Add unique motifs and designs to decorative accents with handmade stamps.
Stamping goes back thousands of years, from documents certified with iconic monarchs’ seals to witty marks ornamenting scrapbooks. The tips and projects shown here will inspire you to find countless ways to use this timeless technique in your home decor.
Add a custom pattern to a plain rag rug with stamps made of rubber. The color in this double diamond pattern is soft, not saturated, thanks to the rug’s nubby texture.
What You’ll Need for All Projects
- Tape measure and pencil
- 4 x 6–inch stamping rubber
- Sharp knife
- Fabric paint in pink and coral
- Disposable plates
- Small foam rollers
- Paper towels
- Woven cotton rug
- Wood blocks
- Curtain panels
- Pillow cover
- Piece of cardboard
Stamping the rug:
With tape measure and pencil, mark the center point of each edge of stamping rubber. Draw lines from each point to the next around the rubber until you have drawn a diamond shape. Draw a second, smaller diamond shape inside about ½ inch from edges of first diamond.
With a sharp knife, cut away the corners of the rubber outside your first diamond shape. Cut away the second, inner diamond. You will have one large open diamond and one small solid diamond. Don’t mount either on a wood block; you want them to be flexible for this project since you’re stamping onto an uneven surface.
Put a small amount of coral paint onto plate. Load roller; dab excess onto paper towels. Roll paint onto large open diamond. Press stamp on the center bottom of the rug; remove. Reapply paint to stamp; continue to stamp diamond pattern in a line to the top of the rug. Start another row of diamonds to the left, aligned between first two diamonds in the first row. Repeat steps to stamp second row of diamonds.
Continue adding rows of diamonds until design is complete. Let dry.
Put a dab of pink paint onto plate. Load roller; dab excess onto paper towels. Roll paint onto small solid diamond. Press stamp in the center of each open diamond, reapplying paint each time. Let dry.
Set fabric paint according to package directions.
Geometrics make great stamping patterns—diamonds, triangles and chevrons are all variations on the same theme. Rows of triangles add distinction to this plain curtain.
Create your own stamps using carved rubber and a wood block. With a sharp knife, trim two triangles from corner scraps of stamping rubber (you will have them leftover from cutting out the diamond shapes for the rug stamp) so the edges are sharp and even.
Align tip of one triangle with a corner point of a wood block; glue in place. Align second triangle with tip at center bottom of first triangle; glue in place. Let dry.
Place curtain panel on protected surface. Following earlier steps for loading stamps with paint (see rug instructions), apply rows of inverted triangles to curtain.
Make a plain pillow cover pop with these easy stamped designs. Align the chevrons for soothing symmetry; staggering the pattern sparks a different energy.
Using sharp knife, cut chevron shapes from scrap of stamping rubber (you will have leftovers from cutting out the diamond shapes for the rug stamp).
Align tip of chevron with a corner point of a wood block; glue in place. Glue on additional chevrons as desired. Let dry.
Place cardboard piece inside pillow cover. Following earlier steps for loading stamps with paint (see rug instructions), apply rows of chevrons to pillow cover.
Photography by Chris Hennessey
© Caruth Studio