Gardenpinks' Blog

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Organising a stamp collection!

No not the postage stamp type of collection but rubber and clear stamps!

My friend Leslie embarked on a very time consuming and ambitious course in her craft room – she decided to unmount her stamps and find some way to organise them so that she could use the more often; now where have I heard that one before?? Isn’t this what every crafter who owns a goodly number of stamps says? The very small and very large background stamps Leslie left wood mounted. I promised her I would take photos of my system that I gleaned from other stampers but added my own take on the system so that it would work for me.

As Leslie discovered you do need to have plenty of time to embark on this project but I love this sort of messing about and think I enjoy organising and re-organising my craft ‘stash’ as much as I enjoy the actuality of crafting!

Stamp Index

Stamp Index

This large two ring binder holds my stamp index. I worked out in advance what themes I wanted to put my stamps in and then I stamped each image twice – on two separate pieces of paper. Each sheet of paper was headed with the theme and then above the image was the information of manufacturer and name of the set or individual stamp.

Tabbed sheets in index file

Tabbed sheets in index file

The tabbed sheets just have written on them the numbers of the folders where stamps can be found.

A half size index page

A half size index page

The first section of the index folder is for clear stamps which are in a binder of their own.

full size index page of rubber stamps

full size index page of rubber stamps

This page of the index is for one of the ring binders of rubber stamps; binder number 2 and theme Birds.

rubber stamp binder

rubber stamp binder

rubber stamp page

rubber stamp page

The above page is the one that carries the stamps, in the example showing they are rubber stamps. After all the images are stamped out on the paper, the heading added and the information written then these pages are put through a laminating machine. This has a two fold effect – one it stiffens the paper so that is doesn’t bend and buckle in the binder and, two, the stamps cling to the sheet.

rubber stamps

rubber stamps

The stamps are attached to the reverse of the laminated sheet so that when flicking through the binder each image is clearly seen, you can also see if you look at the image sheet and the stamps that each stamp is attached to the ‘backside’ of the image – does that make sense or is it as clear as mud? Each carrier sheet is then inserted into a plastic pocket just in case any stamps decide to uncling!

bulging clear stamps binder

bulging clear stamps binder

Now this binder is in danger of bursting at the seams and needs to have some of  its contents decanted into another binder but it works in exactly the same way as the rubber stamp binder.

half sized page in clear stamp binder

half sized page in clear stamp binder

As any sets were broken down and each stamp put into a themed area it sometimes happened that there were not enough images to warrant the use of a full page of paper – I’m being frugal here!! However in the rubber stamp section under Leaves/Foliage there are several pages but I don’t have quite so many clear stamps under this theme – YET!

reverse of image sheet

reverse of image sheet

And(?!) this is the reverse of the “half sized page in clear stamp folder”!

Stamps being used

Stamps being used

Need a stamp? No problem once the one that is needed has been located in the Index folder/binder and the correct number binder has been pulled out. The laminated sheets are pulled out of the pockets, stamp used and returned at the end of the crafting session, binders put back onto shelf or in cupboard ready for next time. Having written it all down it sounds very complicated but I don’t do complicated, I have simplified it as much as possible and it works for me. Additional stamps are easily added to each themed area but the most important aspect is to keep the index up to date – actually that isn’t the most important aspect – having fun is the most important and not getting bogged down in systems!!

Thanks for looking and if there any questions or queries please ask and I will do my best to answer as concisely as possible 🙂 x

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5 thoughts on “Organising a stamp collection!

  1. I saw you posted a new entry. Had to take a moment to stop in and see what it is. This is a fantastic system you have going here. Your stamps are right there and easy to access. I’m thinking I may have to do what you have done…..next time I’m home for an extended stay. This is less complicated than what I had set up. The trials of the learning curve.

    Thank you, Lynn, for this fantastic post! You have given me a reference and something to think about for my project.

    Love you – Leslie

    • I thought that you might have a better idea if you saw it in pictures. It is an easy system and works a treat for me and so easy to add new stamps too. Also you can easily flick through any of the binders and quickly see which stamp you want to use.
      Hope it is of use to you.
      Love and hugs
      Lynn xx

  2. Brilliant! I need you and Leslie to come over and help me get my stamps organized…I love both methods…they make total sense and I know I would use more of my stamps if I had them organized like you two have. I need to put it on my 2013 Goals list to get this accomplished! I also need to do a whole purge and reorganization of the studio…*sigh* It isn’t even 2013 yet and my list is VERY long of things I need to accomplish!

    Hope you have a wonderful New Year and I can’t wait to catch a glimpse of the things that you create!

    Hugs!
    Jann

  3. Oh I may have to do this. I don’t have many stamps (mounted) but I seem to be adding more and more unmounted stamps and I really have no way to keep them so I can easily find them…yes yes yours is a great Idea

  4. Wow! Great idea.
    Wishing you a happy, healthy and very crafty 2013 Lynn, big hugs from Poppy and me x♥x

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