When I first became a HUGE fan of T!m Holtz, I tried a few of my "frugal" tricks including making my own distress ink tools so I could spend more of my hard earned $$ on the inks themselves.
Since there has been alot of discussion on this subject over on the ATT (All things Tim) yahoo group, I thought I'd share a few pics of my version of this tool.
I started with the regular round disk cosmetic sponges, a sheet of fun foam, some velcro (from a fabric/craft store), and some good liquid glue (I used 3 in 1 Beacon glue). I used 2" square blocks as the base for my tool. I found these at a scrapbooking garage sale and picked up a set of 9 for only $2.
I do have to say that the cosmetic sponges aren't quite as good as the TH distressing pads, but hey, when you can get a bag of 100 of these cosmetic sponges for under $5, I'm good with the lesser quality.
These sponges do work for a while, and I noticed when they were "done", I could just pull them off of the velcro backing and glue another sponge on the velcro using the 3 in 1 Beacon glue (fabric tac would also work).
I even got creative and thought I'd decorate my homemade distress ink tools...but the novelty quickly wore off, lol...
Now that I teach "Tim" classes via my Frugal Scrappin' classes, I have "graduated" to the official distress tools, but I still use my homemade tools as well. I have found that my homemade tools AND the Tim tools play very well together, lol...
You may notice that I have also labeled my distress tools AND distress inks...this has REALLY been a LIFESAVER and TIMESAVER for me. I just used a plain white sticker page (with no individual labels) and typed a list using the "table" function in Word. Then I could cut the strips to size. I have just about enough "tools" to have one for each color of my distress inks.