My Kits and Pieces! and Quilt Block
Packing for a Crop

Playing With Hambly!!

Two weeks ago, Craft Critique hosted Hambly week! I was thrilled to receive a very generous packet of goodies from Hambly. This is my review of their product:

I have been a fan and follower of Hambly Screen Prints from the very first moment I saw it online. You see, I am a scrapaholic with nowhere to shop. Stranded in the midst of New York City, the internet is my only shopping option. Cruising one of my favorite message board galleries, I began to note all of the cool and funky freestyle layouts using Hambly overlays. I immediately sent my fingers shopping. But, the prices. Whoa. $2.50 for an overlay? I couldn’t do it. So, I lived vicariously through others, enjoying their artwork and reading the Hambly blog. But, then it happened! I received some Hambly as part of a design team kit and then as a gift. The second I saw that Hambly in person, felt the quality of it, I became a customer! And you should be one too.

Julie’s top five reasons to become a fan of Hambly.

1. The quality. The transparencies are thick and sturdy. The colors are bright. The paper is thin but strong, without the brittle qualities of so many others. The rub-ons are easy to use.

2. The originality. They say that there are no new ideas out there. I beg to differ. Hambly has a look all of its own.

3. The designs. The papers, rub-ons, and overlays are both playful and elegant. Hambly can be used with treasured wedding photos or photo booth snapshots.

4. The transparencies. Hands down. No contest. These are the coolest transparencies around. I love the quality and the designs! Check out the new line, which debuted at CHA.

5. The company. I like to support companies that are good to their employees and to the community. Hambly’s design team only has great things to say about them and I know that the company is very generous in donating prizes to challenge blogs and other similar endeavors.

Still not convinced? Afraid of transparencies? Afraid of ruining them? Well, I did some experimenting and created this little guide:

Alcohol Ink With Flower Mask

• I used a Queen & Co. flower as a mask (put it down with temporary adhesive).
• I applied three colors of Ranger Alcohol Inks.
• The alcohol ink takes up the printing on the transparency.

Heat Embossing With Pigment Inks

• I stamped a large flower image using pigment inks.
• I used clear embossing powder.
• The embossing powder wants to stick to the transparency (my guess is that’s because of the static cling).
• I wiped off the excess embossing powder as best as I could with a dry paintbrush.
• The transparency held up pretty well to heat embossing with just a bit of shrinking and crinkling. I believe that if you kept the heat gun farther away or did it more briefly, you’d be fine.
• As you can see, the image didn’t come out very sharply.

Writing on the Transparency

• I experimented with different pens.
• Ultra Fine Point Sharpie: Good. Easy. No smearing.
• White Uni-Ball Signo: Good. Easy. No smearing.
• Sakura Pigma Micron: Wipes right off.
• Bic Ball Point: Difficult to write with (skips) at first. No smearing.
• Galaxy Marker: Very transparent. No smearing, but it looks like it bled a bit.
• Felt Tip Pen: Wipes right off.
• Pilot Gold Paint Marker: Good. Easy. No smearing.
• Regular Black Sharpie: Good. Easy. No smearing.

Stamping With Solvent Ink

• I used a foam stamp with Staz-On solvent ink.
• So easy! I thought there would be some slippage because of the slick surface, but I didn’t have any issues.
• Image is crisp and clear.

Stamping With Acrylic Paint

• I used Making Memories paint and foam stamps.
• The top image is the first print and the bottom image is the second print (without reapplying paint).
• Lots of detail shows up. Clearly it’s better to use less paint.
• The image is still somewhat translucent.

Stamping With Gesso

• Gesso is an acrylic paint that is often used as a primer.
• The top image is the first print and the bottom image is the second print (without reapplying paint).
• I’m not sure if it’s the way I applied the paint or the consistency of the gesso, but the second image is almost identical to the first.
• The image is significantly less translucent than with the Making Memories acrylic paint.

Applying Patterned Paper Behind

• I measured the space between the uninterrupted lines on the transparency and cut two pieces of patterned paper to fit those spaces.
• I used a Xyron machine to apply clear adhesive across the entirety of both strips and glued them to the rear of the transparency. (You don’t see the adhesive at all!)
• The lines on the transparency hide the paper seams.

Reverse Painting

• I used acrylic paint.
• Note the orange flowers. This is an easy trick. Paint messily behind the pattern and the paint will only show through the clear part of the transparency!
• I also wanted to highlight the word “happy,” so I painted behind it. Too easy.

Cutting your own Ghost Shapes by Hand

• I used CutterBee Micro Tip scissors to cut out this flower. I used acrylic paint around the edges.
• Very easy to cut!

Cutting your own Ghost Shapes by Machine

• I used my Klic-N-Kut (electronic die cutting machine) to cut out this flower. I used acrylic paint around the edges.
• These transparencies are seriously hard. It took four passes of the cutter to get through the transparency.
• It looks great, though. You could definitely cut an entire alphabet this way!

Machine Sewing

• Very easy! One of my favorite ways to attach things!
• In this sample, I used a zig zag stitch, a straight stitch, and free motioned the green heart.
• Remember: sewing through a transparency or paper will dull your needle. So change it often and use a large one (like a jeans needle).

Here are some projects I created using Hambly:


This is a clear layout. Everything was placed on top of the transparency (rather than behind it). In my album, I’ve placed it into a page protector without another page on the reverse.


The box on the left is a transparency (the blue grid) with a tag I cut out of a transparency (green), stapled on. The red dots and flower are rub-ons. The box on the right is a piece of paper (gold and orange) with a star rub-on (brown). I applied four star rub-ons to paper and then glued them back to back on the ends of a ribbon (not Hambly) to tie up the lid. Both boxes are held shut by magnets.


The background, the torn piece of green paper, and the paper I cut the title from, are all Hambly. It’s important to note that I used a Sakura Pigma Micron pen to outline the title letters and it did bead a bit on the printed part of the paper. I blotted it with a tissue and haven’t had any rubbing off issues or anything like that.


The background paper and the aqua rub-ons are both Hambly. As a New Yorker, I really appreciate the gritty feeling of these papers. In terms of writing over the rub-ons, it was no problem with the white pen (Uniball Signo). There was a bit of beading with the black pen (Sakura Pigma Micron), but it did work.


I bought this little square notebook at Staples. I placed the brown and white Hambly paper on the cover, cut an owl out of another piece of Hambly, and covered the entire thing with clear contact paper. I used the star rub-on to cover the seam of contact paper and notebook.


I wanted to see how Hambly mixed with the rest of my stash. The answer: seamlessly. The only Hambly item on this layout is the white grid transparency. Here’s a tip: I didn’t attach the transparency to the background paper, I simply placed both into the page protector! If I had wanted to attach it, I could have easily hidden the adhesive behind the paper squares.


Craft wire, paint, agate, a rubber necklace and some seed beads added to Hambly papers and transparencies make for a fun and easy necklace and earring set.

I hope I’ve whetted your appetite for Hambly. Now, go and create!