Happy that you all liked my little googly eyed critter yesterday.....unfortunately my cat wouldn't sit still long enough for me to put a pair of the eyes on her...spoilsport.....


A tag for you all today. You all know how I love my Stampotique stuff....not that I have much of it sadly,anyway,the challenge was to use your favourite colours. That got me thinking,I like ALL colours! I know some people absolutely hate certain colours but I can honestly say I d be happy to use any colours. I took a look through my paints and sprays and realised that I do have a love for all shades of green,thats what I am drawn to so I thought,well green it is then :)








I am entering this into the following challenges:

Stampotique Designers,Favourite Colours SDC171


Simon Stamp Weds,Anything Goes





Dylusions sprays,promarkers,Stampotique stamp


Hope you like it

Donna x


Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Read all about it


Hello everyone,


Quick post from me today. I think I've run out of inspiration lately.....no,thats not an excuse to go on another splurge :)


Anyway,I have a card for you today staring one of my favourite little critters.






I am entering this into the following challenges:


Less is More,Newsprint

Inspiration Destination,Anything Goes

Addicted to Stamps,CAS

Stampotique Designers,SDC168 - Book Text


Inktense pencils,Stampotique stamp,sentiment is a paula pascal stamp,card candi. I just love these googly eyes....expect to see them a lot in the coming weeks!

Hope you like it

Donna x

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Stampy fun


Hello everyone,


I've been having a little play around with my blog. Ive added a tutorials tab now as I am planning to start doing some by popular demand :)


Anyway,on a very dull,dark day in the UK,I have a card for you once again using my own stamps.






I am entering this into the following challenges:


Craft Stamper,Take It Make It challenge,Multicoloured Stamping Technique

Simon Stamp Monday,Anything Goes

Inspiration Destination,Anything Goes




I used Faber Castell Pitt Pens to colour the stamps before stamping with them,a little highlighting with a Posca pen. All stamps are my own apart from the sentiment which is from Clearly Besotted.

Hope you like it.

Donna x



Friday, 24 October 2014

Look into my eyes.....


Hello everyone,


A big thank you to my new followers for joining me and my 'older' followers for staying with me! Thank you also to everyone who left a comment on Julie's blog re my 'bleach blocking' tutorial. I loved doing it and it's made me think that I may start to do tutorials on a regular basis....yes Emma I have listened to what you said :)

I was thinking about giving one of my cards away each month if anyone is interested? We spend so much time creating but then most times it's shoved in a box somewhere never to see the light of day which is a real shame. Please let me know if anyone would be interested in receiving one,not sure really as you all make cards anyway?!

Speaking of cards,I have one for you today.









I am entering this into the following challenges:

Less Is More,Little Creatures

Simon Stamp Monday,Anything Goes




Distress stains,promarkers,stampotique and art journey stamps.

Hope you like it

Have a great weekend everyone

Donna x

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Speed Craft Challenge 5 - Halloween







Hello everyone,


Yes another instalment of the mad challenge called Speed Craft but now you can take 15 minutes to create your work of art....see now's there no excuse for not joining in :)

Please pop along here to see what my teamies have made. Also in case you haven't seen we are having a GDTM call,details on that on the blog too.

So,I have made a card today using the Halloween theme....which I picked....then wished I hadn't. My mind went blank,I made something,hated it and recycled it in the bin,it was awful. Anyway,sat and had a little think and made something I liked a lot more.




supplies ready,using one of my glue gun mask thingys

well within even the new time limit

isn't he a little cutie?

I am entering him into the following challenges:

The Crafters Cafe,Spookable

Thats Crafty,Spooky


Inkylicious,Glimmer mist and Cosmic shimmer sprays,promarkers,stickles,Stampotique and Stampendous stamps.


Don't forget,if you ever have any questions about any of the supplies used etc,feel free to email me....I am quite a friendly soul really :)


Hope you like it

Donna x




A real honour








Hello everyone,

An exciting day for me today....look where I am featured doing the 'bleach blocking' technique for the wonderful Julie.

I would love it if you popped along to her blog to see what I made here


This is a real honour for me as I adore Julie's work and can credit her with the inspiration for getting me starting carving my own stamps,so a happy day :))

Thank you so much Julie. x

Will be back later with my post for the Speed Craft challenge....it was my turn to choose....so anything could happen!

