Custom Ink Stamp Techniques for Scrapbooking

Ink…it’s not just for stamping anymore!

Using custom ink stamp techniques is a fun and inexpensive way to add creativity to your scrapbooking layouts and cards. Whether you're an ink expert or have never considered using ink when scrapbooking, these ideas will add that "extra something" to your layouts.

Edging Your Paper

One of the easiest custom ink stamp methods is to ink just the edges of you paper. To ink the edges, simply hold your paper at an upright angle and run it against the edge of your ink pad.

custom ink stamp techniquescustom ink stamp techniques

This layout used inking on the edges to add layouts directly to the large lion picture on the right instead of matting. I also used edge inking on the journaling blocks to make them stand out a bit against the dark background. You can click on the images to enlarge and see the inking better.

For extra dimension, tear the edges of the paper before inking.

Heavier Inking

To add even more color and effect to your paper, hold your paper face up. Remove the lid of your ink pad and turn it upside down. Gently tap it onto the edge of your paper. Continue until you have the desired effect. For a different look, you can also drag the ink pad across the paper. Using the full edge of the ink pad adds extra ink and is great for darker layouts or as a replacement for matting.

Check out this video for a great quick tutorial on inking edges.


There are as many different techniques for ink distressing as there are different distress products.

Tim Holtz's Ranger Inks are the most popular distressing inks on the market today.

These inks are water-based and come in a wide variety of colors. They are easy to use for basic edging or for more complicated distressing techniques.
Making Memories has a distressing kit that has all the tools you'll need for distressing.

It includes a sanding block and scrapers, black & brown ink blocks, edge scraper, small foam applicators, dauber tops, medium foam brush tips and a brush handle.
This sander from We R Memory Keepers is our favorite distressing tool!

The unique heart shape means you can reach small areas, large areas and makes for easy edging.

If you're not interested in getting into some of these newer products, try this simple custom ink stamp technique for distressing: Crumple your paper (yes, go ahead and crumple it up into a ball) then uncrumple and smooth the paper down. Place it on a flat work surface, then skim the inkpad over the top of the paper. The creases you’ve created will get more coverage, resulting in peaks and valleys of color on your paper.

There are some great YouTube videos available to discuss some of the more complicated distressing techniques.

Other Techniques

Don’t forget the reinkers!

They're useful for more than just reinking your dry ink pads. You can also use them to create splatters on the paper or embellishment, or put some ink in a spray bottle and add a bit of water to create a spray/misting effect.

Still unsure about using these ink techniques for your scrapbooking? Learn more about the custom ink stamp supplies and options available.

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