Labelling Your Rubber Stamp

You might want to apply a copy of the image on the top of the rubber stamp.  In many cases this is unnecessary, and if you've used some pretty wood for the backing, you probably won't want to cover it up with a copy of the image.  But please recognize that sometimes it's difficult for the stamper to tell which way is up by looking at the rubber.  To prevent him accidentally stamping the image upside-down, it helps to provide some sort of this-side-up indication on the back -- and the best way to do that is with a copy of the image itself.

There are a couple of ways to apply the image.  A method that works well for me:  When you've finished carving, use the stamp to make a print on a blank stick-on label.  Cut the image out and stick it on the top of the hard back of the rubber stamp, oriented the same way as the rubber stamp underneath.  Then apply a piece of clear packing tape or self-adhesive laminating material over it to protect it from rain and grubby fingers.

If you've visited other how-to sites, you'll note that many of them suggest carving the rubber first, stamping the image directly onto the wood backing, coating it with varnish, and then gluing the rubber to the wood.  I find the scheme I've described above better, though, for several reasons:
Using clear lacquer or varnish over a stick-on label might work, but it might soak into the paper label and cause it to look lousy or even bubble up.  Better to go with the tape or laminating sheets.

You might consider a couple of other things, like writing your name and e-mail address on the stamp with a Sharpie pen in case it gets lost and found.  Perhaps you might just apply an address label.  Of course, you might consider writing or applying the address label under the tape or lamination you're applying over the image.

If you have a knob or handle on the top of your stamp, you obviously won't be able to apply a label of the image.  To help stampers orient it correctly, you can just put an arrow on the top indicating "this side up".

Navigate to: