Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sharon Briss: Bending Acrylic to Your Will

The most apparent, or should I say transparent, benefit of acrylic or polymer stamps is their ease of use in specific positioning of images. We all have know the feeling of disappointment when an image or a sentiment doesn't end up quite where we expected.

Beyond that, most people don't really consider their acrylic stamps to be any different than their rubber stamps. One amazing and often overlooked quality of acrylics is that they are pliable and thus can be manipulated to a degree.

Flower stamps are an easy category to bend to your will. Take this Poppy image from Flourishes. The Poppy stands staight and tall and lovely and pointing to the left.

The card I had planned would not accomodate the full standing height of the poppy, so I bent the stem around the sentiment and reduced the overall length of the image.

The final stamped image turned out quite nicely. The poppy is more bent over and nicely frames the sentiment.
Here is the final version of the card. You can see why I wanted to show off as much of the designer paper as possible.

Hoppy Poppy
Poppy and sentiment from Poppy set (Flourishes)
Paper: Debbie Mumm (Creative Imaginations)
Cardstock: Real Red & Whisper White (Stampin Up)
Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Copics: various

In the second example, I wanted to recreate a card I made awhile ago for a challenge. One thing I had remembered about making the original card was that I had to go back and do a lot of fiddly trimming to create the layout I wanted. The original has a wonderful arc but for this project that arc would have to be decreased and straightened a bit to avoid all the post-stamping cutting.

I realized that had the actual image been a little more upright, I could have more easily stamped it onto the size of panel that I wanted to use.

Rather than curve a stamp this time, I straightened it out a bit. I left a little bend in the stem to create a more natural appearance.

The final stamped image turned out just the way I wanted and positioning the stamp on the paper was a lot easier!

Tulip Trio Revisited
tulip from Tulip set (Flourishes)
Cardstock: Brilliant Blue, Brocade Blue, Mellow Moss & Whisper White (Stampin Up)
Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Copics: various
Embellishments: 2 black photo corners

Once you have manipulated a few of your acrylic stamps, you can see all the possibilities clearly.

~ Take a border and bend it into a wave or even a lovely crescent!

~ We all know that acrylic alphabets let us position letters around curves, but what about taking actual word stamps and doing the same thing?

~ There are now wheel tools that are specially designed to hold onto acrylic stamps so that you could customize a rolled border to perfectly correspond with your project without buying additional stamps. ClearSnap, makers of Colorbox ink, makes a clear roller called the Get Rollin' Acrylic Wheel under their Memory Essentials brand.

For more tips on acrylic stamps, check out this article on Blockhead Stamps. It has some great information.

If you have a chance to bend your acrylic to your will, let us see what you have created by leaving a comment on this post with a link to your creation.


  1. Love the card with the poppy "protectively" curving around the sentiment. That DP is adorable. What line is it and do you remember your Copics colors? The poppy caught my eye first, and then the paper (lol).

  2. I'm impressed! Where do you get the acrylic that's blocked into lines like that?

  3. Hi!

    Wanted you to know I posted a link to this tutorial today on my blog, PaperFriendly.

    Nancy Ward

  4. This is really neat. Never thought of doing it but will try this weekend. thanks.


Thanks for your wonderful words!

Other Articles Which May Interest You:

Blog Widget by LinkWithin