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View Poll Results: Stamp Preferences - Rubber or Clear?
Photopolymer or other clear stamps 37 31.09%
Unmounted rubber (w/wo tacky glue on back) 11 9.24%
Rubber with cling cushion (EZ Mount or similar) 48 40.34%
Wood-mounted rubber 23 19.33%
Voters: 119. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-22-2012, 02:23 PM   #1
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Default Stamp Preferences - Rubber or clear?

I've had wood-mounted rubber stamps forever, but have un-mounted all of them and use nekkid rubber with Sailor 2-in-1 Glue on the backs. I also have an extensive collection of photopolymer and other clear stamps. I've given cling-mounted stamps a whirl, as well. All of this has led me to wonder - what's YOUR preference? I realize that, like me, you may have quite a mix going, but - in a perfect world - what would ALL of your stamps be?
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Old 08-22-2012, 02:38 PM   #2
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I guess I really should start off my own poll! I wavered a bit between cling-mount and unmounted rubber, but went with unmounted in the end. I like the "viewability" of photopolymer stamps, but even my high-quality ones are showing signs of softening over time. Meanwhile, I have rubber stamps that are significantly older than the clear, and they show no differences at all from when they were new (except for some staining, perhaps)!
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:16 PM   #3
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I prefer the cling mount. I like that they take up less space and I love that I can put more than one on a block if I want 2-3 images next to eachother. I find it MUCH easier to use my alphabet stamps if they are on a block with lines!! Plus, and this may sound silly, but I do like the way the clear blocks feel in my hand! (SU blocks are my favorite!)
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:48 PM   #4
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I voted for cling mounted rubber. I have a mix of everything but rubber is my favorite and love it on cling mount. Now to get up the nerve and gumption to take my many wood mounts apart.
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:16 PM   #5
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I wish all my stamps were clear. Whenever I am looking at RUBBER stamps and find images that I like, I find that I have to keep reminding myself that these are opaque, not transparent and so if I bought them I would probably never use them, if they are the two-step kind, or scene builders, or have got any solid areas in them.

Now there are some stamps were it's okay that they're rubber, like if it's an image that I'd probably always cut out, or stamp first (like the bottom layer of a cake). But any stamps that are meant to build upon the first stamped image (like the top layer of cake) - for me those need to be clear. I know that one can use a stamp-a-ma-jig, but I detest using those and don't own one, 'cause if I did, I'd never use it.

I also detest using markers to ink up a stamp. I'd rather cut the stamp up so I can stamp the different parts of it on different coloured ink pads (instead of using markers). With clear stamps, I can cut up a stamp and stamping the separate parts is soooo easy.

Also, they take up soooo much less room than cling stamps.
I guess if a stamp HAS to be in rubber, I'd wish that the back of the rubber was already cling. Right now for space reasons, I prefer my rubber stamps to have no cling. Of course if space was not an issue, I'd prefer the cling. The cling stamps take up twice as much room as my naked rubber stamps. I unmounted all the wood from my stamps as well. Wow, what an eye opener. Now ALL of my stamps are within arm's length!!! Had I fully realized the impact this would have on my stamping life, I would've done it (unmounting) from the very beginning, even when space was not an issue ('cause no matter how much space I have, my arms are still short, and I am still lazy - so if a stamp is out of reach, chances are, I'll settle for another not-as-appropriate stamp).
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Old 08-22-2012, 05:56 PM   #6
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still prefer wood mounted rubber....I do buy a lot of unmounted rubber because the price is so much better.
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:30 PM   #7
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In a perfect world I would do all cling mount rubber. I have a lot of clear stamps that I bought when I started, but I have trouble getting a consistent image (user error, I'm sure.) Rubber just seems more consistent.
I do like being able to see through the clear, but I just use my stampamajig if I need to have exact placement.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:12 PM   #8
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I love my polymer stamps, but you can't get the degree of detail in polymer that you can in rubber.

And cling mounts are so easy to store and organize.

