I recently was perusing Etsy — a relaxing yet financially dangerous habit — for vintage stamps. Not vintage-inspired stamps but rubber stamps that have been around for a while. I saw one that made me laugh: a stamp of a desktop computer, CRT monitor and all. The listing said the stamp was vintage but didn’t say how old it was. I bought it with plans to use it on a card for a techie friend’s 30th birthday.
I was surprised the stamp had gone unused all this time, however long it’s been around. Mint condition? Not for long. I had a card to make!
For the tech-savvy, yes those are capacitors and a chip, which my husband expertly removed from an old video card. He found that the Dremel came in handy to dislodge the chip, so keep that in mind if you are going to attempt this yourself. Be sure to don safety goggles and a protective mask so that you don’t take a chip in the eye or breathe in dust.
In addition to the dusty tech, most of this card’s elements are “old school,” too. The patterned papers are at least seven years old and the sentiment’s font, Tandysoft, is based on the typeface of the Tandy Color Computer from the 1980s. Retro!
Here’s how to make it:
Stamp a computer image in VersaMark onto a piece of black cardstock. Cover the stamped image in light-green embossing powder (such as American Crafts Zing! powder in leaf) and tap off the excess.
Set the powder using a heat gun and trim the cardstock to a square (I cut my piece to 2 inches square).
Cut a piece of light-green cardstock (mine’s from the Black Orchid collection by SEI) to 2 1/2-by-2 1/4 inches. Adhere the black cardstock to the light-green piece, leaving a wider left margin. Cut a 2 1/2-by-6 1/4-inch piece of grid-patterned, black-and-white cardstock (I used “Time graph” by Kimberly Sabel for K.I. Memories from 2003) and adhere the light-green cardstock to this piece, 1 1/2 inches from the top edge. Attach three large black staples (I used my Fastenator) horizontally over the top edge of the light-green cardstock, starting on the right side.
Make a card from a 9-by-6 1/4-inch piece of motherboard-inspired, patterned cardstock (I used “Level 10” by Around the Block from 2006). Adhere the grid-patterned cardstock, centered, to the card’s front. Using a computer program, type “FEELING OLD YET?” in black in a retro computer font (I used Tandysoft, 18 pt., which can be downloaded here) and add black rectangle next to the question mark (as an old computer cursor looks). Print the sentiment onto white cardstock and trim it to 3 1/2 inches by half an inch, keeping the sentiment next to the right edge. Cut a 3 1/4-by-1/2-inch piece of black cardstock and adhere the white cardstock over it, with the left edges lining up and about 1/4 of an inch of black cardstock showing on the bottom. Adhere this piece horizontally to the card’s front, 1 1/2 inches from the bottom edge.
Optional: Adhere small computer pieces (I used a chip and capacitors from an ATI graphics card) along the left edges of the light-green and grid-patterned pieces.