Stamp out holiday boredom

Are you bored with holidays and think they are too commercial? Make your own cards! It’s incredibly easy,  fun and satisfying. One great tool for quickly making lots of holiday cards is a rubber stamp.

Do you need a rubber stamp? Go to Casey’s in the East Village, NYC. Do you think you don’t need a rubber stamp? Think again, you probably do but just don’t know it. Look at their online catalog and see what you need that you didn’t know you need.

At Casey’s you can get your artwork made into a stamp too. You can make your own cards for holidays, birthdays or thank you cards, with your very own artwork. Did I mention, your own artwork??? Come on, take back the holidays and make your own cards out of rubber stamps. It doesn’t take much time at all and it’s really fun to say “I made it” when someone says “where did you buy this card?”  You’ll feel much better about the world and yourself! Yes, it’s true, I am shamelessly using peer pressure to get you to capitulate. Someone has to, all those ads out there are doing it on behalf of big business and we need some voices for the other side.

You can also make the actual card itself out of big sheets of handmade paper which you can buy at places like New York Central Art Supply or Dick Blick or you can buy pre-made cards. There’s a sale right now at Utrecht on really nice Strathmore watercolor cards and envelopes, 10 cards/envelopes for $5.29. That’s waaaay less than you would pay for a nice card, and cards are much nicer when you’ve made them yourself. It doesn’t take much time to do this and the good feelings you’ll get from taking back the holidays will be an awesome payoff.

Here is a pineapple card I JUST MADE using a rubber stamp just to show you how easy it is to make a stamp:

Handmade pineapple card

All I had to do is grab a card (I keep a huge stack of them around at all times for just this purpose), grab my pineapple stamp and burgundy red inkpad and stamp the card. This kind of card sells for around $4-$5 in a store and it cost me probably about 50 cents at the most, probably less. I buy my blank cards in bulk so I save a huge amount doing this. See, you can save money AND feel good about yourself because you made it yourself AND save time (it certainly took less time than going card shopping) AND the act of making things is a type of meditation so it will lengthen your life. Hah!

There are a bazillion ways to use rubber stamps. You can very quickly and easily make your own wrapping paper out of plain brown paper. Speaking of which, I need to start doing that right after I finish this post. There are so many great reasons to make things yourself and take back the holidays. Come on, do it!!! (peer pressure, peer pressure, peer pressure….)

Take back the holidays!

For my holiday presents, I always make one present and buy one present for my family. I do it because I think it’s more special and also so that I feel a sense of ownership over the holidays, so that it doesn’t feel as commercial to me. Many people talk about all the holidays as being Hallmark holidays. It doesn’t have to be a Hallmark holiday. It can be your holiday. I encourage everyone to take back the holidays for themselves and make something for someone, even if it’s one thing. Here is an idea for you, make a book! Here is a great online guide to creating or reinforcing books. You can buy these supplies at many art or craft stores like Michael’s, Dick Blick or if you are in NYC at any point, get them from New York Central Art Supply.

Bookbinding picture

Portrait of “Quinn”

Here is a portrait I finished last month of a beautiful little boy named Quinn. He was a joy to paint! This painting is watercolor on paper. I painted portraits of Quinn’s brother and sister Scarlett and Caleb as well and they are all three hanging together now.