When I started stamping and Crafting a few years ago, there was no-one to give me tips and point me to the best places to get specific supplies or even which supplies to use for what. I went to Michaels and just purchased some stuff and jumped in. As the world of cardmaking, stamping, scrapbooking, and art journaling opened up for me I found my favorite places to get supplies, information, and inspiration and hope that this helps you whether a newbie or an old-timer looking to exchange info.
I will continue to add to this list and would like to link to others reviews of their most used, best value products for when you first start out making things with paper. So please add your comments to share with the group. On that note, let’s get started.
First off is Inks…
Different inks accomplish different things and react differently on different substrates (papers, materials). To keep this simple when you are new to stamping there are two kinds of ink you are going to want to invest in first. Dye Inks and Pigment Inks.
Dye Inks dry very quickly and may look uneven when first stamped, but the color will even out when drying. My favorite dye inks are the Simon Says Stamp and Hero Arts Dye inks. Both have a huge variety of colors and work best with smooth cardstock or a more absorbent paper that allow the ink to soak into it. The smoother the paper the crisper the imprint you will have. If you are going for a more vintage or softer look, then a watercolor or more absorbent paper like letterpress works well. Color and paper are creative decisions for the project you are working on. Dye inks give a very crisp impression and sink into the paper, some are waterproof and archival and others are not. If you want to watercolor over a stamped image then Ranger Archival Inks are great, and for Copic marker coloring so that the black will not bleed from the alcohol markers you will want to use Memento ink.
Pigment Inks stay wet and sticky longer and are used when you want to use embossing powder with them. They can also be used to color with using a small make up blender or your finger, they blend well and sit more on top of the paper. My favorite set of pigment inks at the moment are from Mama Elephant, such beautiful colors!
Not to be forgotten are Distress Inks. These are water-based inks that blend and mix when used with water. The colors blend beautifully, and they can be stamped with as well as used for rich backgrounds and then sprayed with water for different effects.
There are many project videos that show how to use distress ink to add different looks to a project such as watercolor, water splotches, spatters or vignettes or antiquing.
I have posted some links here to my favorite inks and places to purchase them and get them delivered quickly. It seems that the industry sometimes has a hard time keeping up with all the frantic stamping going on out there, so if one site is out you can always look to another or get on the Simon Says Stamp notify me list, that seems to work well.