Sunday, November 29, 2009

Digital Stamps

Digital stamps are one of my new, favorite crafting tools. Just like traditional stamps you have a great variety of designs and artists but generally digital stamps are right at your fingertips, inexpensive, and easy to store. And of course, anyone who knows me well, knows that I cannot make up my mind about the things I like. So I have two favorite companies to introduce to you....Regina Easter over at The Cutting Cafe (http://thecuttingcafe.typepad.com) and Tracey “Fred” Miller over at Fred She Said (http://www.fred-she-said.blogspot.com).


Let me show you just a few of the things you can do with the products created by these talented ladies.....

The above photo is a gift card holder I made using Regina's Teacher Printable Stamps “Just a little something from me to you ….Teacher”.

Above I used Regina's Family Traditions Printable “Baking Cookies for Santa” I especially love the sentiment tags that Regina offers over at The Cutting Cafe. I love doing gift baskets and they lend themselves beautifully to embellishing these.

I just wanted to give you a close up of the awesome tag that I used here. The cookies in the center print separately so you can color and pop dot them (like I did here) for dimension.


And moving over to Tracey's creations. I have to say, there is always one stamp set that you just simply fall in love with, and mine is Emma, one just never knows what Emma will be up to next (Helps that she reminds me of my own little girl, Emy.) Some of Tracey's images come with a black and white line drawing option or a color option and let me tell you either way is fun.

The cute little tag above was made using one of Tracey's colored images “Catchin' Flakes”. I simply traced my tag pattern around the image and tied a pretty bow at the top – it really is as easy as that.

The card above was made using Tracey's image “Emma and the Chickadee”. This image was not colored and I put it through my own 4 step process. First, I colored the image in colored pencil, pressing firmly and laying down lots of color, that color tends to smudge so I covered the entire colored area with Crystal effects to give it a shiney look. Then I colored in Emma's face with chalk (I think it's a more blendable and subtle look.). Third I added some Stickles to Emma's hair and the fur on her coat, and finally, I masked the entire colored image and dabbed the background with blue ink to help pop the colors and provide some background.


I've included a sheet of printable gift tags which you can use as a template or print out and stamp on yourself. I hope you'll have fun with them. And don't forget to stop in and see Regina and Tracey at their stores!



Advice from Tracey Miller on how to use digital stamps
:
For digital images, the easiest way to print your digital images is to use word processing software like MS Word or Open Office ( a free GNU Licence download). On a new page insert the image onto the page, you can resize and move the image, flip it, mirror, make more copies, and even recolour the outline.
For inkjets and colouring your images, to avoid smudging , good colouring mediums are chalks, pencils ( and odorless mineral spirits and paper stumps for blending) and alcohol based markers like Copics. Printer's inks are all different. If your printer uses a dye based ink you will be good to go as far as smudge-proof colouring. If you want to watercolour, try using an embossing heat tool and heat set your print or lightly spray with a fixatif like Krylon Preserve It Spray. If your printer uses 2 black cartridges or has a Photo Black cartridge option, the photo black cartridge is the cartridge you want to use as it is dye based. Printers with 2 blacks installed, try a glossy photo setting and the printer will use the photo black. If your printer uses only pigment inks, try a fixatif spray to seal the ink. Heat setting may or may not work with pigmented inks. Laser printers give the best smudge free prints for colouring and the laser sets the ink into the paper... these prints will even hold up to watercolouring.
Digital stamps work so well with paper piecing techniques. If your digital stamp comes as a PNG file with a transparent background, in Word or a graphics editing program, you can layer the image over top of digital paper. Or print the image directly on designer paper.


5 comments:

  1. these projects are so very cute! Thanks for sharing your tips for creating them!

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  2. I really love the cute digi stamps! Definitely need to get some! Thanks for sharing!

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  3. o0o0o0o CUTE!!!! tfs! :) i need to go find some digi stamps now. :)

    hugs,
    sarah.

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  4. Melanie, such a wonderful post! TFS

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  5. Such an amazing post Melanie! Thank you for sharing those links!!! I love your gift basket!

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