My Virtual Studio: Stamping Action Tools

This lesson is all about cutting, trimming, gluing, sticking, melting, drying, folding, and masking! I have relatively limted supplies in these areas since I’m mostly all-about-the-coloring, but I thought I’d put together the few things I do have and some reasons I do!

Cutting tools

Cutting tools are of course important in the creating process. I have an absolutely ancient pair of Fiskars scissors, the old ones with the orange handle. I have two little tiny scissors that I use often, for little detail work, and believe it or not I’ve still got the “sheaths” for them both after all these years! I also use the red Micro Serrated scissors, mostly for cutting rubber, or doing stamp surgery occasionally (to cut apart stamps, GAH!)

My fingertip knives get pretty regular usage; I keep two kinds of blades in them so I have options; I use these and my big xacto pictured above for my fine art pretty regularly.

The “pokey tool” (aka Craft Pick) is a pretty essential item for poking out diecuts, and a myriad of things I need a little pointy thing for; it goes with an item that didn’t make it in my sketchbook, which is the Quickstick to pick UP those little things I poked out, like tiny dies.

And finally, my Tonic trimmer is super reliable, though I did replace the orange one with the black one simply because the orange one was no longer made; it worked for me for almost a decade, and lives in retirement in the garage even though it’s still perfectly functional. I may donate that to church but have kept it in case this black one isn’t made as well as the orange one! I do keep the smaller Tonic trimmer around too, but it’s put away since I try to keep stuff limited on the counter to items I use alll the time.

  • Precision 5 Inch Scissors with Sheath —- EH
  • Tonic Non-Stick Micro Serrated Scissors —- EH
  • Craft Knife, Fingertip, Fiskars —- EH
  • Pokey tool and its friend:
    • Tonic Retractable Craft Pick —- EH
    • QuickStik, We R Memory Keepers —- EH
  • Tonic trimmers:
    • 12 Inch Maxi Guillotine Trimmer —- EH
    • 8.5 Inch Guillotine Paper Trimmer —- EH
  • Metal Snippers — EH


Sticking things together – so many many options! I don’t have a ton in my stash, again because I don’t want to fill my space more than I already have.

ATG vs tape runner: My main adhesive is my red ATG gun. I don’t typically show it on videos because I rarely show the actual gluing together of stuff since my projects are all about the coloring. I also use the 1/2″ which most folks hate (lol I’m a rebel!) In the list below I link mine but also the 1/4 that more folks love. Plenty of tape runners also do a perfectly adequate job; I do have the Scrapbook Adhesive one, and like it lots.

Be Creative Tape is something I buy often in all sizes! It holds watercolor paper like nobody’s business, and any of the interactive cards use it so that when recipients tug at it, it won’t come unglued.

The Precious: that big roll of Scotch 3M foam tape! Gosh I use a ton. My coloring panels sometimes feel “weak” on a card if not for the little added dimension….so yeah, I should buy stock in the company! ha.

Glossy Accents is not only an embellishment, it’s an adhesive! With limited space I like things that do double duty. I go through seasons of putting Glossy Accents on everything….masking things, adding gloss to glassy items, etc. Other times it’s just a nice clear adhesive for tiny gems etc. I also use Connect Glue, but not as often.

  • Be Creative Tape
    • 1″ —- EH
    • 1/4″ —- EH
    • 1/2″ —- EH
  • Scrapbook Adhesives E-Z Runner —- EH
  • 5 pk (8×11), Be Creative Sheets —- EH
  • ATG guns and tape
    • ATG Kit with pink gun, 1/4″ tape —- EH
    • Refill Tape, 2 pk, 1/4″ —- EH
  • Scotch Foam Mounting Tape —- EH
  • Glossy Accents, Ranger Accents —- EH
  • Connect Glue, Gina K Designs —- EH

Heating and Embossing

Heating here refers to drying – when watercoloring, I do use my heat gun on occasion to dry paper or portions of it so I can “stop” the movement of pigment; in general I prefer airdrying for painting processes.

Embossing is a lot of fun – stamping an image or sentiment in a sticky clear ink (Versamark), adding powder and shaking off the excess, then heating the remaining powder to puff up the surface. You can use other pigment inks to emboss too, but most of mine is white embossing on things I’ve colored. I have a few colors of powder, but my most-used are clear and white! Yep, I’m simple in this area too. But not with the ink – Versamark ink pads get dirtied quick around here and I re-buy them periodically, not just refill. Versamark also comes in a pen, as well as a full size and mini cube pad.

Brushing on some powder from a powder tool deactivates the surface before stamping – it helps make it so the powder doesn’t stick where you don’t want it – but if some does, I keep an old brush on hand to carefully knock off any little pieces of powder before heating it.

  • VersaMark
    • Full size Ink Pad —- EH
    • Small Cube Ink Pad —- EH
    • Reinker —- EH
    • Watermark Pen —- EH
  • Powder Tool Adhesive Deactivator, EK Success —- EH
  • Embossing powders:
    • Detail White, Hero Arts EP—- EH
    • Clear, Hero Arts EP —- EH
  • Embossing Gun (Wagner), Hero Arts —- EH


Getting a good fold on a card is one of those little touches that can make a card look more professional – and there are a bunch of boards that’ll help with that. I still use my old ScorBuddy that has been in my stash for maybe a dozen or more years! I do have a larger one but generally just keep the small one at hand and the larger is only for big projects.

  • Scor-Buddy Mini Scoring Board 9×7.5 —- EH
  • Scor-Pal Measuring & Scoring Board 12×12 —- EH


Sometimes masking is easy – sometimes it’s complex. For the easy, I just use stickies! Whenever possible I just use them to quickly block off a little area and avoid the whole cutting out of masks.

For actual masking, I use Eclipse Tape – it’s basically a giant stickypad roll! It doesn’t tear the paper and you can rip off or cut chunks of the needed size. There are teeny rolls too but I find they don’t seem to stay as sticky as the large roll.

A tip on masking – go from the frontmost image to the back. Mask out the first, stamp the second, then mask the second and stamp the image in the back. And enjoy the big reveal when you pull off all the masks!

  • Eclipse Tape —- EH

Last but not least – another item used regularly in my studio is my Craft Assistant; it’s lightweight, can be tucked easly into a drawer, it cleans up super-easily …others I’ve tried are glass and huge and breakable, or made of surfaces that crinkle, or they’re weird colors. This one is simple and black, and easy.

  • Craft Assistant – EH

Join our creative community! Our Student Facebook Group is for all classes here …and while there are no finished projects in this class, you’re welcome to join the group and get an idea of what kind of beautiful works can be created from learnings in classes on this website!