Sometimes I hoard supplies. If you watched my office tour, you'll probably have seen that. Sometimes I hoard supplies for like ages - pretty sure this project I'm sharing today is made with supplies I've had since college. So that means I've had the supplies for this for 5 years. Not all the supplies, but the main ones.
Today I want to share with you a really fun DIY using erasers to make stamps. I've always wanted to carve up these little erasers that I've had for 5 years but I never found inspiration to do so. Then I saw a cactus on Pinterest and suddenly the light bulb went off. Here's how to do it:
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supplies // white rubber eraser, linoleum cutter, box cutter/knive, pencil, pen, stamp ink, cardstock, thin tipped marker
The type of eraser used for this product is important. You'll need a really good rubbery eraser - not the pink ones, not the brown ones that crumble easy, but an eraser that will stand up to being carves. I used this brand but as it is super crazy expensive on Amazon, I suggest looking in the art/drawing supply section of your craft store to find this sort of eraser. This is key because not all erasers are made the same.
Start with a sketch of how you'd like the cactus to look. I realized that pretty much this cactus is just a repeating shape in varying sizes. Practice drawing the shape you'd like a few times until you get the hang of it. The shape is pretty much a U shape fattened at the curve and narrowed at the tips connected by another, smaller arc.
Using the box cutter, carefully chop the erasers into two parts. Don't cut them directly in half - make sure you have four different sized eraser parts when it is all said and done.
On each bit of eraser, draw the fattened U shapes in varying sizes using the pencil. Don't be afraid to change the shape up, after all you are drawing with pencil on an eraser so you can rub the marks off!
Once the shapes have been drawn, use the linoleum cutting tool to trace and carve out the images. You want to carve away the negative space. So carve around the outside of the shape you've made. Use the size 1 blade for detail and the size 3 blade to remove bigger chunks of eraser. Use the size 1 blade to make little divots to represent the cactus needles. Be careful, this tool is very sharp so be careful not to stab or cut yourself.
After carving out the designs, use the box cutter again to carefully narrow down the shape. Don't cut too much off...cut just enough off so you will be able to better guess where you are stamping the image. Again, be careful here!
When you are satisfied with your stamps, choose your ink and do a test stamp. I found that my Memento Dye Ink did not work as well as the Chalk Ink I had. But play around with your inks to see what works best for you. Do a few test stamps to see how you'd like your cacti to look and figure out the best pressure to use with each stamp. Then move on to stamping on the paper of your choice.
I chose to stamp on some off white card stock after drawing little pots with a black fine tipped marker.
These are great for framing, for sharing, for use as a pocket scrapbooking element, etc. If you have a bigger eraser you can carve a bigger stamp but these are perfect for 3 x 4 and 4 x 6 inch size prints. I love these guys and really want to use these in a spread in my Memory Planner!
Hope you enjoyed this little DIY!