DIY Southwestern Stamped Cards

Yesterday morning I had a list of people to send thank you cards to but no cards in the house so I decided to make some. Originally I planned on doing a design featuring arrows, but when I went to look for some design inspiration I ran across this Camp shirt and decided instead to do a pattern inspired by it.

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To begin I used a ruler to draw a grid on my carving block. Then I sketched out the rough design of my stamp. But if you want to skip this step, you can download a copy of the design I used right here: southwestern motif.

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Because I wanted the lines of the stamp to be thicker than my pen (and since I’d made a few mistakes!) I traced over the final design using a Sharpie so it was clear exactly where to carve.

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Then it was time to carve. I started by outlining all around the design. If you’ve never carved a stamp before, here are some pro tips for printmaking.

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And here’s the finished, fully carved stamp.

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One of my favorite things to do when block printing is to use two colors of ink and roll them out side-by-side to create an ombre’ effect. I used red and yellow ink.

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And here’s the first print- not too bad!

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I printed a series of 8 cards and now I’m looking for more things to stamp with this cool design. Here’s the finished thank you note, ready to mail.

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Alicia DiRago is the founder and CEO of Whimseybox. She has led DIY events across the country and been featured in the Wall Street Journal. Alicia is a lifelong crafter and former chemical engineer obsessed with making everything from bracelets to (homebrewed) beer! You can find her personal DIY, fashion and design blog at


  • Reply October 16, 2012

    Loving: Camp Brand

    […] check out the DIY Southwestern Motif Stamped Card project we did at Whimseybox. The design was inspired by the motif inside buffalo on the shirts in the top […]

  • Reply October 19, 2012

    Carolina Buzio

    It looks gorgeous! one question, do you use acrylics or oils for the inks?
    And do you have a press to stamp?
    Thanks for the great post, it was my first time in the blog and I am loving it :)

    • Reply October 22, 2012


      Thanks Carolina!

      We used Blick Water-Soluble Block printing ink for these stamps. No press, just our hands! :) Glad you enjoyed it – hope you come back soon & join our community to post your own projects!

      Cheers –

  • Reply October 22, 2012


    I am also curious about what kind of ink you use, and the technique you use to apply the ink to the stamp!

  • Reply October 22, 2012


    Hi Lowrah!

    We used Blick Water-Soluble Block Printing Ink

    There are a couple of ways to apply the ink to the stamp – it just kind of depends on how well you carved your image. For this one, Alicia rolled the ink on the flat surface (you can use a plastic place mat or some other scrap surface) to blend it and smooth it out. She then used the brayer ( to roll the ink on to the stamp. Alternatively, you could just press the stamp on to the ink, but if you have any slightly raised areas on the stamp, they may pick up excess ink. Just do whichever method works best for you and your stamp! :) Good luck, and be sure to share what you make!

    • Reply October 22, 2012


      I love carving stamps, the hardest part is always getting the ink to do what I want! I have a nice brayer, but I’ve never tried this ombre method- I am going to give it a go! Thanks for your reply.

  • […] Here’s the finished garland decorating a gift-wrap project I make using the same stamp I used on this DIY stamped card project. […]

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