Baby Handprint & Footprint Imprint Kits: Are they a good idea?

Baby Handprint & Footprint Imprint Kits: Are they a good idea?

Are DIY baby impression kits a good idea or a waste of money?

Becoming a New Parent

When you have a new baby, every day is an adventure. Of course, you want to capture every moment and treasure it, and so you should.  They don’t stay little for long and every day they are growing…what keepsakes should you be capturing?

Creating Baby Keepsakes & Mementos

As well as taking eleventy billion photos (a day) you might also try your hand at some arty crafty stuff! Who wouldn’t want an adorable card made with a little painted hand or footprint? This can get a little bit messy, but it’s good fun and the results don’t need to be perfect. Homemade means it was made for you, at home. Low budget – High sentimental value.

And then you see a kit in B&M Stores…it looks quite cool…you can make an imprint of those tiny hands and feet (that are growing up way too quickly) and you have a beautiful keepsake to treasure forever!
Or do you?
BM STORES KIT

“I just created an entire human being…how hard can it be to make an imprint of their hands n feet? And it’s only £4.99…Bargain!”

Introducing Isaac…

Impressive son of Genna & Derry…

baby hand and foot imprint kit

Impressive Isaac

They wanted to capture little Isaac’s hands and feet and they bought two of these kits – but things didn’t quite go to plan! Here’s what they told me…

  • What were you hoping for?

A framed imprint of Isaac’s hands and feet.

  • How much did it cost?

Each kit was £4.99 – we bought two.

  • Were the instructions clear?

They were VERY brief, just bullet points and really simple.

  • Was it easy to use?

We followed the instructions. We measured the cold water and mixed up a really runny and watery mixture and poured it into the container provided. Then we had to try and get Isaac in it!

  • Did it work?

NO!!! It was a disaster.

  • What went wrong?

The mixture was really cold and runny…trying to put a young baby into it was impossible! The dish was useless too. It just made a sticky mess!

  • What did baby Isaac make of it all?

He hated the cold and seemed a bit confused! Probably wondered why his parents found it all so funny!

  • Was there enough mixture to have another go?

No! Only enough for one go – that was it. We didn’t want to attempt it again anyway!

  • What did you do next?

We started to look on Google. We knew someone in Edinburgh who did baby casts but they weren’t doing them now so we searched online to see if there was anywhere locally that did this professionally. That’s when we found Impressive Memories.

What is the difference between an imprint and a lifecast?

I think it’s important to understand the difference.

What is an Imprint?

This is a 2D, a fairly flat impression of the baby had or foot pressed into something. The definition varies as does the finish. You should end up with a sort of ’tile’ with the detail of the baby either pressed into a clay, or you can then make a secondary version of this where the detailed part is raised and above the tile. Something like this…

Imprints and outprints can be made in stone plaster or ceramic. Again, this depends on whether you’re making them at home or having them done professionally. With good instructions and materials, these are achievable at home. I am going to produce a ‘How To’ guide soon to let you make these, successfully, at home.

What is a 3D Lifecast?

A 3D life cast is a high definition, exact replica of all of baby’s hands & feet. Fully three-dimensional. Much more difficult to create and in my opinion not something to be done at home. Expect to pay a higher price for this than a 2D imprint.

You've decided to find a professional...

Having attempted a 2D Imprint with no success, Genna and Derry visited my Impressive Memories website. They decided they wanted 3D lifecasts of their son Isaac. They looked online and chose from the luxury range of frames. They knew they wanted a luxury oak, single aperture frame with a cast of Isaac’s hand and foot finished in antique silver.  Instead of wasting £10, they invested £120. It may have been more expensive, but the end result proved to be an investment, not a disaster.

Here are their Impressive Memories of Isaac, at 7 months old…

Having Professional Baby Lifecasts Taken

Isaac was wide awake throughout his casts being taken but he was totally at ease and relaxed throughout, and so were mum and dad. In less than an hour the family had been and gone. No mess. No fuss. Not cold and no disasters.

Today, almost 5 weeks later, Genna and Derry came back to collect their completed order and were delighted with the results. The level of detail and the beautiful relaxed little fingers, not to mention Isaac’s characteristic little squished toes.

I asked Genna if she had any advice to give to a new mum thinking about buying the B&M kit – she said

“Don’t do it – don’t waste the money, invest in a professional”.

I completely agree!

Coming Soon!!

A really easy guide for you to make 2D impressions at home SUCCESSFULLY!

2D impressions are so easy to do and with my help, you can make beautiful memories at home. Disaster free! 

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Thinking about Baby Life Casting?

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Is my baby suitable? How do I book? Is it safe? How does it work? How Much will it Cost?

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What to expect before, during and after a life casting appointment.

What to expect before, during and after a life casting appointment.

What to expect before, during and after a life casting appointment.

So you’ve decided that you’d like baby casts taken. What should you expect before, during and after you capture an Impressive Memory?

