Posts Tagged ‘rubber stamps’


It’s that time of year again: San Francisco Zine Fest time! Taking place September 6th, 2015 at the SF County Fair Building in Golden Gate Park, this year’s DIY extravaganza is gearing up to be something else.


Just like last year, Miz Happenstance and I will be sharing a table! And also (just like last year) I can pretty much guarantee that I’ll have a riot of rubber stamps, postal mayhem, and brightly colored goodies for you to look through!


I’ve managed to put together full sets of issues 1-4 of Red Letter Day…

04_posted zine

…as well as some new copies of Posted (a zine all about artistamps and why I make them.)


(I’ve got a couple new things I’m hoping to get put together before the event.)


I’ll also have a selection of Red Handed Rubber Stamps on the table for your delight and consideration! Pro tip: it’s NEVER too late to consider your rubber needs for Halloween and the holidays. Interested in a placing a “special order” and picking up at the Fest? Get in touch (redhandedrubber@gmail.com) and let me know what I can bring to SFZF especially for YOU!

Alrighty: it’s back to the studio for me – of course I’m burning the midnight oil for the next two weeks!


PS: details about SFZF 2015 can be found at their website: www.sfzinefest.org. Two items of note: 1) SFZF2015 is a ONE DAY EVENT this year and 2) BART will not be running the weekend of September 5th and 6th. You’ve been warned!


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epic cloudscape, downtown detroit

I’m back from vacationing through the “Land of Endless Clouds”: Michigan! Many thanks to RLD readers who sent bon voyage postcards to my mailbox — YAY! What a wonderful thing to arrive home to – postal pals in my mailbox! You guys are the BEST!


“Still Life: A Letter Rack” (1692) artist: Edward Collyer; seen at: the Detroit Institute of Arts

I had big plans to do a write up about visiting the Heirloom Productions rubber stamp show in Novi, MI on August 1st. Revv’d up and ready to see some awesome, I ventured thru the doors of the convention center and was dazzled by the array of paper, vendors, color, and stamps. (It was the first time I’d ever been to a convention like that…)


searching for Capelli at John King Books…

However: I was thwarted in my plans.

Each time I queried a vendor about snapping a booth/product photo (all the while explaining that I was interested in doing a write up for my blog) I was politely told that the vendor didn’t allow photos. After going through this scenario a couple different times, I decided “meh.” I mean, what use is a blog post about delicious rubber stamps if there are no photos of delicious rubber stamps?!?!


elevator existentialism…

So. That was a bit disappointing.

But: I did discover a gem of a stamper, tucked amongst all the decorative papers and mixed media mayhem! Chuck Knock of Grey Wolf Graphics has a fantastic selection of faux postage rubber stamps, perfect for all your mail art envelopes, postcards, and artistamp work.

GWG collage

a sampling of faux postage imagery from Grey Wolf Graphics

Chuck illustrates all of the rubber stamps produced by Grey Wolf Graphics; the GWG website states that he was involved in “illustrating many of General Motors’ owner’s manuals as well as most of the ones for American Motors.” You would never mistake a Gray Wolf rubber stamp for any other, due to the beautiful line work and illustrative quality of Chuck’s imagery — one of the very reasons why I was immediately smitten with ALL of their rubber stamps!


the Grey Wolf “thanks” stamp in action; awesome “mail call” stationery from JU13!

Needless to say, I left a fair amount of my “allowance” at the Grey Wolf booth. Each rubber stamp is beautifully mounted on a hand-turned wooden block; the deep etch red rubber takes ink wonderfully and leaves a fantastic impression. These rubber stamps are a welcome addition to any rubberhead’s collection! (unmounted stamps are also available.)


rubber stamp haul from Grey Wolf; some mounted, some unmounted…

Hey — look how that happened! Even though I said I wasn’t really going to do a write up of the rubber stamp show, it looks like I still managed to do a write up of the rubber stamp show. I’ll leave you guys with a fun YouTube video from Diane Dimich of DD Stamps: a fast and easy painter’s tape technique which can be used on all of those “final month of summer” postcards.

Stay tuned: next week I’ve got fun announcements on the way, as well as a roster of new classes and going-ons!

Keep it postal!


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biz cards

Over at the Red Handed Rubber Stamp blog, I mentioned that October 2014 has been a month (so far) of pumpkin pie, production, and non-stop creativity. October (for me) always seems to be chock full of things-going-on, but somehow this particular October has been exceptional.

work table

I’ve been whittling away on Mt. Correspondence and am happy to report that mail from Ex Postal Facto seems to be caught up — believe it or not! There were postal gems to be found at the bottom of that mountain and I’ve finally managed to return-reply to every single one (as far as I know!)


