Yesterday I was reading my weekly email from Splitcoast when I noticed an ad for a contraption called the Stampcritter. This little puppy apparently lets you make your own clear stamps from polymer. WOW.
The downside? The price. And actually, it isn't that much for the machine itself. The machine runs about $250, which doesn't seem all that bad considering the cost of other larger paper crafting tools on the market. The kicker is that the consumables are also expensive. (The machine comes with some polymer to get you started, but you'd have to buy refills pretty soon.) Enough polymer to make 100 square inches (that's not much more than a full 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper) is $40. You can also buy larger quantities, with a definite price break in the price per square inch. Still, the price of the consumables leaves me wondering about the mechanics of the machine. I couldn't find any information about the smallest amount of polymer that is used at one time. Like, if I want to make a small 1"x1" stamp, do I have to make a full sheet, thereby wasting much precious polymer? Or do I just use enough polymer to make that one little stamp?
Of course, I wasn't the only one all atwitter at the thought of making my own stamps. I found a thread in the Splitcoast forums about the Stampcritter. There was much buzz, but as of yet no one had tried it. One brave soul has ordered the machine. I subscribed to the thread so as to get a full report as soon as one is posted. In the meantime, someone in the thread posted a link to instructions on how to make your own polymer stamps without using any special little machine.
WOWZA. There are a lot of steps, but they seem pretty straightforward. And each step is accompanied with a photograph. At the end they have a catalog of supplies you can order from them. What I liked is that they broke the price down for each item to show how much it costs for each stamp you make. Even down to the little cotton swabs! It totally pleased the OCD part of my personality. I also liked that they pointed out when the same supplies could easily be purchased at a local craft or hardware store.