Die Cutting Tips + GIVEAWAY + Discount Code
Hi there! Today I am showcasing a bunch of cards I made with die cutting. In the video I share a bunch of random die cutting tips. Just a warning… this video and post have a TON of card examples!
[All supplies are linked to multiple sources in the thumbnails at the end of this post. Compensated affiliate links used at no cost to you.]
After seeing all the new Birch Press Design dies, I had to buy them! Although the price point is higher on several of the layering die sets (since there are 3 dies sold together), I find they are a good investment for me as I will use them a lot for making lots of fast, ornate-looking cards. My video shows many ways to use these dies along with many random die cutting tips.
For all of my die cutting, I used the Gemini Junior Die Cut Machine because it is excellent at cutting intricate dies. However, I tested these dies on my Big Shot Express and Spellbinders Platinum and they worked great with those machines, too.
THE BASICS OF LAYERING DIE CUTS
My first card features the Birch Press Prem Layering Dies. I assembled the layers on a white notecard and used foam tape behind the center piece for dimension. The sentiment uses the Birch Press Thanks Sugar Script Die and Birch Press Just Because Stamp Set. Nothing fancy here – just showing how quickly these cards can come together… although it looks like it took a ton of time to make!
For adhering many layered die cuts together, I used Gina K Connect Glue. I highly recommend this adhesive since it dries fast, clear, and strong. It also doesn’t get clogged and comes out easily. Saves me a lot of time!
My next card shows how to create a simple window on the front of a card with a sentiment on the inside showing through. I again used the Birch Press Prem Layering Dies… and a sentiment from the Memory Box Spring Lilacs Stamp Set. Be sure to watch the video to see how this was done!
Another great way to get more out of your dies is to dry emboss them using a die cut machine and a Spellbinders Embossing Mat. The Birch Press Prem Layering Dies are excellent for this look. I added layered die cuts in the center of an embossed circle… and a sentiment from the Birch Press Dragonfly Greeting Stamp Set.
You can get new looks from intricate dies by layering several of the same die cut together… but slightly offset. For this card I used one of the dies from the Birch Press Dazzler Layer Die Set and layered four die cuts. The sentiment features the Birch Press Kindness Sugar Script Die and Birch Press Just Because Stamp Set.
USE SPECIALTY PAPERS
Another very simple way to give your die cuts a new look is to use specialty papers, such as wood paper, vellum, foil paper, and more. I decided to use glitter cardstock today and I love the look!
For this card I used the Birch Press Adi Layer Die Set – such a lovely and unique set! I added a die cut of Simon Says Stamp Glitter Cardstock for sparkle and it gives so much to this simple card. The Birch Press Hello Sugar Script Die cut is the perfect sentiment.
Here is another example using Simon Says Stamp Glitter Cardstock. This glitter paper cuts beautifully! I used it for the Birch Press Big Hugs Sugar Script sentiment on a background made again with the Birch Press Adi Layer Dies.
Many times when die cutting intricate dies, there are lots of “leftover” bits and pieces. These often end up in the trash but instead could be used as confetti for a shaker card or as accents. For my example, I arranged them on a card using the main die cut as a guide.
For these cards, I used the new Birch Press Viva Layer Dies. Before cutting the dies from colorful cardstock, I backed the cardstock with Couture Creations Double Sided Adhesive. This adhesive turns die cuts into “stickers.” I then temporarily held the die cuts onto a white notecard and added the little bits and pieces into the openings. Since the adhesive was already on the back, this took little time! Once all the layered pieces were in place, I removed the big die cut and am left with a fun pattern of little pieces.
The sentiment showcases the Birch Press Kindness Sugar Script Die and Birch Press Just Because Stamp Set.
You can easily make any die cut look like enamel simply by covering with a few layers of clear embossing powder. This is especially lovely when you use layered dies.
After adhering layers of the Birch Press Bali Layer Die cuts together, I pressed my Versamark Ink pad on top and added clear embossing powder. After heat setting it and letting it cool, I repeated the process four times. The dimension and shine looks like enamel. For the card on the left, I added the circle piece to a card along with white cardtock die cuts from the Birch Press Grace Layer Dies… and a sentiment formed with the Birch Press Sending Sugar Script Die and Poppy Stamps Sending Scribbles Stamp Set. The card on the right is simple… with a sentiment from the Birch Press Dragonfly Greeting Stamp Set.
Here is another example showing both layered die cuts and a sentiment covered with clear embossing. This card features the Birch Press Dazzler Layer Dies, Birch Press Big Sending Sugar Script Dies, and Altenew Quilled Elegance Stamp Set “sunshine.”
WATERCOLOR DIE CUTS
You can also make die cuts look more interesting by adding color with watercolor. And it is simple!
I started by layering Birch Press Kaleidoscope Layer Die Cuts created with watercolor paper. I then scribbled my Arteza Real Brush Watercolor Pens over the die cuts and sprayed them generously with water. (You can use any watercolor medium for this technique.) Finally, I added several sprays of Tsukineko Shimmer Spritz for shimmer. I used the Birch Press Big Hugs Sugar Script Dies for a quick sentiment.
And by the way, this card was inspired by the cover of the Craft a Life You Love Book. I highly recommend this book for anyone who loves to be creative!
ARCH WORD DIES
A fun way to use word dies is to add them at an arch on your card instead of straight. Here, I added the Birch Press Thanks Sugar Script Die to follow the border arch created with the Birch Press Kessa Arch Layer Dies.
