GIVE THE GIFT OF SUSTAINABILITY.
Christmas is renowned for being sustainably challenged, and I’ll admit that it’s easy to get caught up in the madness of sticky tape, wrapping paper and disposable gifts. But with a little planning, it’s easy to create your own personalised and pretty gift wrapping. It’s also a great way to occupy the kids on those hot summer afternoons.I used brown paper bags from Reverse Garbage, which were bought for a small cost. These come with the added bonus of being able to up-cycle something that would otherwise have ended up in landfill.
2. Sketch out the design of your stamp with the tip of a sharp knife, cutting in shallowly or use cookie cutters. You can make adjustments as long as they’re shallow but be aware of these when you’re cutting around the edge to make sure that you don’t follow the wrong outline.
3. Once happy with the design, slowly work your way around the perimeter by extending cuts to the outer edge of the potato. Then slice off a shallow portion of the potato so that the design sits above the rest of the surface.
4. Once the whole design is sitting proud from the potato surface do a test print.
5. You can make a few changes now if you’d like to refine the design, or simply slice the whole stamp off to start anew in a clean layer underneath if it really didn’t work out.
6. Use a flat paint brush to cover the stamp in paint. This should be a thin layer so that paint doesn’t squeeze out of the sides once stamped, but it should be enough to transfer evenly once printed.
7. Push down hard when printing and try not to move the stamp.
8. If some areas don’t contact perfectly, simply paint them in afterwards. This is where metallic paint is particularly forgiving.
9. Experiment with different combinations of stamps, placement, colours and patterns.
10. If paint builds up around the edges of the stamp causing blobs, simply wash it off under cold water and start again.
Shapes with angular edges are easier than curved.
Remember that everything will be backwards when you print if you’re using letters or numbers.
Stamps are best used straight away. If left too long, they will dry out and shrink unevenly.