But, like everyone, I own and happily use everything. If I like an image, I will buy it, no matter what it's made of or how it's mounted.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:35 PM   #9
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This was hard to choose for me. I have tons of wood mounted stamps [almost 20 years worth] and love them but have switched to cling rubber or clear for storage reasons. I like the clear for the ease in placing them exactly where I want without using a stamp positioner but the images are almost always better with cling or wood mounted.
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Old 08-22-2012, 08:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachelrose View Post
I love my polymer stamps, but you can't get the degree of detail in polymer that you can in rubber.
With photopolymer stamps (Crafty Secrets, PTI) I have gotten amazing detail just as good as with my rubber stamps. Even with the cheaper non-photopolymer clear stamps (Penny Black, House Mouse, Inkadinkado) I have gotten amazing detail.
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Old 08-22-2012, 08:37 PM   #11
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I voted for cling mounted rubber, but wood mounted rubber would be OK too .
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:42 PM   #12
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I love it all, but do prefer cling mount rubber. I've unmounted most of my wood mount rubber stamps and am so glad I've done that. As for clear stamps, I have to use the right ink with them and they work well. I've even used liquid chalk with my clear stamps and have gotten great results.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:22 AM   #13
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I voted unmounted rubber as that's the way I buy any new stamps if that option is available. The only thing I will not buy now is wood mount - they just take up too much space (are you listening Stampotique?!).

I prefer rubber to clear because I like to have the option to do things like press my stamp into hot UTEE or use an iron to emboss velvet and I'm happier with the durability of rubber for that. High quality clear stamps are fine for detail etc though and if that's what a company does and I like their designs I'll buy them.

I prefer "naked" rubber to cling, again because of the storage issue. I can put stamps on both sides of a CD case and still close it if there's no cling mount so I'm effectively halving the amount of space needed to store them if I choose unmounted.
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:10 AM   #14
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Quote:
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still prefer wood mounted rubber....I do buy a lot of unmounted rubber because the price is so much better.
My thoughts exactly!
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:36 AM   #15
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Thanks to everyone who's commenting and voting - it's really interesting reading and is satisfying my curiosity, for sure! I'm only mildly surprised at the results - I sort of expected more people to be in love with clear stamps...
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:50 AM   #16
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I voted wood-mounted, because if space and budget weren't a factor, that's my ideal. Because of international shipping I usually buy unmounted as the cheapest option for shipping, and add my own EZ-mount.
Clear would come bottom of my list, really, in an ideal world.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:00 AM   #17
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I started stamping with wood mounts but soon realized two things...I was horrible at placement even with the stampamajig and they take up soo much space! Photopolymer caught my eye and I love it! Yes, I've had some go soft and sticky on me but I love that I can finally make an image look straight...for the most part I do buy rubber cling stamps too and yes I still buy wood ones, but those are mostly background stamps! In a perfect world mine would all be photopolymer!
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:14 AM   #18
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In order:

Wood mounted rubber
Unmounted rubber
Clear

I would buy ALL wood if I could afford them. But I buy most of my Stampin' Up! sets now as clear mount for the price difference. I like that they're still rubber, though, and not "clear" as I don't find that the clear ones stamp as nicely.
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:03 PM   #19
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Sophie - I remember you from a different thread regarding cutting up stamps - I do it, too - as well as lots of other threads, but had NO idea that you preferred clear stamps. Have you found any degradation in your stamps over time? Some of mine have gotten soft and a few have even torn. Very distressing, that!
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:21 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
Sophie - I remember you from a different thread regarding cutting up stamps - I do it, too - as well as lots of other threads, but had NO idea that you preferred clear stamps. Have you found any degradation in your stamps over time? Some of mine have gotten soft and a few have even torn. Very distressing, that!
Hi Sue!

I only just recently discovered clear stamps in March 2007??? So I THINK my oldest set is ONLY five years old!! That's still pretty young... so no. My first clear set (Stampington & Co) WAS actually high quality photopolymer and I just took it for granted - I wasn't amazed at the awesome detail or anything. I just expected it, and thought all clear stamps were like that. It wasn't until I bought some horrid non-photopolymer (Inkadinkado) stamps that I discovered that some clear stamps are horrid. My hands hurt for two days prying those stamps off the sheet!!! I swore never to buy the non-photopolymer ones again. But then they stamped just as well - with amazing detail. The defect wasn't in how they stamped; it was how they interacted with the clear sheet that they were stored on.

