Coaster/Trivet Tutorial

Wow…I can’t believe it’s been more than a year since I’ve posted anything. I’m having so much fun creating and trying new techniques. My latest is taking some much forgotten stamps and using them on the coasters and trivets I make…let’s just say those forgotten stamps has lead me to purchasing “a few” new stamps to work with the ones I already own 🙂

I joined the Stampscapes user group on Facebook and I had a few requests asking me how I make my coasters/trivets. Hopefully this short tutorial will help to answer a few questions for the group.

If you’re like me, you often think about your next project when trying to fall asleep. I do a lot of different acrylic techniques such as poured paint, blooms, swipes, you name it – I’ve tried it! Waking up one morning, I wondered if I could stamp on an acrylic base. I had a few ideas and this is what I came up with…

I am so lucky to have a hubby who supports my crafting attempts. He keeps me supplied with the base product needed to make my items. For whatever reason, I really like the hexagon shape to work on. Let’s just say, it isn’t the easiest of shapes to cut out. Luckily a super talented gal DIY Montreal shared a YouTube video on how to make a jig to cut out the hexagons. We purchased the plans for $5 – well worth the $$$.

So with all this said, lets get to how I make my coasters/trivets.

As I said, my hubby cuts out the coasters/trivets. He uses 1/4″ high density fiberboard (hdf).

After the coasters/trivets are cut, we use a router with an 1/8 inch rounder bit as I really don’t like the sharp edge on the top side.

As you can see the base of these coasters is pretty dark. I would recommend painting them with a white base coat. I use a roller brush and the process goes quite quickly. Let them dry. Once dry, the fun begins… deciding what colors to paint them. You can go with a solid color, monochromatic or blend a couple of colors. I will often start with a dark base color and add white to lighten towards the opposite end. I would suggest not going too dark unless you plan to stamp with a light/white ink. I typically use Amsterdam or Liquitex medium body paints. It is important to get a fairly smooth background so work those brush stokes out to avoid stamping problems down the line.

On this coaster, I added the deepest color in the middle and added an orange on one end and a yellow on the other side and blended the colors out. I like the streaks of color as I feel it breaks up the background but do what makes you happy.

I LOVE my MISTI…I don’t know how I would stamp without it! If I don’t get a complete image transfer all I have to do is reink it and stamp again – no fuss, no worry. You can use either you foam mounted or unmounted stamps in the MISTI. I use a Clear Mounting Stamp from Purple Onion Designs with all of my unmounted stamps.

Originally I had thought it would work to put a clear coat of resin on the coaster and then stamp as that would give me a much smoother surface. The problem I ran into was if I pressed to hard, I would get blurred images so now I do a direct to paint stamping. Since I’m stamping on an acrylic surface, I could probably get by with a dye base ink but since I started out thinking I was going to stamp on resin I am using Stazon jet black for my stamping. It’s a pain to clean the stamps afterwards but I do like the deep black color I’m able to get by using it.

The bar magnets hold the coaster in place so I can stamp with a larger Stampscapes stamp – it’s inked up and ready to stamp.
I felt like the image was a bit bare so I added another Stampscapes stamp to fill in some of the dead space. My biggest problem is knowing when to quit. I almost added some geese overhead but decided against it.
One of the advantages of using the MISTI is that I can get reproducible results.

Since I’m using Stazon ink, it dries almost instantly but I still like to give it an hour or so before adding a coat of resin to it. When it is time to resin, I like to do multiple sets at one time, if I’m going to make the mess I want it to be worth while. My counter holds 10 sets of coasters comfortably so that’s how many I normally resin at a time.

One could by with one coat of resin as the coasters are protected but there is something about adding that second coat that give the coasters/trivets a much nicer finish.

For my coasters, I use Pour Me a River Countertop and Top Coat resin. For my trivets, I use Counter Culture DIY Artist Resin, since hot items are being placed on the trivets I appreciate the higher heat-resistance.

Completed coaster set! Resin for me is like using glossy paper for stampers – it just brings the colors to life…it also photographs terribly 🙂

For those of you that do alcohol inks, I bet you could use purchased white tiles to use as a background for your stamps. As hard as I try, I have never mastered using alcohol inks…maybe one day.

Experiment, play around…I’d love to hear if this has helped out in any way and if I inspired you to give this a try. I’d love to see your creations!