Donna x





Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Butterfly Love


Hello everyone,

Well its a tail end of a storm lashing the UK today....hope you are all okay wherever you are in the world :)

A tag for you all today dominated by a very large butterfly. Kept seeing Ingrid using these stamps and I thought I NEED those stamps......what I didn't realise was how big they are....you could eat your dinner off the one thats as big as a plate!!







Lighting is a bit rubbish today,apologies for that



I am entering this in the following challenges:

Butterfly challenge,Butterfly with a Tag

Inspiration Destination,Anything Goes

Simon Stamp Monday,Anything Goes




Decoart paints,distress inks,embossing powder,dylusions,Stampendous stamp (butterfly) and the sentiment stamp is from Precious Remembrance Shop ( these stamps are wonderful by the way,just saying)


Hope you like it

Donna x

Monday, 20 October 2014

Lets do spooky again


Hello everyone,


Quick post from me today,another spooky card to add to the collection. I feel a little guilty making my favourite little weirdo all scary as he's such a sweetie normally.

This post is for my wonderful friend Ingrid who is not very well at the moment,I know the sight of a little weirdo will cheer her up :)






I am entering this into the following challenges:

Thats Crafty,Spooky

Try it on Tuesdays,Spooky

Pan Pastel,Halloween Colours



Stampotique and Stampendous stamps,stickles,white embossing powder,sakura stardust pen.

Hope you like it

Donna x



Friday, 17 October 2014

Christmas is coming early


Hello everyone,


Yep,a Christmas card for you today.....I have made 3 so far.....and a lot more to go! This one features this wonderful Unity stamp that I received as a freebie as my order was over the qualifying amount.







I am entering this into the following challenges:


Creative Card Crew,Black Cardstock

Deep Ocean,Christmas in October



Unity and Paula Pascal stamps,verdigris and white embossing powders,stickles. The lovely snowflake at the top I think is a die cut,that was given to me by my favourite crafter Ingrid :)

Have a lovely weekend everyone

Hope you like it

Donna x


Saffie says happy weekend,to all humans too

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Drippy drips



Hello everyone,


Thank you everyone for all your nice comments re my carved stamps yesterday,I may carve a special one as a give away soon.....oh no you all cry....actually yes I know, Ingrid,I still have to make you one!

A journal page today from my newly created Journal...where else of course.










I am entering this into the following challenges:

That Craft Place,Girls but no pink

Craft Room challenge,Make your own background

The Mirror Crack'd,The Body Beautiful

Artist Trading Post Exchange,Anything Mixed Media Goes




Watercolour paper,gesso,gelatos,pitt brush and micron pens,Unity stamp,crafters workshop and wendy vecchi stencils. The dragonfly was die cut from a gelli printed page. The leaves were formed from using the negative cutouts from a die the lovely Ingrid sent me.


If you like your gelatos this technique is fab. Gesso the page,rub your gelatos on,spray water on and let drip....perfect! Check Youtube for the Donna Downey videos,really helpful


Hope you like it

Donna x






Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Meet Smiler......


Hello everyone,


I am VERY happy today....doesn't happen often.....just received a load of stamps I'd ordered. If anyone from Unity Stamps is reading this,your customer service is beyond wonderful. I only ordered a few stamps last week and they are already here with a free Christmas stamp too. Thank you Doreen for showcasing one of the lovely stamps that got me hooked :)


A card for you all today using my own carved stamps. I like to call my little cat face Smiler,for obvious reasons. This is NOT based on my cat....she's a grump.....








As Christmas is coming soon,get hubby santa to put a little stamp carving kit under the tree...you will love it!


I am entering this into the following challenges:


Less Is More,One Layer Card

Craft Stamper Take It Make It,Multicoloured stamping technique

Thats Crafty,Keep It Simple

Simon Stamp Monday,O is for..........Original in this case



All stamps are my own hand carved ones apart from the sentiment which is Dina Wakleys. My stamps were coloured using faber castell pitt pens ( I am in love with these) and then stamped onto the card. I outlined the stamps using my black micron pen. The stripy necks were just hand drawn and coloured in using a thicker micron pen.


Hope you like it

Donna xxx










Monday, 13 October 2014

Spooky Twinkie


Hello everyone,


Thank you all for your comments re out of control craft spending.....seems like you can all relate to that! Since I have last blogged.....yes......I have ordered even more stuff........yes......its bad......new crafty stuff makes me have new ideas though.....who am I fooling?!? My name is Donna and I am a Craft Addict,see,thats better :)


A spooky tag for you all today seeing as its getting nearer Halloween time. Yes this tag really is this bright too!







