Thursday, February 25, 2010

New Clear-Mount Rubber Stamps by Stampin' Up!

Over the past few years, there has been enormous demand from demonstrators and customers alike for a line of repositionable clear-mount rubber stamps. Well, you asked for it, and now you have it!

Starting with stamps in the 2010 Occasions Mini Catalog and the 2010 Sale-A-Bration Brochure, Stampin' Up!® now offers our exclusive stamp art in both traditional wood-mount, and the new clear-mount option.

Our new clear-mount rubber stamps are the result of extensive research with the intent to maintain the very best image quality in the stamping industry, while at the same time offering the ease-of-use and storability inherent in repositionable clear-mount rubber stamps.

Clear-Mount Rubber Stamp Features:
  • Nine different sizes of clear blocks available individually or as a discounted bundle.
  • Blocks have ergonomic grooves on all four sides for easy grip and traditional wood-mount feel.
  • Stamps and blocks are durable and easy to clean with your Stampin' Scrub and Stampin' Mist.
  • Optional image labels on stamp backs let you decide if you want to see the image through the block or not.
  • Tight die-cutting for easy image positioning.
  • Large clear blocks can be used to create collages or spell words with alphabet sets.
  • Stamps store easily in standard, DVD-type cases with artwork on front and spine, making organization easy.

Clear-Mount Frequently Asked Questions:

The clear-mount line of stamps has the same stamp quality as our traditional wood-mount stamps, but there are a few differences with the assembly, use, and care of these new stamps. We have provided some basic questions and answers below to help you get familiar with this new product.

Q: Why have we decided to offer clear-mount rubber stamps?
A: We have long known of the demand for repositionable clear-mount stamps from both demonstrators and customers. The problem has been how to offer these features without sacrificing the quality of our product. It took us a while, but we did it! With these new repositionable rubber stamps and clear blocks, you get the same superior image quality and durability you are accustomed to, along with the ease-of-use and storability inherent in repositionable stamps.

Q: How do clear-mount stamps work?
A: Clear-mount stamps are designed to be repositionable so they can easily cling, and un-cling, from your clear blocks. Both the foam and the label on the clear-mount stamps possess a cling property that makes them adhere to smooth surfaces. The cling label is made from a special formulation of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) that is exceptionally soft and flexible with a very smooth finish. When the cling label is applied to a clean, smooth, glossy surface it adheres firmly without the need for an adhesive. To permanently adhere or “stick” the stamp to a block it requires adhesive, like our wood-mount stamps. If maintained properly, the cling properties should not wear out or decrease. Clear-mount stamps are different than wood-mount stamps in that they do not provide a permanent adhesion to the stamp block. To expect that the clear-mount stamps will stick the same as our wood-mount stamps is unrealistic. However, when used properly, clear-mount stamps provide a firm cling that will hold the stamp in place and give the same stamping quality as our wood-mount stamps. To properly adhere your clear-mount stamp to the clear block, press the clear-mount stamp firmly onto the clear block, applying even pressure to the entire surface of the stamp. After you adhere the stamp to the block, turn your block over (rubber side down) and press down firmly to ensure the cling hold to the entire stamp. You will be able to see if the stamp is sufficiently adhered to the block if you see flat air bubbles.

Q: What are the features of clear-mount stamps?
A: Clear-mount stamps are a new option for high-quality rubber stamps from Stampin’ Up! This new option offers a compact storage solution and is great for those that prefer repositionable stamps with fewer blocks.We will continue to carry all of our stamps in the wood-mount option. While one stamper may prefer wood-mount, another may prefer clear-mount, and still others may prefer a little of both. The best option is whatever fits your needs the best!

Q: Are the clear-mount stamps completely clear, so the whole stamp is see-through?
A: The clear-mount stamps are made of the same high-quality red rubber as our wood-mount stamps so they are not clear. The foam is the same thickness and density as our wood-mount foam but it has a cling property on the back so it can cling to clear blocks. When you use our clear-mount stamps with our clear blocks you can see through the placement of the die-cut stamp through the block. There is also an image label for the back of the stamp (between the block and the foam) that will help you position the stamp on the paper. Stamps that are completely clear, called photopolymer stamps, do not offer the same image quality that you get with rubber stamps, and are prone to stretching and tearing. Our clear-mount stamps give you the ability to have repositionable stamps while retaining the crisp stamp images and durability that you only get with rubber stamps.

