Christine’s CardMaker Tip
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In the card-making industry we?re seeing more and more beautiful and intricate dies being developed. They add that extra elegance to a design that I really appreciate. However, I?ve found that if you?re not careful, these intricate dies can be difficult to use, so I thought I?d give you a few tips today on some things I?ve found that are helpful in using intricate dies to get a polished result.

Using Dies Ph1

As you can see this die not only has many intricate details, but it is also a die that can be layered, in that different parts of the set of dies can be combined to created multiple effects. This leaves some fragile pieces to try and push out of the die.

Using Dies Ph2Using Dies Ph3

What I?ve found that works like a charm is to first layer a piece of waxed paper over top of the cut edge of the die before you place your cardstock on the die. This will prevent your paper from sticking to the die when you are trying to remove those tiny intricate elements.

Using Dies Ph4

However, before you remove your paper from the die, Spellbinder?s? dies are designed to also emboss your die cut and that?s one element I really love about them. But I don?t always find that running them through a machine another time with an embossing pad gets the intricate embossed details I?m looking for. I really like sharp detailed embossing.

So, what I do instead is take my die and paper still in the die after it?s been cut, and pull out my stylus (remember that old tool you used against your window to emboss through a template?), and run it up against the edges of the paper within the die. It gives you perfect sharp embossed lines. It also gets into those little details of an intricate die to really make them shine. Even if you use the waxed paper first in your die you can emboss right through both layers easily.

Using Dies Ph6

Using Dies Ph5

Now you can assemble your card, but those beautiful dies sometimes have tiny spaces, which are more difficult to adhere to your card. Here?s where I add some adhesive dots for holding things together and I use my stylus to pick up the adhesive dots (because they?re SO very sticky!) and place them where I want them to be.

Finished Card

And there you have a beautiful die cut showing off all of its wonderful details!


Supplies used: Classic white cardstock from Flourishes; elegant eggplant cardstock and adhesive dots from Stampin’ Up!; God Loves You and Scripture Series 1 stamp sets from Our Daily Bread designs; Memento tuxedo black and elderberry ink pads from Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko; Copic® markers (G40, G43, G46, RV13, RV14, RV17, V05, V06, V09) from Imagination International Inc.; velvet ribbon from May Arts Ribbon; Radiant Rectangles die templates (#S5-161) from Spellbinders? Paper Arts.

32 Responses to Christine’s CardMaker Tip

  1. Edna Burgess says:

    Thanks, great tips. I already use wax paper, but like the stylus tip. Edna

  2. Linda says:

    Very pretty card. That die is going one my “I want it” list.
    I find if I mist the paper lightly before embossing I get a very nice emboss.

  3. Patti J. says:

    Thanks for the great tip, Christine! I use wax paper, and still have troubles with some of the more intricate dies, so I will try the stylus trick, and see if it helps!

  4. Tami B says:

    Thanks for the tip about the stylus. Radiant Rect. is probably my most favorite die, but I have a dickens of a time using it. My biggest problem with it is getting it to cut completely.

    • Erin Stevens says:

      I have the same problem with getting mine to cut as well.. I have another one of the newer ones that will not cut all the way through in several spots. I have been using my stylus on them to try to get more of it cut. It helps but not completely.

      • barb macaskill says:

        try rotating your die between passes through the machine. I do this with all of my dies and it works great. If that still doesn’t help try using an extra sheet of cardstock over the backside of the die as a shim to give it that little bit of extra contact with the rollers. Hope these tips help!

  5. tammyK. says:

    Just got started using the Spellbinders dies. I didn’t have wax paper on hand but did have parchment paper. It really really helps!! I was also disappointed in the embossing details after running it through a second time with the rubber mat. I am going to try the stylus!! Using the stylus for the glue dots was new to me too!! Thank you for sharing your tips!!

  6. Beverly says:

    Thank you so much for these tips….will make using these dies so much easier!

  7. Margaret says:

    I use the wax paper trick as well and get super results. I also add a shim of thin cardboard from a cereal box and run it through my Cuttlebug.

  8. Sherry says:

    Thanks for the great tip. I have that die and have not tried it yet but I do have some others and have found that if I emboss it and then cut it out it works better for me, but I will try it your way and see if that helps. Thanks!!! 🙂

  9. Thanks for the great tips..I am going to use that very die soon to make cards…also the embossing tip!

  10. JoAnn B. says:

    Beautiful card. Thanks for the tips.

  11. Charlene says:

    Great tips! I would like to be the inventor of some type of product that teflon coats these dies, something that sprays on and dries immediately before each use! Wouldn’t that be cool?

    Love the stylus idea!

  12. Joanne Atwell says:

    Thanks for the tips. I love those intricate dies, too, but sometimes I rip them when trying to get them out of the die. I also love the stylus tip 🙂 That’s a beautiful card, by the way!!

  13. Donna Simons says:

    thanks for the wax paper suggestion

  14. steph says:

    Awesome, beautiful card

  15. Thank you for sharing, what a great idea to use the stylus

  16. barbara macaskill says:

    Thank you for the tips!

  17. Sandra Smith says:

    A beautifully created card!

  18. Becky Green says:

    FABULOUS TUTORIAL CHRISTINE!!!!!!!!!! LOVELY CARD!!!!!!!!!! 🙂 THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

  19. JoAnn K Delery says:

    thanks for the stylus tip! you are so right, i haven’t used my stylus for its intended purpose in a good many years. i have had pretty good results with wax paper, but i have not had your great results. i won’t stop trying though! thanks for sharing.

  20. Lagene says:

    Gorgeous card! Thanks for the tips!!!

    • ann says:

      At the SCRAPBOOK EXPO today in Orlando a lady told me she uses a double piece of waxed paper. Seemed like it worked well for her. TFS!!

  21. tracey says:

    This card is so beautiful, thanks for the stylus tips.

  22. Ivanka says:

    Great tip!! I don’t have too many intricate dies yet, but they are def. on my wish list. Your card is gorgeous!!!!

  23. Melanie Muenchinger says:

    What a beauty, Christine, I just got these dies and want to go make some cqrds now!

  24. Adair says:

    These are great tips for using these dies! Thank you!

  25. Jan Shore, NSW Australia says:

    I know this thread is a year old but it just came up on a feed…

    Anyway, my tip is one I got from Christina Griffiths in the UK and that is to rub the die with a tumble dryer sheet. This really aids in the release of even the most intricate die. As an added bonus, the paper smells pretty too!

    I will try the stylus tip, however, for deeper embossing.

  26. Petrina says:

    Thank you for sharing with great photos.

    I cannot wait to try your techniques.

    Happy thoughts,

  27. barb macaskill says:

    I keep a box of waxed paper (that hubby keeps trying to confiscate)in my craft oasis for this very purpose but have never thought to use my stylus to do the emboss feature!! Thanks for the great tip!!

  28. Jeannette Friman says:

    Hi – what a great idea, I just have one problem, I do not know what waxed papir is, and where I can puy it. I live in Denmark, but can buy from UK, Germany, The Netherlands and Scandinavia.

    Can someone give me some advice?

    Thanks in avance 🙂

    • Brooke says:

      Waxed paper is a paper that is made moisture-proof with a thin layer of wax. It is commonly used when cooking because it doesn’t stick to food. In the United States, it is found in grocery stores.

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