Friday, July 5, 2013

Fake it Fridays. #1 Stamp Cleaners


Hi, today is the first post in the series;
"Fake It Fridays".  I hope to bring you, my viewers, many interesting, time and money saving tips and ideas.  I am calling it "Fake It Fridays" because for one it is a catchy title, and two, because these posts will be about ways to make your own tools or supplies instead of feeling like you can't get ahead in your project because you don't have the latest product in your studio/craft area.
 Before we begin I want to make it clear that I have no intention on dissing any brand names or companies that make and sell similar products.  My goal is to help out those who want to do things a little differently either because they do not have access to, or the resources to get the commercial brand.  I started making art and crafting from a very young age, and we lived up and out in the woods, far far away from any towns or cities without full retail access, so we often had to make our own, and make do!  My resources and access have definitely improved since those years but I know that is not the case for many of you.  Plus, I love the DIY trend!

For the first post I am presenting you with my recipes for DIY stamp cleaning.  I like to take care of my rubber and clear stamps.  I want them to be ready to go for the next project and I want them to last, so I clean them.  Usually when I stamp I have a pad of news print that I stamp off as much ink after I am done stamping  images onto my project.  I also stamp off one or more images from my dirty stamps onto an art journal page for a future background.  Now, I like to spray some stamp cleaner onto a mat that has a pile texture like a paint pad or a cleaning pad.  I rub the stamp onto the damp pad and then I rub the stamp onto another similar but dry cleaning pad.  I let the stamp air dry before I put it back in its designated storage space.

I like to use my homemade cleaning solutions especially after using pigment inks.  I also have a homemade cleaning solution for regular or dye inks.

The third cleaner I use is plain water in a spray bottle.  I find that the spray helps dislodge any ink left in those detailed stamps quite well.  The fourth method I use is the good old baby or hand wipes!  I always carry a pack of those to crops and classes, they are so convenient.

The other reason I like to use my homemade spray cleaners is that they condition my stamps and keep them from drying out and cracking.

Here are my recipes (please note, that these recipes were given to me by other crafty people a long time ago and I have tweaked them to my liking).

Regular Stamp Cleaner:  In a bottle (preferably recycled) the size of a regular shampoo or hand dish washing detergent I pour 1 part soap (either an inexpensive dish soap or baby wash, something gentle), 1 part glycerin, 1 part alcohol (rubbing kind preferably the 99%, but another will work), and fill the rest of the bottle with clean water.  Mix to get a watery consistency, add more water if it is too thick.  Next, pour into smaller spray bottles (I recycle travel size body spray and hair spray bottles).

Staz On Cleaner:  Almost the same recipe as the regular cleaner with the exception of replacing the glycerin with Mineral Oil.


Note:  the Glycerin, Alcohol, and Mineral Oil can usually be found at your local pharmacy/drugstore.  You will not use a lot of each but the total cost will be less than if you did buy these cleaners commercially.  In addition you can use these products for other household cleaning and crafting recipes.

Now for the cleaning pads.  In the picture above I show the stamp cleaning pad I have had for years, I had this when I was a S.U. demonstrator.  But I have also made my own version using an empty travel size (recycled) baby wipes container and rough kitchen cleaning pads from the Dollar Store.  I also find that the fluffier yet stiff paint pads (they are usually sold with a red rectangular handle, intended for painting around window trims) sold at the same store work very well.  I glue two pads, one in each cover, and spray cleaner on one side and use the other side to dry my stamps.


I hope that you enjoyed this post and find this new series useful.  I would love to know what you think.  Please leave me a comment(below), and join my list to follow my blog(side bar).

Thanks for viewing.