What is #CarveDecember?
I'm so glad that you asked.
Each December I host a stamp carving extravaganza!
- #CarveDecember is FREE. No cost to participate.
- Most people post their creations to instagram using the hashtag #CarveDecember
- Beginners (never carved a stamp) and experts (literally wrote the book on it) are both welcome and well represented in the #CarveDecember pool!
- The concept behind #CarveDecember is to carve a stamp every single day in December. End the month with 31 brand new stamps!
These are just a few of the stamps I've carved over the past 3 years of #CarveDecember:
- I started this challenge to remind people that (a) stamp carving is quicker and easier than you might think, and (b) daily practice improves your skills enormously!
- If you miss a day, who cares?! Pick it up again the next day and keep carving!
Here's a quick list of things you can do to have a great #CarveDecember experience:
Gather Your Supplies
When working on a daily project, I find it easiest if I have all the supplies I need right at hand so I can sit down and get to work. Even if you don't have a dedicated art space, you can quite easily fit a stamp carving kit into a shoebox or a tote bag. I take my stamp carving supplies all over the world with me -- just remember to pack your blades in your checked luggage. Even if you're traveling during December, you *can* carve a stamp every single day! All you need is your kit and a table.
Here's what's in my carving kit (links to brands I use):
- Speedy Carve
- Glass Mat
- Ballpoint Pen
- Box Cutter
- Carving Tool and Blades
- Permapaque Markers
- Black Ink Pad
- Black Reinker
- Colored Ink Pads
- Avery Tags
- Scratch Paper
- Grid Stamp
Plan for Success
I like to make a plan. But I also like to remember that it's okay to deviate from the plan. The plan should be helpful, and not feel like it's strangling or constricting you.
Some things to plan:
- Pick a time of day to carve. For example, I do best if I get it out of the way first thing in the morning. Other people have told me that they like to do it as an after dinner activity or a lunch break activity.
- Make a list of stamps you'd like to create. For example, I'm longing for some new number stamps. There are also some simple border stamps I'd like to create for my art journal. And I need to create a stamp or two for this year's holiday cards. What's on your list of "stamps I'd like to own?" Write them down so you have some ideas for what to carve. Nothing is worse than sitting down to create and not having any ideas.
- Gather inspiration. Start a Pinterest Board dedicated to #CarveDecember. (You can see mine here.) Or go analog and start collecting images from magazines, taking photos, or even starting with some sketches. There's nothing wrong with copying as long as you site the source of your inspiration.
- Plan ahead for the hard days. December is a busy month. But some days are busier than others. When I know that I have a crazy day coming towards me, I grab my list of quick and easy stamps. Generally speaking, these are stamps that are small -- about an inch -- and simple -- stripes, dots, etc. They still look great, but I can get them done from carve to print in less than 15 minutes. For example:
No Experience Necessary
If you want some help with stamp carving, these are resources I offer:
- Book: Carve Stamp Play
- Online Class: Stamp Carving 101
- Online Class: Stamp Carving: Designing Patterns
- Get a discount when you buy both online classes together.
- ALSO: For the months of November & December, take 31% (because there are 31 stamps in #CarveDecember) off any of my online stamp carving classes using the code 31STAMPS.
You can also visit YouTube for tons of FREE video tutorials on stamp carving!
I really hope you'll join us for #CarveDecember! It's fun and easy and you end the month with an amazing collection of unique hand carved stamps, whether you carved every day or just a few days!
Are you planning to join in this year? Let me know!
Thanks for stopping by!