While I did spend money on this project, I feel that I will definitely use these tools again.
$30. total (with an educators' discount) was able to get me a Speedball Lino cutter (no.1) with 5 tips, two packages of 5.5"x8.5" Strathmore Cold Press Watercolor paper (12 pcs each), 1 (5 liq. oz.) tube of Blick water-soluble block printing ink (black), 1- 4" hard rubber brayer, and 4 pieces of 4"x6" Soft-Kut printing blocks.
1. I should have drawn/cut backwards to appear on the print correctly- OOPSIE!
2. I love using the water color paper because it's so stiff, though the texture, of course, does affect the print quality.
3. This new soft cut material cuts like BUTTER! No more slipping and gouging your hand (or worse)- and no need for a wood table hook. Downside- small, detail cuts are easier with less force, but the material gives so much that it's hard to not accidentally cut into that delicate area; also, when printing, the block wiggles/gives so if you burnish a little too hard with the spoon, the print becomes smudgy. I also think that this material would break down quicker than linoleum- but how many prints do I need to make, anyway?? (famous last words...)
4. Ink on my fingers = smudges on the paper!!