A warm welcome to all my visitors,

Thank you for taking the time to come and look at my blog, I really do appreciate it. Please leave me a comment, even if it’s just to say Hi. It means I can come visit you!

All my designs are original, so copyrighted to me. If I have been inspired by someone elses work, I have named them in the post, and where able, I have provided a link.

Please feel free to use my designs for inspiration, I just ask you to credit me, and provide a link back to my blog.

Thanks, Shaz XX

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Making your own ink blending tool

So, following on from my mass un-mounting, I saved a few wooden blocks, with the intention of making myself some more blending tools.The  blocks I saved were mainly about the same size as the original blending tool,and one or two small squares.
           You could use the blocks as they are, but I wanted some handles on mine, so a visit to B & Q yielded these:

  Small wooden handles, a pack of ten was £9- you can get a similar handle in plastic for about a fiver.You can see they come with screws, so Beloved Hubby drilled through the blocks for me (probably safer than me doing it), and screwed on the handles.
A bit of wood filler over the holes, then left to dry overnight. I sanded them off the next morning- wood filler can be quite hard, so I improvised with an old foot- file I keep with my polymer clay stuff :), finished off with some sandpaper.

Next bit was to add Velcro, and a good cheap source for this is market stalls- especially if you are not fussy about the colour- black & white are the ones most people buy, so if you look round you will often find other colours a lot cheaper. This one I used is a sort of flesh colour, and cost me about 25p a metre- although I still always ask for a yard of something, lol. Gets me some odd looks.

So I cut some pieces to fit the blocks- and you want the 'hook' side for this,(the stiffer, rougher side) not the loop (the fluffy one). I used a hot glue gun to attach this to the block, and I found it was better to do two sides, attach the velcro, then do the other two sides. Press down well, especially the corners.

I tidied them up after, cutting away any excess glue.What I haven't done with these is add a layer of foam, which the original blending tools have. I figure they are going to have a foam pad attached, so don't need it. If I'm going to use felt & alcohol ink, then I'll use my originals. I had a browse around the net before I started, and it seems some people do add the foam, some don't.

  One lady's video I watched had a couple of ways of attaching the Velcro. One method was to run some foam through a Xyron machine both sides. Her other method was to use the double sided foam sticky tape- I got mine from Poundland. I used this on the little blocks, and it works well. The Velcro sticks to it without a problem.I trimmed some narrow Velcro down to fit, cutting the edge off both pieces so it would grip all over.

I tidied it up after, trimming any overhang away with a scalpel.

So here are all my new blending tools:
A later edit:
 I recommend stapling your velcro to the wooden block, rather than using the foam tape. I found it started to lift after peeling foams/felts off a few times.


Krisha said...

Great tutorial. I'm not sure what I did with all the wood when I un-mounted my 300 + stamps. I think they are in a box in the top of garage. I did make shadow stamps ( when that was popular)Now I need to find those blocks, I love the idea of a handle. I have loads of fun foam and the stiff felt that would work. Thanks for sharing!

stampinganja said...

Thanks for sharing. great idea!

Li'l Pidge said...

Brilliant idea. I love bargains from markets and iron mongers....so much cheaper than craft shops!


Anonymous said...

Great idea Shaz and saves pounds :) Can't be bad!
Lynn xx

Samantha Elliott said...

Great idea Shaz and much cheaper than some others around. You know which ones I mean!
Still don't think I could unmount my wooden stamps! Or maybe some of my non loved ones!

Robin Spitzer said...

Thanks Shaz! Great ideas, hubbie came in yesterday asking where the blocks were so he could start drilling, that's when I realized my blocks were the wrong size, he is going to try and cut them down..

okienurse said...

clever girl! I didn't put handles on my blocks I just use them as is! I decided to use the self adhesive velcro also but after a few months it started letting go each time I pulled the foam bit off so I took my staple gun and stapled the velcro to the block and haven't had a bit of problems since. Thanks for popping by my desk and leaving a comment! It means a lot to me! Have a great week. Vickie #43

Shoshi said...

This is sooo cool, Shaz! I've made some with my old wood blocks after ummounting my stamps, too, but I never thought of putting handles on them! They look brilliant! Well done.


Morti said...

I guess this must be your WOYWW for this week! Great idea on how to use up the wood blocks - I really need to get on and do similar with my collection to be honest, so thanks for the inspiration on what to do with them next.

Thanks for stopping by...

Morti said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wether said...

Hi! Nice article, thanks!
I have a couple of questions, if you don't mind: first, now that you've been using them for a couple of months, how do you feel about leaving off the foam that the TH version has? (Do you secretly have a TH 'proper' tool that you use on the very best stuff? Hehe :) )

Second, and only slightly off topic - why did you decide to unmount all your wooden stamps (and, I'm starting to gather, possibly re-mount them?) I had a look back through your posts to see if you'd mentioned, but perhaps it was a plan from ages ago.

Lovely blog, by the way, most interesting, and entertaining. A bit like a crafty Gerald Durrell... ;-)

momof5sons said...

Wonderful idea and superb tutorial. I should get busy on this project while I'm stuck inside!