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I have learned so much and appreciate knowing how to make my pieces look really professional. I have just started my hobby in jewelry making and whenever I come across a hurdle, your website shows me how to get over it. Jewelry Making Journalfree jewelry tutorials, plus a friendly community sharing creative ideas for making and selling jewelry.
These tips and techniques show you how to get great results, from the very first time you try metal stamping jewelry. I recommend practicing on pieces of scrap metal while you get familiar with using the stamps.
A jeweler’s steel block or other very smooth, hard surface that can take some banging. That helps you avoid accidentally stamping a letter or number upside down or sideways – which is a terribly easy mistake to make!
If your stamps are black instead of light gray, you can dab a small spot of white paint near the top of each stamp.
After the paint dries, you can write the letter on each stamp’s white-painted spot with a black marker. Part of stamping’s handmade charm is the imperfect alignment and spacing of letters and numbers. If you embrace the lovely, rustic quality of metal jewelry stamping, you’ll get a lot of pleasure from this art form.
Some people like to use masking tape to tape the item they’re stamping to the steel block. It also makes it easier for you to stay in your rhythm of hitting each stamp uniformly with the same amount of force. Or instead of drawing a Sharpie line, place a strip of masking tape, blue painter’s tape, or the sticky end of a post-it note on your piece of metal to mark the baseline for your text. Then slightly rock the stamp toward you and hammer it; then slightly rock the stamp away from you and hammer it again.
On sterling silver and copper, you can darken your stampwork beautifully by oxidizing the piece, then cleaning most of the oxidization off of everything but the letters or numbers.
You can get a similar effect on most metals by using Gilders Paste to darken your stamping.
I recommend looking through your jewelry supplies (and items around the house) for all sorts of metal doo-dads that have stamping potential!
I do practice on a piece of leather, draw the shape of my blank on it and then place the leather on the block and stamp your design that way when you stamp your blank you know how to space the word and will know what your design is going to look like!! Believe me I ruined lots of my silver disks before I started using the leather and now after a lot of practice my works is finally looking much better. In order not to waste my copper, i practice stamp on a small legal pad…The impression it leaves shows me I am getting better at getting it straight…AND it has lines!

I make sure I’m holding the stamp completely straight up and down, and then give it one good whack with the hammer.
I can totally understand worrying about missing the stamp and hammering your fingers instead! I use a square metal jewelry anvil as shown in the photos above, and it works very well for that purpose. You can start by hitting the stamp softly till you feel good about your aim with the hammer, then gradually try hitting harder. Last summer I stamped a washer with my son’s name and blackened the letters with a sharpie marker.
On my Letter Stamps page, the small round and rectangular tags came from Ornamentea – they are mini photo-frames and photo-turns that were quite cheap to buy. I have come across your tutorial by accident-i am now going to leave this site and find a website to buy a set of metal stamps and some copper blanks-Thank you so much for sharing. I’ve done stamping on both copper and brass sheet as well as commercially made discs in both metals. 1) A cheap, generic stamp set I bought years ago – in this set, two of the stamps came with a manufacturing goof.
I am just starting to add some metal stamping into my leather bracelets and am sort of going in blindly.
I have some metal stamps and have been meaning to give it a try, but wasn’t sure where to start. Thanks so much for sharing on craft schooling Sunday, a great post and looks like there’s lots more to learn in the comments! Does anyone have any tips for stamping on narrow pieces of metal (copper), specifically a cross?
I have been playing with stamping on serving spoons as gifts- any advice on getting good results when stamping on a curved surface? I recently talked to someone who said in order to get their letters black they used a wax based substance but would not say what it was said they think its better then a sharpie. Hi Jackie, I’ve used Sharpies to darken sterling silver, copper, and various hardware metals. The Beaded gift box is created using different type of beads, great for Christmas tree decoration, earrings, pendant and mobile phone accessory. I do have one suggestion to add: Be sure to hold the stamp straight up and down, because if it is the least tilted the impression will not be evenly deep. I made a few pendants with random placement of letters and it gives a fun, casual look to the message.
Of course it is not the same hardness for practicing depth…but it has been helpful to me. I found that there were a few hardware store washers that were nearly impossible to make a mark in with my stamps.
That way you can get a good feel for your stamps and how to hammer them without having to practice on expensive jewelry supplies.
You may have to stamp up several sheets of the notepad till you hit your stride with the hammer, but practice is the best way to develop your technique. Then, if we have other little ones who stay with us, I will add their names to the necklace.

I have just gotten my alphabet stamps last week and have tried cutting some metal sheet that i bought, but not very successfully. Like most jewelry activities, stamping is quite addictive – no metal surface in your house will be safe after this! And thank you Rena for providing a place where we can exchange idea and learn from each other. Well, I don’t mind telling you I had more fun than I expected so I had to buy my own set of stamps. And I have discovered if you add color from a torch you have limitless design possibilities. On the number 4 stamp and the letter C stamp of this set, the characters are messed up so you can’t read the stamping from them. These are much higher quality than my other two sets, and they’re also much higher priced. I would use a cloth rag or paper towel to wipe off the excess oil – especially off the shaft of the stamps so you can hold them without slipping – and then have fun stamping! I hope you’ll post some of your stamped creations when you have some you’d like to share here! I’ve been wanting to try this for awhile now and I think I’m ready to tackle it! It sounds like above, you say “on other types of metal” meaning NOT on sterling or copper? Then, when I make a mistake, and one letter is higher or lower than it should be, it’s OK. At the moment I can’t recall what metal those were made of, but it was very hard stuff. The other tools I already have so I will keep my eyes open for any metal in the house to get started!
Since I work primarily with copper and use a lot of sheet metal I had plenty of scraps to practice on. They are also great for making shapes for stamping especially if you like to work with free forms.
Most suppliers have staff who are knowledgeable about their products and willing to answer nearly anything you ask about them.
I’ve been putting them back in the alphabetical order in the wood block they came in and squinting my eyes! I don’t want them to be perfectly uniform, i think that would make is lose some charm, but I do want it to be better than it currently is… thoughts?
I am currently buying new tools for your upcoming class, and I am also purchasing tools for stamping my sterling silver.
Few questions-how often do you need to live your stamps… is there a sign I should watch for?
Also where to buy and the cost they vary so much.Any help you could give me would be great.

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