Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Happy Summer Solstice!

  Aaah, summer officially arrives here in the northeast US (EST) at 7:09 PM although the current temp. is 80 degrees F with a humidity level of 79% and it's barely 10AM! The heat index value is supposed to get to 100-103 degrees so as much as I love summer I am ever so thankful to have a place with air conditioning to cool off in. This will be another quick post so I can enjoy the outdoors before the heat of the afternoon sets in.

   Lesson 6 in Stamp Carving 101 was about carving a damask pattern. Since I'm working quickly here please click on the icon at the right for more information on the class, or you can find more info on my lessons in my older posts.

  I chose the pattern Julie provided in the class as I really liked the pattern in this one and knew it would be a nice challenge.

  Here's how it started:


   And after lots of carving, test printing and more carving:

   It just needed a bit of fine tuning and it was finished. Time for making my tags for Lenna Andrews (who's also participating in the class and doing a tag project with me) and myself! Once we are finished with our class and the carvings we are sending each other the collection of tags and we'll each have a nice fat tag book with all our individual carvings. What a really great way to take a class with a buddy and have a beautiful sampler of all our work, don't you think?

 For the base of the tags I used acrylic paints in orange and lime green and stamped my damask with Jet Black Staz-On ink to create a pattern.

  I simply added the sentiment (unfortunately I have no idea where this UM stamp is from) and embellished the tags with some pretty metallic and purple strands and a silver feather charm from ARTchix Studio.

  Lesson 7 involves carving a complete alphabet and number set and before attempting it I thought I should practice and play a little more so I created these two stamps  and made two tags for Lenna and I.

   I knew I wanted to play with carving curves so I made a circle and a teardrop. I have to confess that I wanted the inner curves of the circle to be smooth but somewhere along the way my tool slipped a tad and I ended up with a notch in it. So, I chose to add notches around all the inner curves and am happy with its funky, imperfect curves. The rubber stamp sentiment is by Make an Impression. I also used it on the "leaves" by first inking the leaf with Staz-On Citrus Green then overstamping with the sentiment before  stamping the tag. The bottom is a bit of Tim Holtz tissue tape I inked up before adding at the bottom of the tag.

  And here's a second tag I made using the teardrop image which reminded me also of a rain drop:

   The sentiment is Stampers Anonymous. I repeatedly stamped the teardrop in Seashells Cloudy Blue ink and Marvy Matchables #12 Grey. I can't believe how old some of my stamp pads are but so long as they still have the ink I'll use them :). I finished the tag with some black and metallic threads and a gold charm which I "antiqued" with Staz-On jet Black ink to tone down the gold.

   If any of you have taken the class or have done some stamp carving, leave me a comment or email with your blog or link-I'd love to see. I also love being able to browse thru the Flickr group that's set up for this class-very impressive stuff!

   Now, if you love summer as much as I do, take a moment to step outside during the official solstice time with a glass of something cool and refreshing and offer your joy and gratitude for its wonder and beauty. 

 " Summer afternoon-summer afternoon... the two most beautiful words in the English language."
                                                                                                                  Henry James


  1. I love the drop stamp! I have to confess - I couldn't stand it anymore and had to go buy some rubber stamps to carve! I made a few and had a blast. Now to make more...

  2. I make my own patterned foam rollers but have always wanted to carve stamps. What do you carve into?

    1. I'm using Speedy Carve, a pink rubber made by Speedball as was recommended in class. it makes the carving go much smoother and won't crumble like other lesser known or older carving materials.

  3. And Happy Summer to you too dear Linda!

    What a joy it is to see your latest stamp carvings
    AND I must confess I would be a little intimidated to carve an entire alphabet ... even a word seems daunting ... I think there is no stopping you though :)

    the Speedy Carve does cut like butter, doesn't it!

    stay cool ... we are in the humid and hot cooker too here in VA

  4. what beautiful work Linda - the stamps you carved and all the tags, wow! I think you are really getting into this. I am so glad! I finished my bracket stamp yesterday and made tags today so they are now up on my blog. I just loved this post you wrote!

  5. I love your hand carved stamps!!Gorgeous!


Thank you so much for your comments; it's a pleasure to connect with you!