Hello, crafters! I am away still from my craft room (on a super long work trip in China) and cannot make any new projects, I’m bringing you inspiration by showcasing some old card ideas that all have something in common. Last time we talked about 5 Ways to Stamp Backgrounds using non background stamps and I’m glad you’ve found that useful.
Today, by popular request, I’m featuring 5 ways to use dies to get more use out of them. Dies are of course can be used for die cutting, but how else can we use this powerful tool in our crafting?
5 WAYS TO USE DIES – VIDEO TUTORIAL
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NEGATIVE DIE CUTTING
Let’s start with the basics. Die cutting. Everyone probably knows how to die cut, but did you know you do negative die cutting? You discard the positive die cut (or save if for another time) and just use what’s left – the negative. You can do some cool techniques with this and my favorite one is to use a smaller die, cut it repeatedly forming a die cut negative pattern. It takes longer to die cut, but this way I get way more use from my die.
Since stamping is such a hot topic these days, I thought I’d mention the fact that you can use your dies to make stamps! This is a super old technique, yet something that is still being used today. All you need for this is some fun foam, a die, a clear block and re-positionable adhesive.
You can die cut shapes from fun foam, ink them up like regular stamps and use them. They won’t be as durable, but this is still a fantastic way to get more use out of your dies.
The next cool thing you can use your dies for is dry embossing. This includes using both background dies to dry emboss an entire card background or single basic shape dies to outline an area on the card. It also includes using letter dies to dry emboss custom sentiments for your cards or taking it one step further by making custom embossing plates using individual die cuts. All of these will require the use of embossing mat.
One of the newer things you can use your dies for is hot foiling and this opens up a world of possibilities. You do need to own a hot foil machine and specialty thermal foils (those that are used in laminators will not work). Here you can add beautiful thin line foiled effects using your regular and coordinating dies. And you can even add foiled halo like outlines to your stamped images.
MAKE SHAKER, WINDOW & SHAPED CARDS
Finally, we can always use our dies to make window cards and I know this was number one reason back in the day why I got a die cutting machine and dies – I wanted to do be able to die circles and squares and rectangles in my card bases to make them into window cards! We can also use our dies to make shaker cards and use up those piles of sequins and beads we have in our stash and of course dies can be used to make shaped cards. I don’t have many examples of those, but it’s something I’m looking to fix in the future.
Do you have other tips and tricks for using dies? Share in the comments below! And while you are at it, let me know what product or idea you’d like featured in the next episode of this series?