Q: Are there plans for acrylic (photopolymer) stamps in the future?
A: No. Photopolymer would have been an easy solution for repositionable clear-mount stamps, but it is prone to stretching, tearing, and discoloration, and cannot offer the quality and crisp, finely detailed images Stampin' Up! stamps are known for. Our commitment to offering the very best products in the crafting market simply would not allow us to offer an inferior product like photopolymer.

Q: How is clear-mount stamping different from wood-mount stamping?
A: Clear-mount and wood-mount stamps are both made with the same quality rubber and foam. You will not see any difference in your stamped images with the clear-mount stamps. The clear-mount blocks have grooves on all four sides; the grooves in the block will feel the same in your hand as a wood-mount stamp. Your stamping experience will be the same with either product. The difference between these products lies mainly in their features and benefits. Clear-mount stamps require less storage space, and you can place multiple images on the same block. Also the image on the back of the stamp can aid you in stamp positioning.

Q: Is the clear-mount rubber different from the wood-mount rubber?
A: The rubber on the clear-mount stamps is identical to the rubber used on the wood-mount stamps.

Q: Is the clear-mount foam different?
A: The density of the clear-mount foam is the same as the wood-mount foam. However, the foam on the clear-mount stamps has adhesive on one side (to adhere it to the rubber) and a cling coating on the other side to adhere it to the block. There is also a slight color difference to help you tell them apart. The wood-mount foam color is Going Gray, and the clear-mount foam color is Sahara Sand.

Q: What products or tools do I need to use my clear-mount stamps?
A: To use clear-mount stamps you will need the clear-mount blocks, which are sold separately. To stamp you can use any ink of your choice. Please note that thicker inks such as VersaMark or Craft ink may tug at your stamp. These inks work well with your clear-mount stamps if you ensure that you have a strong cling between the stamp and clear block prior to stamping. To clean your clear-mount stamps use Stampin’ Mist and Stampin’ Scrub. (See question on cleaning clear-mount stamps for more information.)

Q: What comes with my clear-mount stamp order?
A: Every purchase of a clear-mount stamp set includes a sheet of die-cut stamps with cling foam, a sheet of cling labels, and a storage case with a printed insert. Clear blocks are sold separately and are used for stamping with clear-mount stamps.

Q: Is Stampin' Up! eventually going to stop carrying wood-mount stamps?
A: We have no plans to discontinue our wood-mount stamps. The benefit of offering stamps in both formats is that your customers will be able to choose the medium that works best for them.
Q: Will all stamps be available in a clear-mount option?
A: Most of the new stamps in future catalogs will be available in both wood-mount and clear-mount options. However, the à la carte stamps and Build-A-Bear Workshop stamps will only be available in wood-mount.

Q: Do I need to use the labels on my clear-mount rubber stamps?
A: The labels are designed as a tool, and you can use them or not, as it suits your preference. The stamps are designed to cling to your blocks with or without the label.

Q: How do I apply the labels?
A: Applying the stamp labels is quite simple, and you will find detailed instructions located on the back side of the storage case label. Please read the printed stamp-mounting instructions before you proceed. The most important thing to remember is to leave the label on the sheet until you apply it to the stamp. If you remove the label first and then to try to apply it to the stamp, you will be unsuccessful. When peeling off the liner on the stamp label, it may help to only remove one half of the top liner. Press your stamp (foam side down) onto the label. At this point only half of the label will be adhered to the stamp. Peel off the other half of the label, and press down to adhere.

Q: Are the labels removable?
A: The labels are not removable. It could damage the foam if you try to remove the label once it has been applied.

Q: Does the cling ever wear away?
A: The cling is a static cling and will not wear out. However, you do need to keep both your blocks and stamps clean in order for the cling to function properly.

Q: Why isn't my clear-mount rubber stamp sticking to the acrylic block?
A: Our clear-mount stamps are designed to cling to our clear blocks but not so firmly that it would be difficult to remove them from the clear blocks. These stamps are repositionable, so they need to be able to be removed easily. However, your stamp should cling strongly enough to the acrylic block to allow you to stamp properly. If you are experiencing difficulty with the cling properties of your clear-mount stamp, try these solutions.

