Stamp Question

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Posted 8/13/2013 by aerynkelly13 in General Scrappin'
 

aerynkelly13
PeaFixture

PeaNut 176,471
November 2004
Posts: 3,789
Layouts: 34
Loc: Big Bear Lake, SoCal

Posted: 8/13/2013 1:45:54 PM
So, I catalogued my digital stamps -all individual images- and determined which ones I have and haven't used. THAT I am tackling, one day at a time, one image at a time.

Where I need your help is with my physical stamps. The Lawn Fawn sets and the Papertrey Ink sets, that kind of thing. How do I determine when a stamp is *used* or not. Do I go buy every.single.image in a set, or half of them, or what? Cos, you know, some sets you're not in love with every image. Or some sets there's images and sentiments and that gets complicated.

A little help? What do you think? How do determine if you've gotten your use of out of a set enough to say "that was worth it"? Help me break this down into numbers because I am a NUMBERS person and I NEED THIS!


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biochemipea
likes shiny things

PeaNut 114,614
November 2003
Posts: 22,668
Layouts: 499
Loc: Ontario, Canada

Posted: 8/13/2013 2:26:09 PM
I hardly ever buy stamps because of that very problem... I LIKE maybe 1/3-1/2 of the stamps in a set, and I rarely buy them because that seems like way too much of a $$ investment for the few stamps I actually like. And then because I hardly ever buy stamps, I hardly ever use them, which reinforces my idea that I don't use stamps and shouldn't buy them if I'm only going to use half the set. What a vicious circle!

For the few stamp sets I do have, I think if I've used a stamp that I LOVE once or twice on something and love the way it turned out, I think that's good enough for me.







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dictionary
To err is human to pea is divine

PeaNut 100,403
August 2003
Posts: 8,173
Layouts: 270
Loc: San Jose, Calif

Posted: 8/13/2013 2:46:44 PM
Well I am uber picky about stamp sets..I really have to see at least 75% of the set being used otherwise I skip.

I guess for me if I at least use it 2-3 times I feel like I did good. More than that I did awesome. Less than that a waste.

Have you ever thought of breaking apart your kits and keeping only those stamps you use? Then you sell the rest discounted and try to recoop some $


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aerynkelly13
PeaFixture

PeaNut 176,471
November 2004
Posts: 3,789
Layouts: 34
Loc: Big Bear Lake, SoCal

Posted: 8/13/2013 3:03:16 PM
I have to clarify that these are by and large image stamps to colour, not the kind of phrases and stuff for scrapbooking. Usually if I use an image from a stamp set, I try to use a sentiment from that set, but that doesn't always happen.

I *have* thought of breaking them up and putting all the sentiments in one place so I can just read through them (I did that with my Papertrey Ink ones, but nothing else), but as far as selling them I'm not sure. I think it'd be pretty weird to be like "Lawn Fawn Critters set, sans Critters", you know?


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slyn11
AncestralPea

PeaNut 190,252
February 2005
Posts: 4,343
Layouts: 133
Loc: New Jersey

Posted: 8/13/2013 3:03:38 PM
I cut my stamp sets up and give away the stamps I know I won't use.


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itzmesarahb
PeaNut

PeaNut 588,814
June 2013
Posts: 25
Layouts: 0
Loc: Manchester, MI

Posted: 8/13/2013 9:15:43 PM
Okay, so I must admit I'm pretty good when it comes to figuring out whether a stamp set is worth it or not excluding Lawn Fawn. Lol. I'm an avid follower/fangirl (lol!) of Lawn Fawn. In my opinion (which is highly biased!) I think Lawn Fawn deserves extra attention. I have stamps sorted by Lawn Fawn and non-Lawn Fawn. I find that so many Lawn Fawn sets can be used in different ways and the style looks continuous. The drawing style of images lends itself to creating scenes with multiple sets. I don't separate sentiments but to be honest, I know which sentiments are with which sets and if I forget whether I have the set or not I pull up my spreadsheet detailing my list.

With other stamp sets I figure out whether I want to get more use out of it and if not... then I make arrangements to RAK it or trade it with a friend. None of my stampy friends care if a stamp is used or not as long as it's in good condition and still stamping. I just like keeping stamps in the original packaging. I feel it helps resale value. I've gotten less for stamps that weren't kept in such condition.

You could also make a master list of all sentiments and stuff. Do what makes you happy but allow yourself to return to the original system if the new one doesn't suit you.


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birukitty
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 35,782
April 2002
Posts: 5,098
Layouts: 1

Posted: 8/14/2013 8:32:19 AM
Instead of worrying if I'm going to use every single stamp in a set x number of times and is that then worth the cost of the set, I see it completely differently.

Stamps to me are an investment and a great tool that I can use over and over and over again as many times as I want to. Not only that I can change the look of the result by varying the ink color, embossing, coloring in the image or watercoloring, see where this is going?

What other scrap item can you say this about? Paper gets used once, so does each embellishment and it's gone. Dollar for dollar stamps are a bargain! And do you scrutinise embellishments this way? What about paper in a paper pack? That stuff adds up fast too.

As far as buying what I know I will use-I do the best I can. Right now I'm working on my album from a trip to Japan I took a few years back. So I bought stamps with kanji letters knowing I could use them throughout the scrapbook. I love image stamps and use them a lot to make my own embellishments. Fans, tea kettles and tea cups, and bamboo are some of the other stamps I bought.

