In this How-To I will show you how to make your own stamp for imprinting a design on a piece of glass while lampworking.
You will need the following supplies:
1) Polymer clay - I use Sculpey but you can use any brand as long as it is oven bake clay.
2) Stiff card stock - or any heavy weight paper. The paper will be left on the clay when it is baked.
3) Brass shim stock or thin sheet for making your designs from - you can also use any shape brass rods or tubes. It needs to be brass though to stand up to the heat of the hot glass.
4) Heavy scissors to cut the brass sheet.
5) Pliers to shape the brass sheet.
Cut a piece of heavy paper 2 inches by 5 inches. Roll out a good size piece of polymer clay into a log 1 inch in diameter and a little more than 2 inches long. You will be trimming the excess off later.
Wrap the paper around the clay log and snug it up tight and tape with scotch tape. Tape the entire length of the paper as this strengthens the clay. Push and tap the clay into the paper tube to compact it.
Trim the ends of the clay.
Shape your brass pieces for your pattern. There may be just one piece for simple designs or multiple pieces for more complicated shapes. Here I have used 3 pieces to make a simple flower design. The shape of the brass does not have to be perfect from one end to the other since one end will be embedded in the clay and not seen.
Here is my 3 petal flower design pushed into the clay log. I have made an imprint in soft clay to see if it is what I want or if it needs a little adjusting. Now is the time to make it right before we bake it.
Press all of the clay firmly down around the brass pieces to compact and secure them.
Cut half of the paper tube away from the clay and shape the clay into a handle. This step is optional as you can leave the clay log as is without reshaping. You need to leave the paper on when you bake the polymer clay. This keeps the brass from shifting during baking. You can remove the paper after your stamp has cooled. Make sure you follow the manufacturers recommendations for temperature and time for baking the polymer.
Here is another example of stamp shapes. These were all made by pressing the brass tubes into the clay. After they were baked and cooled part of the brass was cut away to create the design. I used a jewelers saw to do this.
Tray of Stamps
Here is a tray with some of the imprint stamps that I have made using the technique outlined above.
Here are some examples of glass stamping that I have done.
Here is a cup full of other styles of stamps that I have created. To be featured in a How-To at a future time...