 

BEFORE

Maybe I was recommended to you by a friend. Or maybe you saw a post on social media, or searched online. Did you attempt your own casts with a kit, or read my blogs? Now the decision is made – you’re ready to create YOUR Impressive Memories – so what happens next?

 

MAKE A BOOKING

booking shotMy online booking system lets you choose a date and time that suits you best. Whether you would like to cast on the same date as your first child was cast, or to mark a milestone event, or maybe just because it fits into your busy routine – you get to choose. You will be asked for a £15 deposit. Do you have an Impressive Memories gift voucher? There’s a unique code on the reverse, which you are welcome to use when you make your booking – just pop the code into the booking form. If you need to reschedule, it’s no problem – your confirmation email has a link for you to do this, up to 48 hours before your appointment. Your email will also give you travel directions and how to find me on Google Maps. You can also select an option to receive a text message confirmation and reminder too!

 

 

DURING

What should baby wear?

outside studioDress your little one in comfortable clothes that are loose fitting and easily removed. Preferably choose something old so it won’t matter if the casting gloop gets on it – I know it’s tricky to wear old clothes when you are only a few days old, but you know what I mean! It’s probably best that you don’t wear your favourite designer gear either…just in case!

What if they are sleeping?

Casting can be done when baby is awake or asleep. You are very welcome to feed your baby while I do the casts, as it helps to distract, relax and settle them. It’s not necessary and is purely optional – you know your baby best, and I’m happy to let you decide what’s best for them. Some babies cry, but most don’t notice anything is happening! There is never any rush – we will let them settle while we discuss what you’d like created, and throughout the process your little one’s comfort is our top priority. You’re also welcome to enjoy a lovely Tassimo coffee or a cup of tea as we create your memories.

casting baby foot appointmentHow are baby lifecasts made?

Taking the cast involves dipping your baby’s hand or foot into pink gloop. I’ll help you and baby get into a comfy position, and once their hand or foot is submerged it only takes a couple of minutes to set. Don’t worry – wriggling is not a problem! Once the mould turns to a soft, rubbery consistency it will come away from baby leaving them virtually clean and me with an impressive impression of their hands and feet. I will be 99% sure whether your mould has been successful, or if I want to take extra casts (so long as baby is happy). Occasionally I have an issue after you’ve left, and I might need to call you back another day, but this is extremely rare.

For every cast you would like made I need to take an impression. The mould cannot be reused and although I can create duplicates of your casts, I prefer to take a separate cast for each mould you’d like created – each cast is then as unique as your baby. For hands I often need extra moulds to ensure you get the best results.

Most casting appointments last about 45 minutes for a set of three or four casts.

PAYING FOR YOUR ORDER

You are very welcome to split the cost of your order. Your booking deposit will be deducted from your order total and you can pay half your balance at your appointment and the remaining balance on collection, in approximately five weeks’ time. I accept cash, PayPal, bank transfer and most major credit cards.

AFTER

Casting

unmould cast appointmentAfter you leave, I will begin to cast your moulds. This stage involves filling your impressions with a high quality, high density stone. Once this is done, your casts will be left to cure and set for several hours. When they are ready to unmould I remove the casting material to reveal the cast of your baby. The raw cast at this stage might have lumps and bumps, air bubbles or inclusions. At this stage your casts each get an initial ‘clean up’, which can take anywhere from ten minutes per cast to a couple of hours! (I am a perfectionist and a night owl!) They now begin to dry.

Drying

The drying stage is so important. Remember how long nine months felt waiting for your baby to arrive? But it was worth the wait, wasn’t it? Life casting is the same! Giving your casts the time to dry naturally and correctly gives them the strength, density and longevity that you want from them. Depending on the size of your casts, I advise a minimum completion time of four to five weeks. During this time, they will undergo more cleaning and perfecting, and I also cut and sand them to the appropriate shapes and angles for the frame and finish you have chosen.

Cleaning

cleaning a cast appointmentThe final cleaning stage for a raw cast is my favourite part! This is when your casts are as impressively perfect as I want them to be. They are then ready to be finished.

 Painting

I use several layers and techniques to bring out all the detail in your casts, with whatever finish you have chosen.

Framing

Your frame choice, photographs and name plaques are now all ready and waiting, and it’s time to assemble your finished piece. A final 24-hour wait until everything sets and cures, then it’s time to collect.

Collection

Once your order is ready I will let you know. We will arrange a suitable collection time and you can come and take your Impressive Memories order home with you.Luxury Silver single

Impressive Thank you to…

Impressive mummy Victoria Duff and her beautiful daughter Amber, who helped create all the images in this article.

Impressive photographer Lisa Christie, from Lisa Christie Photography who provided the excellent photography for this article.

I’m ready to book an appointment – take me there now!

Tell me more about lifecasting

How much will it cost?

Want to chat? – get in touch here

 

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