The one thing I was really looking forward to about Tonic Studio launch event on Hochanda was the premier of the Tim Holtz Stamping Platform. A while ago, I realised that I was beginning to find it a challenge to stamp larger complex images, I knew my knees had a touch of arthritis so it wasn’t much of a shock that the same was happening in my wrists. But it has limited my stamping adventures, especially as I am a fan of clear stamps which take more effort that clear or wood mount stamps.
There have been a number of platforms which have come onto the market over the last couple of years and when Tim Holtz announced his platform in January, I thought I would wait to see this one before I made up my mind. Tim works with British company Tonic Studios (almost based in the West Country, they are Welsh) and I love their products as you can see they are designed by crafters with crafters in mind. The launch deal on Hochanda was just too good a deal to pass up.
The stamping platform has a 8.5 x 8.5 inch work space, it is light and can cope with a BMB cat sitting on it! I bought an option with a sleeve to keep it clean and this means I can keep it on my desk with no problems.
The stamp top surface is double-sided, each with a different sized lip. One side is for clear stamps and the other is for cushion-mounted rubber stamp. if you are just using unmounted rubber stamps (such as Sheena Douglas), you can use the clear stamp side. To change side, make sure the cover is held at right angles to base, and it just slips out of the hinges.
You can also see that the sides are marked with a ruler with both inches and centimetres and there is a grid on the cover. This makes repeat stamping so easy as you just keep aligning your pieces of card up in the same place.
This is how I find the platform works best. I lined the cardstock up first and then held it in place with the magnets which come with the platform (be warned, they are very strong and you don’t want to get flesh caught between them!)
Having positioned the stamp on the page, I brought the cover down to capture the stamp and then inked the stamp in position on the cover of the platform. I repeated this a couple of time on different pieces of cardstock. You get a perfect image each time with just one press. Much easier on the wrists.
One on of the images I covered it with a post-it and then stamped to create a perfect positioned mask. (Well it was once I cut it out!) On this first image, I positioned the background stamps, In this case 5 in one go! I then added a couple of more hearts to go up to 7 stamps. I was falling in love with this platform.
Because of how the platform works, you can just press the cover down and it holds all the stamps in place. The ability to use more than one stamp at a time is an unexpected bonus which I was not expecting.
It doesn’t matter if you get a bit of ink on the platform as it wipes straight off and even if you don’t it doesn’t contaminate the paper as the lip round the edge prevents you pressing too hard, a problem that I have in the past with acrylic blocks.
In 1o minutes, I used 8 stamps in two layers five times, 2 in Coffee on Watercolour card and 3 in black on Neenah White cardstock with no pain. And that does not include making the mask! Each of the final set of stamps were perfectly formed and layered.
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