I am entering this into the following challenges:


Addicted to stamps,Anything Goes

Left of Centre,Altered Art

Simply create Too,Halloween(or use lots of orange)

Simon stamp Monday,O is for.......  (I am using October and orange of course)!


Decoart paints,promarkers,stampotique stamp,the skull is Jolees Boutique and the 'cobweb' is made using the glue gun.

Hope you like it

Donna x

Friday, 10 October 2014

Still in love with Autumn


Hello everyone,


Well Friday again.....strange how it happens every week isn't it.......


I have spent too much money this week on various art supplies....of course I blame all you lovely crafty ladies out there for showcasing such works of art that I then decide I want need to buy. I am seriously thinking about setting up some sort of helpline blog type thingy where we can discuss our addiction all together....all at least swap supplies that we no longer use or want :)


Right,a card for you today on the Autumnal/Fall trend again.









I am entering this into the following challenges:

City Crafter,Leaves

Thats Crafty,Keep it Simple

Virginias View,Clean and Simple



Inkadinkadoo stamp and I think the acorns are from Michaels from an Ebay seller.

Hope you like it

Have a great weekend everyone 

Donna x

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Speed Craft Challenge #4


Hello everyone,



Yes its time for another mad 10 minute Speed Craft Challenge, pop along here to see what my wonderful teamies have created too. We also have badges for the Winner and Top 3 to display( we all love badges) and a linky tool so we can come and visit all your art works when you link up. Give it a go,its really fun and you'd be surprised what you can create in that time :)


I decided to try some ATCs for a change just to highlight that you can create something other then a card in the time frame. Just normal card stock cut to size....yep and I did round the corners....I told you I love my corner puncher,right?! The lovely Nikki chose the theme of 'Ink sprays and/or Spritzers' for this challenge,so nice and easy right?! I decided against using my wonderful Dylusions as they are maybe a bit too potent!


supplies at the ready


whew,just in time


finished creation...3 for the price of 1!


Inkylicious sprays,Dina Wakley stamps.

Hope you like it

Donna x




Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Journal page


Hello everyone,


Well at least its sunny today in my part of the UK....after a horrendous wet and windy start! Had to give in and the heating's on now....Autumn is really here now then.


I promised you a few days ago when I showed you all the cover of my Journal book that if you were good I would maybe let you see inside. Some of you stated that you couldn't ever be good.....yes Annie I am talking about you.......so for those of you that have been behaving you can see a page in the Journal.









I am entering this into the following challenge:

The Mirror Crack'd,The Body Beautiful



Fresco paint,Archival inks,posca and micron pens,charcoal pencils,Stampendous circle stencil (in the background). The girl image is drawn freehand and the stamps used are mine that I have carved.


Hope you like it

Donna x







Saturday, 4 October 2014

A Little Birdy


Hello Everyone,


What a miserable day here in the UK,think the lovely late Summer has definitely gone now.....still now there's no garden distractions to stop crafting then :)


A tag for you today,featuring my favourite little birdy of course.







I am entering this in the following challenges:


Altered Electics,Anything Goes

The Crafters Cafe,Use punches and/or die cuts

Try it on Tuesday,Animals



Fresco paints,Inkylicious sprays,Brushos,stickles,posca pens,Dina Wakley stamp. The bird was stamped and then cut from a Gelli print. The die cut behind the bird is the negative from the Chloe die which was then also given the Gelli plate treatment.All on a size 8 tag which had sprays and brushos added to it.

Hope you like it

Donna x










Wednesday, 1 October 2014

A True Gent


Hello everyone,


Yes posting a bit late today......my kitchen ceiling to decided to throw down some huge chunks of plaster this morning.....lucky I was not sitting at the table eating my breakfast! Its made a huge mess and my lovely crafty supplies were all covered in dust....thats the important stuff right?! Oh and the cat is fine so could have been worse :/


Anyway,to cheer myself up I made something quirky.....unusual for me right?! This is the front of my new journal book,I have already quite a few pages inside finished.....if you all behave yourselves out there I may let you look at some of them :)





Wonder what Smile is hiding,shall we look?


Ah,this is what he thinks he looks like!



See, you pull his finger and you get this surprise!!!!

I am entering this into:

Stampotique Designers Challenge, Masculine SDC 167



Hope you like it

Donna x