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There are many different types of stamps out there, not only in design, but in functionality. There are two main types of stamps in the crafting world – rubber and clear – both of which have their own benefits of use. Stamps are also available mounted to a stamping block or left unmounted. Below, we describe the pros and cons of each.
The first thing you should consider when buying stamps is whether you should purchase mounted ones or unmounted ones. Here's a little description of each:
Unmounted stamps are generally better if you lack storage space as they don't have an acrylic block attached to them. Instead, they have a self-cling back to stick onto a reusable stamping block of your choosing - they can then be detached and stored back on the stamp sheet alongside your other stamps.
Mounted stamps, on the other hand, come pre-glued onto a wooden stamping block; these stamps are generally more straightforward with fewer extra components to consider, but can be a little pricier.
There are many advantages and disadvantages of using rubber and clear stamps, however you must decide what the most important qualities are for you. Here's a list of their key attributes:
Rubber stamps have designs deeply etched into them, are fixed onto a foam material and then mounted to a stamping block. Rubber is a strong, durable material that can withstand a lot of wear and tear as well as high temperatures, so is especially good if you're looking to use more advanced techniques. These stamps are also available as cling stamps which follow the same procedure, minus the wooden block - you'll have to mount this to an acrylic block yourself. The main advantages of rubber stamps are as follows:
Clear stamps are generally made from clear photopolymer or acrylic, and are entirely transparent so that you can see exactly where you're placing them. These stamps are unmounted, however they come with an adhesive back and are stuck onto a cling sheet, ready for you to peel off and mount onto a block - you'll then store the stamps back on the original sheet. The main advantages of clear stamps are as follows:
If you'd prefer to have aspects of each stamp type, some brands do produce rubber cling stamps. These stamps are a rubber image on a backing sheet with a cushiony material that sandwiches between the stamp and an acrylic or wooden block, thus providing the best of both worlds!
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