Friday, 18 June 2021

The importance of good stamps

 Hi there! 

Time for a little rant I'm afraid!

I'm sure you have probably heard about a number of fake stamps appearing out there. Many of these seem to come from China and are made of silicone. There are huge numbers on Ali Express. No matter how cheap they are, please don't buy them. I'm not just saying that just because they steal the images without permission (although that is reason enough I think!).  The nature of the materials they are made from means that ink won't give an even coverage; they are so squashy that the stamp distorts when you stamp it and the stamped image is poor to say the least. Also, they will decay a lot quicker than any rubber or decent photopolymer stamp. I own 20+ year old rubber and photopolymer stamps that stamp as well as the day I bought them. With silicone stamps they ended up in the bin after less than 7 years. I am very lucky to be on the DTs for Bee Crafty and Crafty Individuals, who produce excellent quality stamps that I consider to be the very best. I've also got stamps from Inkylicious, Hobby Art, Woodware, Chocolate Baroque, Lavinia, Card-io, Honey Do, Uniko, Indigo Blu, That's Crafty and Visible Image. These are all UK based companies that have excellent quality stamps and good customer service. They have built up a good reputation. If you want that quality of stamp and service, buy direct from them - They are all crafters too, so they make stamps that they enjoy using themselves.

I have heard a number of crafters say that they tried stamping but struggled to get a decent image so gave up. I wonder how many of them bought cheap, poor quality stamps and that was the cause of their issues? When I have tried using some of these stamps it has taken me much longer and sometimes several attempts to achieve something half decent. Many 'free' stamps on magazines are manufactured in the same way. Some are okay, but none are as good as the real thing. 

We have an amazing Craft Industry in the UK and it would be good to keep it that way, so when you spend your craft allowance, spend it wisely and buy direct from the companies you know you can trust! 

Thanks for reading this 


Jane Royston said...

Well said and totally true! Xx

cuilliesocks said...

Absolutely have to agree with you Sally, in the end you are not saving all that much money. I do think the stamps from Creative Stamping are really good, in fact this months stamp collection are from Crafty Individuals. I can't speak for other magazine freebies though, take care, Kate x

Nicky Shaw said...

Well said, the quality of the companies stamps you mentioned are the best, my view is that you can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear, to use good quality stamps is a joy, I remove myself from any conversations that involve the words "Alie Express" in a positive way.

Sandma's Handmade Cards said...

I absolutely agree with you Sally. We have some amazing stamp companies here in the UK and it would be such a shame to lose them because of shameless people selling cheap, inferior copies. A very well written and thought provoking blog post x

Daffodil Cards said...

Interesting post Sally, I'm a comparatively new stamper, so magazine freebies get me interested in the hobby, I don't have to spend a lot and then find I don't like stamping, as I did many, many years ago, I gave them all away and went completely digital.
I have bought a few quality stamps and find I am getting into it a little more. However I bought a stamp from a quality large stamp company (red rubber stamp) and cannot for the life of me get a decent image. Money down the drain for me. I've tried many times to stamp it.
I agree about buying from UK companies though, perhaps the "Buy British" logo should come back?
Thanks for the post.
Faith x

Di said...

Spot on Sally! Unusual for you to be anything other than cool, calm and collected - but you summed it up very well. I hate to say it but do suspect that Woodware dabbled in having stamps made abroad at one point - I bought two identical stamp sets, one after the first one was rubbish - from two different UK suppliers and both were like chewing gum. It's never happened again so perhaps it was a test run - 'men's shirts' as I recall. Shame as the images were lovely.


Di xx

Pat said...

I do agree with you that there is nothing like good quality rubber or photo polymer stamps Sally and I have used quite a few of those companies you mention. I have some cheap sets that were magazine freebies and the quality is not anything like as good, but I buy them not expecting to get more than a few years out of them and I like Kate think the best ones are by Creative Stamping Magazine but even these don't stamp as well and I often use a stamp platform so I don't press too hard. I personally do not buy from China because I don't agree with them copying designs. I have seen a few dies around Blogland which I did not recognise as a copied design but an awful lot are just straight copies which would stop me from buying them immediately as I know the amount of work that goes into designing and producing the originals. Thank you for talking about this and bringing this into the public's good to make us think about the damage this type of thing does to the crafting industry. x