rubber stamps

Rubber Stamping // Gift Tags

Rubber Stamping // Gift Tags

Rubber stamping is one of my many obsessions. It all started when I was 16 and my High School art teacher taught us how to carve stamps out of erasers. I was fascinated with the patterns I could create by just repeating the stamp on paper and fabric. Thanks to Mrs. Thornton, patterns and textiles became my life’s work… I am always daydreaming about patterns, patterns, patterns.

This past year I have been creating my own rubber stamps. I eventually want to print fabric with them, but for now I’m just fooling around on paper to see what I can come up with. These gift tags were easy and so fun to make (for me, at least).

Here’s what you need:

Rubber stamps (Paper Source has some good ones)

Ink pads (by Colorbox)


Hole punch

Corner rounder

Ribbon (see sources below)

The key to a good pattern is all in the cropping. With a more organic shaped stamp, make sure to turn the stamp in different directions. It’s ok to overlap colors. With a geometric stamp you could either do a random pattern or try something more structured. When the ink is dry, use scissors or a cutting board to crop the sides. It’s amazing how the pattern comes to life after you chop off the sides. It tricks your eye into thinking it’s part of a larger pattern. So cool!

Thread ribbon from the back, then through the loop and tighten. I find my ribbon from many places: Sundance, Etsy, and wholesale at May Arts and Renaissance Ribbon.

I went a bit crazy with this project so I decided to make little packets of tags for hostess & teacher gifts. I’m glad I stocked up on glassine bags and labels!

Go ahead…try it!


Handmade Baby Shower Invitation

Handmade Baby Shower Invitation

This week I’d been given the distinct honor of creating a baby shower invitation for my SIL, the esteemed Marysue Rucci of Simon & Schuster. Lucky me! After hours of late night thinking and scouring, I finally decided on a theme: Shabby Chic. I have had an obsession lately with rubber stamping, flag bunting, and washi tape. Combining these elements was soooo much fun. I knew the mommy-to-be would be decorating her baby girl’s room in yellows with a touch of pink, so the color choices had been made. Planning and execution were my biggest hurdles.

Here’s how it went down (I’ve included the bunting template for you)…

The type on this invitation was created entirely with custom made rubber stamps. The invitation copy was one rubber stamp. The envelope front and back were each a rubber stamp. And I even made a rubber stamp of just my SIL’s name so that I could create thank-you notes for her as a gift.

I designed the yellow flower cards and sent them out to be printed. I then used pink ink and stamped each card individually. It was quite a bit of work, I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone. But I really wanted an authentic hand stamped look, and I’m a little bit crazy, so there you go!

To create the flags, I did some measuring. The card was 4.5″ wide, and the washi tape was 5/8″ wide, so I calculated fitting five flags across. I created a row of triangles, each triangle measuring the width of the tape. I used a faint line so that you wouldn’t see it if my cutting wasn’t up to snuff (hopefully you can see it in these photos!).

Next, I cut out the strips and laid them beneath the pre-cut pieces of string. (This photo above shows one, but I actually did several at a time).

Then I very carefully placed the tape over the paper, making sure that it fit perfectly over the triangle, and going over the top of the string. After I taped all five triangles, I pulled up the string from the table and flipped the tape over to the back.

IMPORTANT: When flipping the tape over the back, make sure that the string is secured just above the paper, not pushed over to the back. This will be crucial when cutting.

Time to cut the flags! This was really fun. I just followed the lines of the triangles underneath the tape. I clipped as close to the top edge as I could without cutting the string.

Next, I got out my exacto knife and a ruler. I made two teeny nicks on the edges of the card, using the ruler as a guide and a straight edge. This allowed me to slip in the string and hold it in place. I then tied the back, trimmed the string, and I was done!

Creating invitations by hand is one of my favorite things to do! Especially when it’s for someone I love so dearly.


A Japanese Rubber Stamp Kit

A Japanese Rubber Stamp Kit

We love making patterns here at home. My kids’ early childhood roots are firmly planted in the rich and beautiful land of Montessori materials. This, along with their mother’s love of prints and textiles, has provided them with many years of creating and recognizing patterns or every kind. Whether visual, auditory or tactile, they are always delighted to point out a pattern they’ve found!

This stamp kit by Tokyo based Torafu Architects is everything you need to get your kids started in making their own patterns. The shapes are simple and beautiful, as Japanese designs always are. Use the stamps to create anything, from cards to wrapping paper to wall art!

I discovered this set on ebabee LIKES‘ beautiful blog. You can purchase your own set at Oeuf NYC. I can’t wait for ours to come in the mail!