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

Rubber Art Stamping & Card Making.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Those expensive stamp cleaners.....

We've all bought them- all the branded ones, especially the Staz-on cleaner, 'cos its the only one that removes Staz-on ink! And none of them are cheap, are they, no matter who makes it? When you look at what we pay, compared to the quantity in the bottle, its got to be one of the most expensive liquids on the planet. Actually I just did a little research- the bottle I had (Inkessentials, since you ask)  is an average of £3.50 a bottle, which contains 113ml. That works out to £29.70 a litre.And thats one of the cheaper brands. Staz-On is even worse,56ml for around £4.50- or £81 a litre. So whats all this leading up to, I hear you ask.
 Well, I've been seeing lots of recipes for homemade stamp cleaners around, and kept meaning to try one out. I even bought most of the ingredients, just not got round to doing it. By most of, I mean two, it only needs 3, or 4 if you want to perfume it.
Well, today I finished off my bottle of cleaner, so it seemed the ideal time to try it out.
What you need:
 A spray bottle
Baby Wash
Distilled Water
Optional: Rose Water
I admit right now that I never got around to buying the distilled water. Its available from chemists, by the way. I used water from my water filter jug, I figure thats taken all the nasties out of it, and I was only making up enough to fill my bottle, not  a huge amount to store.
 As well as regular stamp cleaner, this is my usual stamp cleaning kit:
Baby wipes for most ink removal, they deal with dye inks easily.
Staz-on cleaner, a toothbrush, a paint pad and an old towel.
 One thing the baby wipes don't work for, besides Staz-on, is Versafine.
Most of the recipes I found give quantities for making up at least a pint, and like I say, I only wanted enough for one bottle, so this recipe is winging it a bit- no exact quantities were used, but I don't think it really matters.
After I'd rinsed out the bottle, I added about half a teaspoon of glycerine. I think this was about 50p a bottle. This, and Rosewater can be found in the baking aisle in the supermarket, as well as chemists.
 Next I poured in about an inch of  Baby wash- mine came from Aldi, about 80p. Now I just topped it up with filtered water, put the lid back on and rolled it back & forth to mix. Don't shake it, you'll end up with a pressurised bottle of foam!
 And thats it. If you want to add rosewater to perfume it, do that just before you add the water, but I thought the Baby wash smell was perfectly acceptable.

 So, now the acid test. Is the mix any good, and does it work?
I inked up the stamp with Black Versafine.

Stamped the image off onto scrap, and gave it a spritzing with the cleaner, and went over it with the toothbrush.

Wiped it off with the towel, and...WOW! I think its cleaner than before I inked it!

So then I was curious- what was the likelihood of it removing Staz-on? Not very high, to be honest. Its a solvent based ink, right?
So, I inked it again, and I tried this twice, once stamping the image off first, and once with a full coat of  Staz-on on the stamp. Again, I gave it a scrub with the toothbrush, and I was amazed to see the Staz-on come off! Both times, no problem.

And of course, apart from how cheap this is, the real beauty is that it won't damage your acrylic blocks like Staz-on Cleaner does. This is the damage caused to acrylic blocks by Staz-on cleaner, before I knew about what it did. Now I save them for cleaning any stamps that needed Staz-on removed.

 So, my two ingredients cost me less than £1.50, and I'd say I will be able to refill my bottle dozens of times before either one runs out. I'm guessing my bottle of stamp cleaner just cost me less than 10p!

 Just a quick add-on, I've been calling it Baby Wash from all the recipes I read being almost entirely American! Its what we in the UK call Baby Bath. I did find a recipe or two that used Dove shower gel instead, I think the idea is that it needs to be a liquid soap that is as free from chemicals as possible, so there is actually quite a bit of scope for what you use.


Sally H said...

Oh wow, Shaz! Thanks for this! I will be trying it out tomorrow after a trip to the supermarket!

Cazzy said...

Wow what a result Shaz, I think I will be giving it a go, I have some organic natural baby wash here, I wonder if that works as well as the normal stuff, though the normal stuff might be a bit cheaper.

Cazzy x

MaggieC said...

I like it Shaz. I will have to get some baby wash. I think I have some glycerine in the kitchen cupboard. I tend to use babywipes apart from the Splodge mat (never use baby wipes on that), and nail varnish remover. Not tried that on Staz On though. Will let you know how that works. xx Maggie

Kathy Przeniczny said...

Hi Shaz, This looks like a great idea. Baby wash? we don't call it that here, over the pond LOL I assume that is the liquid soap that you would add to baby's bath water, right?
Thanks for the tip.

Winnie said...

oh, I will have to try this. I have 4 different cleaners, and my problem is the scents. I have all Ranger products and their cleaner is "bubblegum" scent and makes me gag and a few other brands are so harsh in scent. I have such bad allergies. I will have to locate the glycerin at the drug store, but it will be worth it! Thank you for sharing!

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

Brilliant results! I must admit I love my scrub pad, especially in class, because it dries the stamp off after cleaning. I found wet wipes sometimes foamed up a bit, making it difficult for the next person to re-ink straight away. I'd always used them at home though. Out of interest I had to see what my cleaning spray cost per litre. Pretty steep at £32!

Monique said...

Great idea, I will try it right away, because my stamps look horrible...
xx Monique

Kathy Przeniczny said...

thanks Shaz for your reply on my blog. I don't always comment but love the variety your work Kxx

fairy thoughts said...

Great recipe Shaz but I didn't know I needed to clean my stamps hehe doh Iight have a go though

Julie Ann Lee said...

This is sooo helpful! Thank you, thank you - thank you! Julie Ann xx #42

glitterandglue said...

Goodness - that is some result - and what a mess the original has made of your acrylic blocks. Well done.
Have a great week.
Margaret #37

Roberta B said...

that is just to funny spiders size of dinner plates.. lol Thanks so much for the peek, and always bright blessings. Roberta #40

gardenpinks said...

Shaz thanks for the recipe, bought the 'ingredients' today so now to make it up - hope our spring water will be okay :)

Lynn xxx

Eliza said...

Read your former post and was awed, this one is just as surprising. Thank you for your hints, it certainly leaves the mind thinking.

Hugs Eliza

Marianne said...

um. . . about Staz-on cleaner damaging your blocks? I solved that problem by taking the stamp off the block before I clean it.
But I do Love the recipe for home-made cleaner. Thanks

Debs Willis said...

Great post! Can't wait to try this (well, next week some time lol!!) and one of my acrylic books looks like that - didn't know it was staz on doing that!

Debs x

Fiona said...

Brilliant - will definitely give this a go! Thanks for sharing :)

Hettie said...

Well done Shaz on doing the ground work. Every little helps doesn't it these days!