Where did it come fromSimply Cards & Papercrafts Issue 159
When did I get itJanuary 2017
When did I try itSeptember 2017
First quick impressionWell, the theme of this set made me smile because it is one of the frustrations in my life. I love the idea of pretty teacups and teapots but I quite simply don’t like tea, I have tried a few varieties now with no success. However, no drinking will be necessary to enjoy this tea experience. One thing that hit me about this set was the teacup is only a die and there is no stamp meaning that potential new crafters who haven’t got a die-cutter yet would be missing out on an important part of the set. Having said that there are small die cutting machines on the market for about £40 and if bought from Create and Craft this can be split interest-free into two monthly payments of £20 which I’ll be honest if this is really stretching your budget life is going to be a challenge if you are a budding craftaholic! Anyway, let’s get on with trying the set, shall we?
Testing the StampsUpdate, having had a few problems with using my Ranger Archival Ink pad with any regularity as seen on this post when I dropped my Ink Pad! I did a bit of research and came across this Ink Pad 101 by the frugal crafter. The post is quite old now but the Ink Pads and Brands are all still relevant. The cheat sheet states that Brilliance is great for using on clear stamps that can struggle to give a good impression. As Brilliance comes in the same affordable and easy to manage dew drop as Memento (which I love) I ordered myself a couple of collections of 4 pads using my Amazon Prime (these basics and these metallic ones) to give them a go. Of course, I still use the Stamping Platform as described.
To test out new stamps I always use my Tim Holtz Stamping Platform. I know there are other platforms available but when I came to the point that I knew I needed one I did a load of research into the different features of them all and decided this was the right one for me. You can read my post about it. Why did I need one? With the Fibromyalgia (not to mention a bonus gift of some Arthritis in my hands) I could no longer rely on my hands to get a clean even print with stamps. I was increasingly finding I was not getting good results, even with the Rocker Blockers which always guaranteed this before. The benefit of a stamping platform is that for whatever reason you do not get a clean impression you can simply re-ink and go again and you are guaranteed to be exactly in the same spot. Even the best eyes can be slightly off and then you risk shadowing.
I also always use Archival Ink to test stamps that come as free gifts with magazines. They are usually made from a different material to the one used by a lot of the major brands which means that if you use a dye based ink like Memento the ink can pool on the stamp and give a really bad impression. You can see exactly what I mean in this test of a fairy stamp. Archival Ink does not pool like this and I get to really test the stamp properly.