I also added little drops of Tonic Crystal Glaze into the holes along the border. This is another fun way to add a bit of shine to die cuts.
CREATE FOAM STAMPS
You can also use any dies to create stamps. Simply die cut shapes from White Craft Foam and temporarily adhere the foam shapes onto an acrylic block. I like to use dye inks, but any inks should work.
For this example, I used the Birch Press Sparkler Butterfly Layer Dies. It is fun to stamp with the foam die cuts from a layered die set… it looks like you have a layered stamp set! This is excellent for one-layer cards. I created additional butterfly foam stamps from the Birch Press Butterfly Garden Layer Dies and added a Birch Press Dragonfly Greeting sentiment and pearls.
My next two cards feature the amazing Birch Press Butterfly Garden Layer Dies. Those backgrounds are so incredible!
The Birch Press Just Because Sugar Script Die Set is such a great sentiment for any occasion.
ALTER WORD DIES
This second card shows how you can easily alter word dies to create new words. Here, I cut the Birch Press Big Wishing Sugar Script Dies to make the word “wish.” This is a great way to stretch your supplies. All the other pieces are from the Birch Press Butterfly Garden Layer Dies.
COLOR DIE CUTS
Colored cardstock often costs more than white cardstock. So one way to make colorful dies is to color white die cuts. You can do this with paint, ink, markers and more.
For my card, I die cut the Birch Press Sparkler Butterfly Layer Dies from white cardstock and then colored the die cuts with Copic Markers. Although I colored them solid, you could instead create shading and such. I also added a single layer from the Birch Press Butterfly Garden Layer Dies to the background… and I used foam adhesive for dimension. (That makes a big difference!) The sentiment is a Birch Press Hello Sugar Script Die cut.
NEW COLOR COMBOS
Die cutting is a great way to test out new color combos. I really wanted to try the newest colors of Gina K Designs Cardstock so I put them to use with the Birch Press Grace Layer Dies. Since the colors were bold, I used a kraft cardstock notecard and a simple Birch Press Celebrate Sugar Script Die sentiment.
Covering layered die cuts (or any die cuts) with metallic embossing powder is a great way to change up a card’s look. Here, I used the same colors of cardstock as the last example, but covered it with a few layers of Hero Arts White Satin Pearl Embossing Powder. The metallic shine with a touch of color is such a unique look. I used the outside portion of the Birch Press Grace Layer Dies along with a sentiment from the incredible Gina K Designs Lettered and Lovely Stamp Set.
Whenever you have an die cut with openings, it is fun to add lots of colors behind it. Be sure to watch the video to see how to easily determine where the colors go!
For my card, I used the Birch Press Grace Layer Dies and quick coloring with Copic Markers. Oh – and I added a sentiment to my envelope from the The Ink Road Stamps I Made a Thing Stamp Set.
SPARKLE AND SHINE
To make word die cuts stand out more on my cards, I like to cover them with a layer of Tonic Aqua Shimmer Pen and Tonic Crystal Glaze. This gives rounded dimension and makes it look like a sparkly puffy sticker! Most of my cards today use this technique.
This card features a black Birch Press Hello Sugar Script Die cut covered with Tonic Aqua Shimmer Pen and Tonic Crystal Glaze and a background from the Birch Press Grace Layer Die Set.
I had lots of random die cuts leftover from all of the cards I made. So I covered the background of a white notecard with them for a fun look. Easy and fast to do! The sentiment is from the Birch Press Love Sugar Script Die and Birch Press Just Because Stamp Set.
DIE CUT BACKDROPS
Simple white die cuts make a great background for a focal image. You can add anything on top including a sentiment, stamped image, or another die cut.
My first example shows layered white die cuts behind a Birch Press Big Thanks Sugar Script sentiment. I covered the “thanks” with Tonic Aqua Shimmer Pen and Tonic Crystal Glaze for shine. I like how soft this card is.
I have been wanting to use this sentiment from the Cas-ual Fridays Supercalifragistic Stamp Set for some time and wanted to keep it in focus. So I added it to the center of a simple layered white die cut background. Perfect!
I share a ton of other tips in the video – so be sure to watch it. I hope it is helpful!
How would you like to win a layering die set from Birch Press? For your chance, leave a comment below by 11:59pmEST on 5/1/18 telling me if you like die cutting or stamping better. (To leave a comment, head to blog, scroll down to the bottom of this post and click the green “leave a comment” button. The winner’s name will be randomly selected, emailed and posted on my “Winners page” after the giveaway closes. International folks are eligible, too! Prize personally donated.)
So my friend, Dave, is the owner of Birch Press, Memory Box, and Poppy Stamps. I have used a lot of his dies over the years… they are the best designs in the industry. And now he has another company – – the Old School Chocolate Company! (After all… not much goes better with crafting then chocolate!) He sent me a box of treats and I am in love. I am not a big sweets person, but the peanut butter and mint are perfection. Unique, cute, and perfect for gifts.
If you want to try the Old School Chocolate Company, you use the code “YUMMY” and to get 50% off their order through 4/30/18. Yum!
Want to find the products I used? To make them easy for you to find, I have listed them below. (Compensated affiliate links used at no cost to you. Thank you! Affiliate and product disclosure can be found here. All products were personally purchased except those with an asterisk. As always, this post was NOT asked for, paid, or sponsored.) Click on the letters below each picture to go to a favorite store.