Top 50 Crafters

An Introduction to Die Cutting!

Posted on 2nd October 2012
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Good Morning!
Today I am sharing with you all something a little different to what I usually do, instead of a creation I have a little tutorial or introduction if you'd like to the basics of Die Cutting! Some people are still quite unsure about this so I do hope that once you have read this you will be tempted to give it a go! 
A simple way to describe Die Cutting is to create a variety of paper shapes or letters from card stock using a a metal shape, which is called a die. In order to do this you will need a die cutting machine, there are a variety on the market but I personally own the Cuttlebug and this is what I have used for this post.
Today I shall give you some quick step by steps on how to cut out shapes, emboss and even use the die as a stencil & mask!
 
CUTTING
Let's start off with the easiest step, cutting out your Die! To do this on a cuttlebug simply select which Die you would like to use ... I have chosen a basic small circle by Spellbinders and place in your Cuttlebug as followed:
From the bottom layer up ...
PLATE A
PLATE B
PIECE OF CARDSTOCK
DIE (Facing downwards ... you will know if it is doing this as the smoother side will be facing upwards)
PLATE C
Run the 'sandwich' through your die by turning the handle.
 
 
 
(Remember you can use other Die Cutting Machines for this, simply check the manual to find out which of their plates to use or simply have a look on youtube! )
 
EMBOSSING
You can also use your dies to emboss, if I wanted to do this on this circle it would create a raised area in the centre giving the circle a more 3D effect. 
To do this in your Cuttlebug place as followed:
PLATE A
PLATE B
DIE (with the shape still in place inside)
SPELLBINDERS EMBOSSING MAT (If you do not have one you can create a shim by layering a magnetic sheet and cardstock)
3 PIECES OF CARD (This is just to add thickness to the sandwich so you get a more clearer embossed effect)
PLATE B
 
 
USING DIES AS STENCILS & MASKS
You can also use your dies to create some lovely effects with inks! One reason people use this technique is to create a background to their stamped image. To use your die as a stencil simply place it facing downwards on a piece of cardstock and hold in place with a piece of masking tape after cutting.
Using an ink blending tool blend over the top and then when finish pop out your design and you will be left with a lovely effect!
You can also use your cut out designs as a mask, by placing it on a piece of cardstock and inking over it again not only are you left with a great inked design but your due cut will also be inked rather nicely!
 
 
Well I hope you have found today's post helpful and will urge you to give Die Cutting a try!

Before I go I wanted to share with you my version of the September Tag from 12 TAGS OF 2012 by Tim Holtz! In case you are unfamiliar with what this is Tim makes a different tag each month for people to make their own version of. You can follow his design completely or give it your own twist :)
Here is Tim's Tag :

 
Now here is my Tag! 
The butterflies are also Dies that I have simply cut out, covered with Black Paint, Distress Stickles & 3D Gloss ...
 
 
HAPPY CRAFTING!
NATALIE
XXX
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