Recently I came across this awesome Christmas wrapping idea courtesy of Poppytalk, which inspired me to make my own wrapping paper. I love her use of white on brown packing paper (so pretty!) but wasn’t sure that a) my DIY skills would extend to making and mounting my own rubber stamp, or b) that I could justify spending so much money on making the paper, neglecting the actual gifts inside.
So I embarked upon a mission to make a budget-friendly version. By substituting a proper lino pad and wooden mounting block for a jumbo eraser (shh!) I cut the price for the stamp alone down from £14 to £3.25! And it’s also incredibly easy to do. Seriously, if I can do a good job of it, anybody can.
First of all you need to choose your design. I just googled ‘stag head silhouette’ and found this cute stencil on a blog called New Nostalgia. Once you’ve printed or drawn a design you like, cover it with some greaseproof paper and trace the outline with a pencil. Then flatten the greaseproof paper pencil-side down onto the eraser and use the wood of the pencil (or anything else you can find) to gently rub it, transferring the design onto the rubber.
When the design is transferred to the eraser it will be reversed, so flip the image before printing/drawing if this bothers you.
Done! Now you need to cut out your design. I started with the smallest and sharpest knife in the kitchen drawer. Begin by removing all the biggest chunks of eraser, as these don’t require too much precision. Then you will need to switch to something smaller to carve out the more detailed areas. I used a craft knife I’ve had in my drawer for about five years (similar to this one), but use your imagination. The rubber isn’t very hard so you shouldn’t need anything too fancy.
Congratulations, your stamp is finished! Now comes the fun part – putting the design onto paper. It’s fairly self-explanatory: gently push the stamp into the ink pad a few times, check for an even coating, then press onto the brown paper.
I was SO chuffed with how this came out! Now you can just ink and stamp the same design at even intervals across the paper. I initially wanted to measure the paper and mark out where to put each stag, but I found that pencil repelled the ink and was very visible – so be careful when doing this.
The ink should be dry within an hour or so, after which you can cut it to size, wrap your presents and add the green ribbon.
And there you have it! Makes a nice alternative to the shop-bought wrapping papers, don’t ya think?