Woodmounted Rubber Stamps 

Most common is the wood mounted rubber stamps. 

Wood mounted stamps are the traditional hand stamp that offers durability and protection of the carved out rubber image. 

These stamps often offers very clear and detailed image. And because woodmounted stamps are properly labelled with a colored version of the image on the top of the wood, that makes it appealing to collect, to locate and give a guide on coloring your stamped image. 

Some are sold unmounted and can be easily purchased from the internet. As it is unmounted, it is lighter for shipment but you will need to get it mounted to either acrylic blocks or wood to use the stamps, if they do not have a self-adhesive back. To mount it to acrylic blocks or wood permanently may eventually be more costly. 

Pros 

  • Comes with nice colored print of the image, a good guide to follow when you need to color your stamped image. 
  • Durable as it’s wood mounted. Low chance of rubber changing it’s form or shape. 
  • Need and can be nicely laid flat in drawers for storage. 

Cons 

  • Takes up significant space when your collection grows. Needs good storage for the woodmounted stamps to protect the rubber. 
  • Harder to re-stamp the image if the first time comes out unclear as the wood blocks the visibility of the stamped image. 
  • Harder for alignment if combining a few stamps together to form the image. 
  • Not advisable to stack too many woodmounted stamps over each other due to the weight of the wood, which may add pressure to the rubber and distort the image in the long term. 

Ready To Cling Rubber Stamps 

Similar to the rubber stamps, Ready-To-Cling stamps are unmounted at the back. It has a reusable self-adhesive pad which allows you to conveniently fasten to acrylic block as and when you need to do stamping. 

Ready-To-Cling Rubber Stamps 

Pros 

  • No wood, small in size and can be easily stored in empty CD cases. 
  • As it is light, you may source the stamps internationally and the shipment is relatively cheaper to woodmounted stamps due to lighter weight. 
  • Flexibility in mixing different pieces of stamps together to create unique image and designs. 

Cons 

  • Self-adhesive tend to lose it’s stickiness after prolonged use. 
  • Harder to re-stamp the image if the first time coes out unclear as the rubber blocks the visibility of the stamped image. 

Clear Stamps 

Similar to Ready-To-Cling stamps, you will need to mount it to an acrylic block when you need to use the stamps. Unlike the Ready-To-Cling stamps and as the name suggest, they are all “see through” stamps. 

MSE Postcard Sentiments 

Pros 

  • Small in size and can easily be stored in empty CD cases. 
  • As it is light, shipment from online shops is relatively cheaper to woodmounted stamps. 
  • Flexibility in mixing different pieces of stamps together to create unique image and designs. 
  • As it is “see-through”, you can easily align and re-stamp the image should the first attempt is unclear. 
  • Stamps are flexible, you can arch them slightly to give a variation in the image. 
  • Easily wash with mild soap and water if the stamps get too dirty to restore it’s self-adhesive function. 

Cons 

  • Some clear stamps (depending on brand and quality) tend to become too soft, causing the stamped image to smudge a little. So, it is important to select on good quality brands of clear stamps. 
  • Clear rubber stamps tend to turn yellowish after some time, it doesn’t affect the stamping ability, but just looks a little more dirty. 

My Personal Preference 

Definitely the clear stamps as it offers flexibility and ease of storage and use. Personal favourite is Hero Arts and you can get some good deals here. So far, Hero Arts clear stamps have great quality and is very durable. Design is timeless, so you can be assured that you can use this in years to come for your project. 

For background stamping, woodmounted stamps are preferred as it is more sturdy and firm. It gives a more balanced stamping and it would be great to get the large wooden background stamps. 

I used to purchase Redy To Cling Stamps but have stopped as I find that clear convenient self ink stamp work much better. 

Other good quality craft rubber stamps include brands like Penny Black, Stampin Up and MSE (My Sentiments Exactly). Most of these brands offer both woodmounted and clear rubber stamps.