I THINK I might own a much older photopolymer set; a number set by PSX. It is clear, yellow photopolymer, and it is soft, and I ripped one narrow, long stamp while I was taking it off the block to put it away. I bought that set at a going-out-of-business sale where everything was 75% off. PSX had been out of business for a while (?) so I'm not sure how old that set was, but I got it around 2007 as well - my impression was that it was made loooooong before 2007, but I dunno.

Okay, okay, short answer: I haven't noticed any degradation BUT I haven't had them that long! Sorry for all the rambling!!
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:59 PM   #21
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I found this really interesting to read too! I'm all over the place, LOL!

First, I only started stamping in 2007 also and started purchasing photopolymer stamps shortly after that ~ I haven't noticed any changes in my stamps but I'm guessing they just aren't that old either.

Not that long ago, I would have said my ultimate favorite stamp would be cling rubber with an index of the image on the back of the foam if possible. But - like Sophie, that's okay for a "standalone" stamp - which is probably my favorite kind of image to use anyway. But sometimes I do want to combine and build patterns or scenes and that can be challenging.

I really prefer to use sentiments that are clear for ease of placement. I don't mind the Stamp-A-Majig but would rather not bother (wow - that sounds SO lazy!). I have found that using blocks with grids really helps - I can place the stamp, line it up with the grid, test stamp it on grid/lined paper, and tweak if necessary. Still - SO much easier if they are just clear.

I also have a lot of photopolymer stamps with amazing detail!! I don't see the distinction there.

Although, Joanne also makes a good point (I have NEVER read a post by Joanne that she doesn't make a good point - or several!!) ~ there are certain techniques I would only try with rubber.

Now... plain rubber vs. cling? I have a few blocks with Tack'n Peel and that suits me for my small number of "naked" stamps. (The only hard thing about that is if I'm really into it - there have been times I've been using multiple types of stamps and put clear on the Tack 'n Peel.. oops. They came off but I wasn't always sure they would!) I do like the cushion of the cling. But then they do take up more space.

The only time I buy wood-mounted is for those "very special" stamps I want in my collection - not something I would do with any regularity. Too. Much. Space.

Another consideration for me is just the pleasure of stamping. I remember the first clear stamps I used - Crafty Secrets - and (Sophie, you've probably heard me say this more than once!), I literally *gasp*ed when I stamped with one. I was AMAZED at the detail and sharp image. And then there's the magic of seeing the ink through the block as it transfers to the paper.

The bottom line (if there is one) for me is usually the image more than the form the stamp takes. If I have a choice between clear, bare rubber, or cling-mounted? Probably clear (photopolymer). Unless.....

I have enough variety in stamps now in each of these forms, that I'm pretty much covered. I did just make some purchases though and they were all photopolymer - with the exception of Stampers Anonymous by Tim Holtz... because they come in indexed cling so that's what I got! Happily
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:05 PM   #22
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Years ago I would have said only rubber (on cling).

Now that there are so many good quality clear stamps I'm good with clear or rubber. If my rubber comes on cling I use it that way. If it comes bare rubber I use it that way.
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:20 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angelnorth View Post
I voted unmounted rubber as that's the way I buy any new stamps if that option is available. The only thing I will not buy now is wood mount - they just take up too much space (are you listening Stampotique?!).
I think that's why I haven't actually ordered anything from them yet

I feel so wasteful buying wood mount, waste of the money and of the wood

I voted bare rubber for most of the reasons Joanne does.

I 'll buy clear but not the "yucky" kind that's not real photopolymer
and I'll buy cling too if I can't get bare and I'll use the cling, but I won't add cling to a bare rubber stamp, just tacky glue
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:53 PM   #24
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When I first started this hobby in 2006, I don't even remember that clear stamps were available - at least I didn't see them anyplace.

I bought lots of wood mounted stamps, some SU, some other brands, and some from the Dollar Bins at Michaels. I liked them all, and used them all.