Your other question was how to keep track of the separate pieces of a stamp set. I store my stamp sets together and don't break them up. This works best for me. Most of my stamp sets come with images and phrases on them. What I did was make an index of every stamp image I have using 4x6 (could use smaller) blank index cards and a card file box.

Yeah, I know-it sounds like an impossibly, huge job if you have a lot of stamps. I did. But it went really fast. I'd do a bit a night while watching TV and was honestly shocked how quickly it got done. On each index card I'd write the name of the set it came from, where it is stored (for me that is binder numbers), and if it was unmounted rubber or a wooden stamp. Oh, also the name of the company who made the stamp. Basically for pieces of info-I'd use the 4 corners for that on the card and the image in the middle.

Then I made categories in my index card box. All the quotes went in the quote file, all of the flowers went under that file, and so on. Now when I'm making a layout and I need say a stamp of a flower I just open up my file card box, flip to that category and I can see all of the flower stamps I own-plus where to find them.

Debbie in MD.

aerynkelly13
PeaFixture

PeaNut 176,471
November 2004
Posts: 3,789
Layouts: 34
Loc: Big Bear Lake, SoCal

Posted: 8/14/2013 2:24:30 PM
Debbie - I think, by and large you are right. You said this:

What other scrap item can you say this about? Paper gets used once, so does each embellishment and it's gone. Dollar for dollar stamps are a bargain! And do you scrutinise embellishments this way? What about paper in a paper pack? That stuff adds up fast too.


And the answer is yes, yes I do. I don't really nickel and dime everything, but I certainly make sure that things are used, used often, or used up. With paper and embellishments I can *see* them dwindling, see them being cut up, and by their absence I know that they've been used to their full potential. Stamps *are* a tool, but they're a useless tool if they're not *used*. If found in just trying to SEE what I had, that I had actually forgotten I bought something because I never used it. This DOES NOT HAPPEN with paper since I buy and use it right away. But stamps are usually accumulated in bunches, or I remember one aspect of the set, but not another, and that's where it gets murky.

As for the catalogue I fully agree with you and have started one, but there is NO WAY I am going to stamp everything out. Let alone that I've no space for all those cards, but I just don't have the patience, TV or no TV. I'm doing it in Evernote instead. All I have to do is pull the picture from the internet, or take a picture myself, and plop it down into a digital catalogue. This would work even for wood stamps because they've the picture on the back. Take a picture of the picture. Or stamp it yourself, but I'm a) lazy and not a fan of inking in general. If I'm going to colour the stamp that's one thing, lol! Anyway, this gets rid of the "what do I do if the stamp has three categories" issue. Simple, I just tag it with all of the things that apply. So Some Odd Girl Winter Kaylee has tags like "winter" "Kaylee" "heart" "snowflake". Then when I say "I wonder what kind of snowflake stamps I have, I can search the catalogue and find out because that set and all the others with that tag will show up.

If anyone else is interested, a fellow Pea KatScrappiness made this and was kind enough to share it with everyone. http://kathleendriggers.com/finished-stamp-inventory-evernote/


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Simply_Lovely
AncestralPea

PeaNut 463,295
April 2010
Posts: 4,172
Layouts: 3
Loc: New York City

Posted: 8/14/2013 3:12:38 PM
For every stamp set decide how many of the images (not sentiments) you want to use. So let's say a set has 5 stamps like that. Mark it with _/5, and each time you use one of the stamps add it to the count 1/5, 2/5, etc. Once you reach 5/5 you can decided if it is done, or if you want to use every image more than once. I can't help you with that




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MoniL
PeaAddict

PeaNut 184,038
January 2005
Posts: 1,545
Layouts: 173
Loc: Dusty Ol' West Texas

Posted: 8/14/2013 4:56:22 PM
As a total numbers person, here's my take on how I decide I've used up a stamp set.

Most embellishment packages run from $4 to $6 per pack. I could usually get 5 or 6 layouts and/or cards out of each package (at least in theory but to be honest most items I feel good getting 4 layouts worth and giving the rest away). So if I divide the average price of $5 by 4 uses, I get $1.25. I then divide the cost of the stamp set I'm considering by the $1.25 to see how many projects I have to use the stamp on to get my money's worth. So if I'm looking at a $7 set then I have to use any of the stamps on 6 projects to feel that I've "used up" the set(7/1.25=5.6); a $15 dollar set would need to be used on 12 projects (15/1.25=12). It doesn't matter to me if all projects used the same image, I was able to use it in place of another embellishment I would have otherwise purchased.
If you want to be more cost effective you can go with the 6 projects and divide the cost of the stamp set by $0.83 ($5/6=.83). The $7 set would need to be used on 9 projects and the $15 set would need to be used on 18 projects.
This is where its easier to "use up" a set when you love more of the images since you have lots of options for getting to the total number of projects needed.
For anyone still with me here, hope my explanation/math made sense! I know there's also the cost of inks and embossing powders to consider if I want to arrive at a true total cost, but I'm afraid that calculation would really have everyone snoring. Sorry for being long-winded but not sorry for being a "numbers person" (since it is what pays the bills and all).


~Monica Laabs~

aerynkelly13
PeaFixture

PeaNut 176,471
November 2004
Posts: 3,789
Layouts: 34
Loc: Big Bear Lake, SoCal

Posted: 8/14/2013 8:06:29 PM
No, numbers are good. I like that. Gives me a place to start. That's the kind of thing I was looking for to be able to figure out how to count something as used or not.


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