In 1981 I (Joan-Marie Domino) started a commercial instant printing business. My sister Mary Ann Gentile joined me and we added office supplies to our shop.
I was introduced to "art" rubber stamps by one of my customers. My first reaction was - what the heck is THIS all about? Rubber stamps aren't just names and addresses? They come in pictures, cartoons, and cute phrases like "Happy Birthday"? And stamp pads come in colors other than black and red? Markers come in dozens of colors? I thought I was dreaming!
It was an instant addiction and I couldn't get enough. I stamped anything that wasn't moving! I started making cards . . . lots and lots of cards. Then I learned how to HEAT EMBOSS which led to many sleepless nights. How can you SLEEP when you can be EMBOSSING?
My enthusiasm for this new hobby/obsession was something I needed to share with others, so in a New York Minute we added "Art" Rubber Stamps and Accessories to our shelves. Before we knew it we were designing our own original rubber stamps, and we haven't looked back!
As for "Vippies"? Well, I was always doodling little stick figures and asking Mary Ann who they looked like. 9 times out of 10 she guessed correctly, so our Vippies Stick Figure Rubber Stamps were born. I started with plain stick figures then branched off into stick figures with hobbies, sports, occupations, and entire collections of stick figure holidays and celebrations. Of course I then had to design trees, houses, pets, words and sayings, and other accessories so that I could stamp an entire scene.
Around 1993 we started doing Rubber Stamps Shows and Conventions all over the eastern part of the country. Our booth was always extremely busy with stampers asking for our Vippies Stick Figure Stamps, Self-Stick Calendar Pads, and Matchbook Note Pads. We've taken a hiatus from the Conventions but who knows in the future . . . ?
(Please note that our rubber stamp images have always been made in the U.S from 100% pink or red rubber with wooden mounts made from sustainable pine grown in the U.S.)
So relax and browse through our stamps, accessories, and samples. We will be blogging with instructions on how to make many projects, as well as writing about some of our favorite recipes and even blogs about our many pets. We also have a large mermaid collection - both stamps and other objects - and we feature different mermaids every Monday - "Mermaid Monday" - on our Facebook page. Keep coming back because you never know what you will find on our new website. Enjoy!