Then - I discovered clear stamps, and that's all I have bought for the last couple of years.

I just love being able to see where I'm stamping, especially since so many dies have become available. I hardly ever use a wood mounted stamp these days.

I don't like the cling mounted because you can't see through them, so I haven't bought any.
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:55 PM   #25
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Thanks, Sophie (and others), for answering my question! I've had some of my clear stamps since around 2002 or so, so maybe a decade is about the life span of the stamps before they get fragile...? Seems a shame, when rubber NEVER degrades unless you don't take care of it properly! Still - I continue to buy the clear stamps if it's images I want/need. In fact, I just bought some Waltzingmouse stamps from Phantom (I'm so excited!)

Joanne - I agree with you in wishing that Stampotique offered unmounted rubber! That being said, the few that I have are the ONLY wood-mounted stamps I own that I haven't/won't unmount! They have permanent residence on display on a shelf above my stamping table, just 'cuz they make me smile every time I see them! I just consider them part of the decor...
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:10 AM   #26
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Glad I'm not the only one holding out against the temptation of Stampotique, it always feels better to have company! Several of their DT girls are online buddies of mine and I have tried applying a little pressure through them but it's done no good so far! There are designs I would definitely buy but I'm just not prepared to buy wood mount stamps, I'm afraid. I know I could buy them and unmount but that just seems wasteful all round.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:20 AM   #27
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Quote:
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Glad I'm not the only one holding out against the temptation of Stampotique, it always feels better to have company! Several of their DT girls are online buddies of mine and I have tried applying a little pressure through them but it's done no good so far! There are designs I would definitely buy but I'm just not prepared to buy wood mount stamps, I'm afraid. I know I could buy them and unmount but that just seems wasteful all round.

I bought three stamps once from Stampotique and I did unmount them and throw away the blocks. But it took soooooooooooooooo long for the stamps to get to me!!! It was something like three weeks (or more?)!!! I was used to orders arriving 3 or 4 days within placing an order. After two weeks, I emailed and they said they make their stamps to order. Maybe if they just didn't bother with the wood (or cling or foam), it might hasten the process of getting it to the customer!! I do love their stamps, especially Torrente's!!!
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:35 AM   #28
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Quote:
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I bought three stamps once from Stampotique and I did unmount them and throw away the blocks. But it took soooooooooooooooo long for the stamps to get to me!!!
I guess that's not the case here in the UK as people are ordering from a retailer who obviously has the stock in hand. I guess there are North American stockists where that would also apply but ordering direct sounds like it may not be the ideal!
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:10 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SophieLaFontaine View Post
I bought three stamps once from Stampotique and I did unmount them and throw away the blocks. But it took soooooooooooooooo long for the stamps to get to me!!! It was something like three weeks (or more?)!!! I was used to orders arriving 3 or 4 days within placing an order. After two weeks, I emailed and they said they make their stamps to order. Maybe if they just didn't bother with the wood (or cling or foam), it might hasten the process of getting it to the customer!! I do love their stamps, especially Torrente's!!!
Maybe it took so long because the company has outgrown the "made-to-order" model? I don't remember waiting that long for my stamps to come when I ordered (February 2011). I know I'm seeing more and more cards (and altered art) made with the Stampotique images lately. I only own five of their stamps so far, but but they are ALL Jill Penney/Daniel Torrente! LOVE their unique style...
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Old 08-24-2012, 06:11 PM   #30
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In an ideal world we would have clear rubber, but until then I will stick with clear as I never could line anything up properly even with all the gadgets.
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Old 08-24-2012, 07:14 PM   #31
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Sharon, "clear rubber" would be brilliant!!!
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:34 PM   #32
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In a perfect world I would love to have all of my stamps wood mounted with a picture of the stamp on one of the sides. I have a lot of cling mounted stamps and it always takes me a while to find the stamp I want, especially the sentiment. With a wood mounted stamp I would be able to find the stamp that I want right away. But my second choice is cling mounted rubber stamps. I just need to figure out a better organizing system for them to make my life easier.
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Old 08-25-2012, 05:24 AM   #33
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I see that unmounted rubber has the smallest number of votes... I suspect fewer of us have ever worked with stamps that way - I know I haven't - so I don't know how I would like it (or not).
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Old 08-25-2012, 05:47 AM   #34
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I've been stamping for nearly 20 years and was first introduced to clear stamps about 8 yrs ago. I immediately unmounted all my rubber stamps (well, it actually took quite a while!) and put them on cling foam for the space savings but most of the stamps I've purchased since then have been clear. In my perfect world all stamps would be clear. I rarely even use my rubber stamps anymore.
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:15 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachelrose View Post
I see that unmounted rubber has the smallest number of votes... I suspect fewer of us have ever worked with stamps that way - I know I haven't - so I don't know how I would like it (or not).
I'd recommend giving it a go if you see designs you like! You can put something like an old mouse mat, piece of fun foam or even a magazine under your cardstock before you stamp if you find you don't quite get a perfect impression first time.