The “production” part of late September/early October has consisted of full-speed-ahead work for Red Handed Rubber. Halloween is currently a smashing success and — what can I say? — Christmas is right around the corner. (ho ho ho, indeed!) Right now, every spare thought is crammed full of sugar plum fairies, striped stockings, and dancing candy canes. Keep your eye on the RHR blog, as that’s where I’ll be posting new designs.

order filled

However: we’re still in October and Halloween (my favorite) looms on the horizon. For you, dear RLD readers, I have something that’s all treats (no tricks!); I’d like to invite each and every single one of you to:


That’s right! Join Yellow Owl Workshop, Leavenworth Jackson, and Red Handed Rubber (that’s me!) — among others — this coming Saturday at Flax in San Francisco for a rubber stamp-o-rama! I have it on good authority that there will be demos and make-n-takes, as well as a whole lot of stamp-y goodness — free for everyone. Come get your fingers inky — I’ll have special Halloween themed postcards for you to stamp up!

(details about the event can be found here.)

Hope to see you there —


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can it be? is it true?

can it be? is it true?

Perhaps you know that San Francisco has a Muji store (the eponymous Japanese “lifestyle goods” brand). Located in a neighborhood I rarely frequent, I found myself passing through last week. Thinking out loud, my rationalization went something like this: “They have nice pens for writing, good for airplane travel; I should really pick up another one (or three) since I’m here.”

Little did I realize.

examples of work created by Muji staffers...

examples of work created by Muji staffers…

Muji has a rubber stamp buffet. That’s the best description I can give you. Rows and rows and rows of oversize rubber stamps, there for shoppers to use — this must be what heaven looks like, if you’re someone like me/us. Once you purchase a grey tone file folder, a journal with creamy lined paper, and a set of kraft paper brown postcards (whoops! did I just give myself away?), you are free to stamp to your heart’s content.

they make it sound so easy (and it is!)...

they make it sound so easy (and it is!)…

Granted, some of the rubber stamps had been used more than others , so the ink was faint in spots. But the Muji staff was excited by the fact that I was so excited; after a bit of discussion, we were all stamping postcards to send away to friends and family. What better way to celebrate National Card and Letter Writing Month?

my hero!

my hero!

Muji is located at 540 9th Street, in the SoMa neighborhood. It is a hop/skip/jump from SF Center for the Book; why not plan an outing? Afterwards you can always run by Arch to satisfy your urge for beautiful pens.



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those lydia mendoza stamps are SMOKIN'...

those lydia mendoza stamps are SMOKIN’…

I have returned from the great state up north (Oregon) where I had a most excellent time teaching at the Focus on Book Arts Conference. All of my students were enthusiastic and ready-to-bind, even in overly warm classrooms (it was in the 90s all weekend!) The conference organizers were helpful and well practiced in the ways of running a two day event. I met some of my book arts heroes! What more can a girl ask for? (ed. –> cake.)

you know that feeling when you return home from vacation?...

you know that feeling when you return home from vacation?…

I was happy to get back to SF, since I have a mountain of projects staring me in the face. But before I could do any sort of work, I had to get down to business.

that feeling of "it's so good to be home, but DAMN this place is a wreck..."

that feeling of “it’s so good to be home, but DAMN this place is a wreck…”

“Business” meant cleaning, sorting, and organizing the studio. Stacking, piling, putting things into boxes. (ed. –> that will be a whole post in-and-of-itself, in the future) For the time being: I’m a whirling dervish of organization…

And that means great things for RLD readers!



As you may know (or suspect), I have a studio full of things that are delicious, postally speaking. Gridded paper, address books from the ’40’s (pristine!), rubber stamps from Japan: I’ve got it all and then some. Many items I’ve been holding on to for years; some things have been acquired via trips to Tokyo. Other items just find their way to my house. (ed. –> you know how it goes.)

Now the time has come to send some of these first rate goodies out into the world, let other correspondence kids and mail art aficionados put them to good — no, GREAT— use.

somehow, I managed to get a few things sent out this week...

somehow, I managed to get a few things sent out this week…

On Friday, July 19th I’ll be updating the RLD store with a handful of new product — a little something for everyone! Quantities are limited and some items are “one off’s”; I’ve only got one, and when it’s gone, it’s gone so get ’em while they’re hot! Preview photos and prices are currently posted in the RLD store, so feel free to wander over and take a look.

As a bonus: each order placed through August 1st will receive an additional present and I’ll give you a hint: it’s a postal related zine!

without you, I'm nothing...

without you, I’m nothing…

So there you have it! Sort of like Christmas in July, in a manner of speaking. I can guarantee you’ll find a little treat for yourself and you won’t have to bake a single fruitcake…

In all things postal —


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Vincent Sardon of Tampographe Sardon...

