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Friday, October 12, 2012

Inspiration and the NC State Fair...

Hello, Stamping friends!

Deena asked me to guest post a while back, and at the time my stamping inspiration was just about non-existent. But, then I drove by a little boutique store, and inspiration struck!!! Did you know you can stamp on things other than paper? If you look on Etsy and other crafting web sites, you'll see ribbon wreaths and decorations are quite popular right now. Well, my sister just had my first nephew in September, and I saw the ribbons hanging in the store window, and inspiration struck! I had a really cute idea for a stamping project using ribbon and stamping. I must admit that the project ended up being much more than I bargained for, but I'm happy with the result.


What do you think?

I found some wide white grosgrain ribbon, and cut it into strips of about 15" or so. I laid 6 strips vertically next to one another on my grid paper and taped them down with removable adhesive. Then I stamped the word "baby" with one letter per ribbon. I also stamped butterflies, bugs, flowers, swirls across all 6 of the ribbon strips. Initially, the stamping was very trial and error. Regular classic ink and markers (even Sharpies) bled through the ribbon, and the crispness of the image was lost. So, I ended up using Chocolate Chip Craft Ink. I also had to dust off my Stamp-a-ma-jig, so that I could stamp each image multiple times in the same place. If I didn't, the images weren't dark enough. I let them dry overnight, but craft ink sits on top of the ribbon surface, so handle carefully because a little may still rub off.

Once the ribbons were stamped, I cut a length of bendable jewelry wire that would fit around the top of my white lamp shade (leave some extra at the end so you can bend the ends of the wire into hooks). I also cut strips of varying lengths of colored ribbon in differing widths, and assembly began. I just laid the end of each ribbon over the wire, folded it over, and pinched the ribbon together and tied each one using elastic clear fishing line. By doing it this way, I could easily adjust the length of each piece longer or shorter by sliding the tie down a little, pulling on the end of the ribbon, and then sliding the tie back up tight. Once I had all the ribbons tied off, I took a long piece of the same clear elastic fishing line, and wrapped and tied it on the jewelry wire between each ribbon piece, all the way around (this helps to keep the ribbons from sliding around and underneath one another). To finish it off, I bent the wire ends into hooks, and cut off the excess wire (I bent the hooks so they would lay as flat against the lamp shade as possible). I put one final white ribbon piece over the hooks and tied it up.

Here's what it looks like when the lamp is turned on...


I finished just in time to submit it for judging at the NC State Fair, and won 3rd place in the Professional Rubber Stamping Not-A-Card category! Next year, I challenge all of you to enter your inspired stamped creations into your State or Local Fair! I bet you'll win ribbons too!!!

Until next time, Happy Crafting!!!
-Merri Jensen

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