  • Check to make sure you mounted your clear-mount stamps as the directions instructed. If your stamps are mounted incorrectly then it could decrease the performance of the cling material.
  • Make sure that both the clear block and the cling surface of the clear-mount stamp are clean and free from dirt, ink, liquid, oil, or other residue. The cling properties of these stamps require clean surface area for the cling label to grip the clear block. We suggest that your hands also be clean when using clear-mount stamps and it is best to avoid using lotions or any other oily substance on your hands prior to using clear-mount stamps.
  • Press the clear-mount stamp firmly onto the clear block, applying even pressure to the entire surface of the stamp. After you adhere the stamp to the block, turn your block over (rubber side down) and press down firmly to ensure the cling hold to the entire stamp. You will be able to see if the stamp is sufficiently adhered to the block if you see flat air bubbles.
  • Keep your clear-mount stamps and clear blocks at room temperature prior to use. Extreme temperatures (hot or cold) may affect the cling properties in this product. Condensation caused by extreme temperatures may also affect cling properties of the stamps.

Q: How do I clean clear-mount rubber stamps?
A: You simply use your Stampin' Scrub and a few sprays of Stampin' Mist. Take caution to use a small amount of Stampin’ Mist (one or two sprays) as an excess of liquid could make the stamp come off the block and could cause cosmetic damage. The physical motions to clean your clear-mount stamps are slightly different than cleaning wood-mount stamps. After you spray Stampin’ Mist on the wet side of your Stampin’ Scrub, gently twist your stamp a few times to remove the ink. Next, gently twist your stamp on the dry side of your Scrub. If you attempt to clean your stamps with the same rough side-to-side/up-down movements that you may use with your wood-mount stamps, the cling of the stamp may detach from the clear block.

Q: How do I clean the acrylic blocks?
A: Acrylic blocks need to stay clean in order to work well. Stampin' Mist and Stampin' Scrub will clean StazOn, Classic Ink, Craft Ink, VersaMark, and metallic ink stains from your blocks. Avoid using StazOn cleaner, as it leaves a slightly oily residue that inhibits the functionality of the cling.

Q: How do you store clear-mount rubber stamps?
A: Clear-mount rubber stamps come in a DVD-sized storage case, and can be housed in any storage system designed to hold DVDs. The artwork on the storage label is shown at 100% on the cover, and thumbnail size on the spine. The back of the case is clear, allowing you to see the actual stamps from the back of the case.

Q: Will larger stamp sets (alphabets) come in larger cases?
A: Stamp sets that are too large for one storage case will be packaged in multiple storage cases and will be labeled 1 of 2, 2 of 2, etc.

Q: Can I get extra storage containers or labels?
A: You can purchase a four-pack of clear-mount storage cases (item # 119115). Extra labels are not available for purchase.

Q: How many sizes of blocks are available?
A: The blocks come in nine different sizes, and have grooves on all four sides. Each block is labeled with Stampin' Up! on one edge and the block letter on the opposite edge. You can buy the blocks individually, or can purchase the entire set as a discount bundle for 10 percent off the price of the combined blocks.

Q: How do I know which block sizes will work for each stamp?
A: The size of block that you use with your stamp is largely based on preference. However, we suggest that you choose a block that will have the closest fit to your die-cut stamp, similar to the fit on your wood-mount stamps. To assist in choosing block sizes, you can download the block size template at (insert link here) which shows each block size at 100%.

Q: Can I convert my current unmounted stamps to clear-mount stamps?
A: We do not recommend converting your wood-mount stamps to clear-mount stamps. The foam on the wood-mount stamp was not designed to be cling foam, and it is possible that you could damage your stamp if you try to alter it.

Q: Can I use my clear-mount stamps on wood blocks?
A: No. The static cling is designed to work on the clear-mount blocks, and will not work on the wood blocks.

Q: I prefer traditional wood-mount sets, so why should I invest in clear-mount?
A: We know most demonstrators and customers will prefer one system over the other.

Q: Will I still need to use my Stamp-a-ma-jig?
A: While the labels on the clear-mount stamps are closely aligned with the rubber, it is not exact. We recommend using the Stamp-a-ma-jig if your project requires exact alignment.

Interested in purchasing? Visit my WEBSITE and order 24/7!

Katie Burke
Inspire. Create. Share.

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