Vincent Sardon of Tampographe Sardon…

I’ve been a long time fan of the work of Vincent Sardon/Tampographe Sardon in Paris. His sharp wit and politically charged rubber stamps are in a category all by themselves. (warning: there’s lots of sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll involved in these rubber stamp designs so if you have delicate sensibilities, don’t say I didn’t warn you…)

sort of like falling into a trance...

sort of like falling into a trance…

If you’re into rubber stamps like I’m into rubber stamps, you’re probably always on the prowl for something different, that perfect one. It can be a pretty exciting day when you find a stamp designer unlike any other; often single rubber stamp can inspire a whole new project or approach. When I first heard of Vincent Sardon’s work, I knew I had to see more.

oh yes...oh yes indeed (via the Tampographe Sardon website)

oh yes…oh yes indeed (via the Tampographe Sardon website)

You can be certain that a Sardon-designed stamp is unlike anything you’ve ever seen: sometimes shocking, darkly humorous, brash and bold.

it's a delicious on the inside as it is on the outside...

it’s a delicious on the inside as it is on the outside…

Last year, a monograph of Sardon’s work was published by L’Association in France (see cover photo above), in conjunction with a showing of his work at the Gallery Nabokov in Paris. Chock full of incredible photos and visual puns, this was definitely one of my favorite book purchases of last year. (FYI: the book is written in french, so…)

via the Tampographe Sardon FB page...

via the Tampographe Sardon FB page…

I always love to see artists “in process”: brainstorming ideas, working in the studio, continuously experimenting. Take a look at the video below; you can get a peek inside Sardon’s studio (a.k.a “The Crypt”) as he goes from drawings on paper to finished rubber stamp — it’s quite a process!


So there you have it — one of my inspiration heroes! For all you RLD readers out there: who inspires you to create/make/send? Which five artists or designers would you sit down to dinner with, and why?


–visit the  Tampographe Sardon store to see the full range of rubber stamps


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this is about the size and space of my studio in SF!

this is about the size and space of my studio in SF…

Hello RLD readers!

I’ve returned from my stationery safari in the far-away wilds of Tokyo, and am happy to report that pen, paper, and ink are alive and well. On this particular trip, I was able to spend time at some of my favorite usual haunts, (Seikaido, Yuzawaya, Tokyu Hands) as well as visit some new hideouts (Yamada Stationery, 36 Sublo).

...although the seats aren't as comfortable.

…although the seats aren’t as comfortable.

Let’s face it: flying economy class isn’t as glamorous as flying first class. However, on this flight, I managed to have a middle seat all to myself, so I could spread out and work on projects for the entirety of the 11 hour flight – that felt pretty first class!

ahh, shinjuku...

ahh, shinjuku…

Once you get through the hustle and bustle of Narita customs and all, it takes awhile to get into Tokyo proper (about an hour and a half.) By the time I made it to Shinjuku, the evening lights of the neighborhood were going strong. Under the main train tracks, Yakitori and ramen stalls were in full swing; everything smelled delicious and wonderful and exactly as I remembered it.

so beautiful! so round!

so beautiful! so round!

But a girl’s gotta stay awake those first few hours in town, no matter how badly she wants to go to sleep! (this is the best way, trust me…) So it was off to a handful of within-walking-distance train stations, to look for “eki stamps” (駅のスタンプ) – large sized rubber stamps which reside at Tokyo Metro stations.

don't forget! bring your own ink pad...

don’t forget! bring your own ink pad…

Like a scavenger hunt for people like us, these rubber stamps are often hidden out of the way near a ticket booth or the exit gates. You can stamp in specially designed Tokyo Metro collector books or (if you’re like me) you bring along sheets of paper which later become postcards which you send to your friends! Here’s a tip: I always have an ink pad with me, because the “public” ink pads are usually pretty dried up.

i couldn't resist the rabbit...

i couldn’t resist the rabbit…

More walking, picking up a snack from the convenience store and heading back to the hotel. I was noticing a lot more sticker slapping this trip: all types and kinds of stickers by global graffiti artists appeared on the sides of vending machines, tunneled walkways, posts and poles.

this looks like a dream-state board game, in which all the rules are made up as one goes along...

this looks like a dream-state board game, in which all the rules are made up as one goes along…

And as always: beautifully arranged items, on display in alcoves and alleys. These are labels from saké bottles…

I made it back to the hotel and immediately fell asleep, dreaming of all the bento lunches and ink pens I was sure to discover during the next few days.



(of course! I passed a cat café the next morning – you too can have a pet for a few hours…)

Upcoming: strolling through Jinbocho (used book town), mail art at Tokyo’s postal museum, and riffling through vintage envelopes at 36 Sublo – stay tuned!


to read more about Japanese rubber stamp/hanko culture, take a look at Densha de Japan‘s write up…

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