I don't know what your style is but if you like vintge/retro I can tell you that Rogue Redhead stamps are extremely high quality and stamp beautifully (no cushioning required!). Most of my other UMs are from UK companies (Indigo Blu, Paper Artsy etc) so recommendations might not be as useful to you - not sure if they have US retailers. The other US manufacturer I have couple of sets from is Ma Vinci's Reliquary which is great but perhaps rather specialised (lots of fonts!) and the site's not very easy to navigate.

Apart from the advantage of taking less storage space, they're also lighter on the wallet
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:20 AM   #36
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I'm one of the few who prefers unmounted rubber. I call it bare rubber. I find that it's cheaper than any of the other options, so I can get more. Plus, it takes the least space to store. Win-win!
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:21 AM   #37
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I have trouble getting a consistent image (user error, I'm sure.)
I'm currently in the wood vs clear dilemna. Previously bought strictly wood. Now I'm getting a few clear. Also bought a Stamp-A-Ma-Jig to help w/placement of my old wood stamps. Watched a video on using clear stamps. Video's author suggests using a padded surface (like a mousepad) underneath your paper when stamping. Haven't done this yet, but plan to try it to see if it makes a difference.
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:58 AM   #38
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Joanne and Sue, what do you use for tackiness?

Thanks for those site links, both great.

I don't know what my style is either! So far it's what I like, and there doesn't seem to be any particular rhyme or reason to it. So I guess I'm... eclectic!
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Old 08-25-2012, 07:53 AM   #39
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Joanne and Sue, what do you use for tackiness?
I usually use a repositionable spray adhesive called Stick n Spray (they confusingly make one called Stick n Stay as well - avoid that one as it's permanent!). Lots of people use Aileen's Tack It Over and Over but they didn't have that in the store when I was shopping so I bought the spray one. An application lasts a good long time - just put the stamp on a clear sheet or in a CD case when you're done using it so that it doesn't pick up too much glitter/embossing powder, paper fibres etc off your workspace.

If I'm being lazy and snip a single stamp out of a set to use before I do the whole lot, I generally grab my chunky chisel-tip Zig two way glue pen and use that as it's handier. Again, one application lasts a long time.

Quote:
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I don't know what my style is either! So far it's what I like, and there doesn't seem to be any particular rhyme or reason to it. So I guess I'm... eclectic!
A woman after my own heart! Long live eclectic stamping
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Old 08-25-2012, 09:50 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachelrose View Post
Joanne and Sue, what do you use for tackiness?

Thanks for those site links, both great.

I don't know what my style is either! So far it's what I like, and there doesn't seem to be any particular rhyme or reason to it. So I guess I'm... eclectic!

I use THIS adhesive (also see attached thumbnail). It was recommended to me by a demonstrator for unmounted rubber stamps at a stamping/scrapping expo I went to a few years ago. It has a wide chisel tip, so I just scribble on the back of the stamps, let them dry, and I'm ready to go!

I still have some variety of stamp styles, as well, so I suppose I'm kind of eclectic, but the only wood-mounted rubber I have is Stampotique, like I mentioned earlier.
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