Want to know about my Tools Of The Trade!
In today’s mailbox I had a few of you asking about working with chipboard that I use in some of the printable projects. So here are a few tips, hope you find something useful . . .
First . . . I buy almost ALL of my supplies online from Amazon.com. Because I have Amazon Prime, I can find most everything I need with free 2-day shipping so it’s a fantastic deal for me! Below are my top “must have” tools.
I use a light to medium weight chipboard, depending on the project and often will mix both in one project. I get both from Amazon.com and here are links to each. I’m not sure how easy it would be for you to locate the chipboard locally? It’s possible that you might have a paper manufacturer near you that might sell you some?
- Light weight Chipboard
- Medium weight Chipboard – this can be found in natural, black and white colors. They also have a small pack in various sizes I believe.
- Georgia Pacific White Cardstock 110lb – I use this for printing all my projects.
From the Photo . . .
- Fiskars self healing mat This is a new addition and I LOVE it! The 18×24 size is perfect and gives me lots of working room. The bonus is that it’s double sided, light grey on one side, dark grey on the other allowing me to see perfectly when cutting both light and dark materials. This is a tool you will use a LOT so don’t scrimp . . . buy the best you can afford. This particular one is a steal, I think, at only $20.99!
- Fiskars 2×14″ centering ruler One edge has from 1″ to 14″ while the opposite side had 0 at the center and goes to 6″ on each end, allowing you to find the center of a shape when needed $6.93.
- Martha Stewart Deluxe Scoring board with paper trimmer and envelope ruler AWESOME tool! Includes: 17 Double-sided project templates, 1 Cutting shuttle, 1 Scoring stylus, 1 Envelope guide, 1 Replacement blade, 1 Blade cover, 1 Set of detailed instructions. If you use the link and scroll down the page you will find details showing the product.
- Bone folder – any brand will do as long as it’s sturdy . . . don’t buy a flimsy one!
- Score Tape (1/4″ and 1/2” sizes) I buy these in packs of 3 per size.
- Aileens Tacky Glue – quick dry and regular. You can also find refill jugs for this!!!
- (My MAIN Cutting Tool) – Fiskars Rotary Cutting Tool – Replacement Blades – I’ve used this type of cutting tool since quilting many years ago and LOVE it. I find it easier to control for general cutting, over a craft knife. For one . . . it cuts straight down, not at an angle which often happens with a craft knife. Secondly . . . I’ve used the same blade for over 2 years, cutting thick chipboard and it is still sharp enough to nick my hand if I rub up against the blade!!! Speaking of this . . . a great feature of this tool is a little button you push to move the blade out of its protective cover when you use it, push the button with your thumb and the blade pops right back inside the protective cover! I almost never cut myself with this tool lol. It’s also much nicer to your hand and great for those who might have Arthritis in your hands.
- Any brand pop dots or foam squares – thin and thick and in different sizes. I get mine at Michaels – Recollections brand because there are several sizes in a package.
- Martha Stewart Craft Knife before a few days ago I used a traditional old style craft knife and wow, what a difference this one makes! It fits in your hand like a pen and makes it so much easier to use.
- Small type scissors for fussy cutting – these are a must when using printables! They get down inside tiny areas.
- EK Success Honey Bee Non Stick craft scissors – a must if you use any type of double sided tape!
- We R Memory Keepers Brad Setter and Piercing Tool AWESOME tool!
Other Supplies . . .
- Tim Holtz Distress Ink – Vintage Photo another of my “must haves”. I also like the Walnut Stain and Black Soot.
- Magnets great for closures – these are hard to find sometimes.
- Maya Road Bakers Twine used on the binding for all my Journal kits
- Flat Back Pearls One can NEVER have ENOUGH of these! (grin)
- Crop A Dial Corner Chomper – Deco corner
- Stamp inks/pads – I prefer Close To My Heart stamp inks.
- Spectrum Noir Alchohol ink markers
- Gold and Silver Sharpie metallic pens
- White opaque marker/pen
- Black Sharpie marker
- Matte spray sealer any brand
- Baby wipes – a must for all craft rooms – will take ink and glue off tools, hands and surfaces – for the most part.
- Some type of clear glue for finer type elements
- Metal glue for fixtures
Ok so there you have it . . . my most loved and used tools. If I find anything new I’ll be sure and update the list!
Now . . . some tips on working with Chipboard
- Cutting Chipboard using the rotary cutter, you don’t have to worry about cutting straight that much but, no matter what tool you use, hold your cutting blade as straight as possible and up against the ruler. I tend to stand when I cut because it allows me to put more pressure on my left hand holding the ruler. More pressure on the ruler will help keep it from moving when you cut. Also check your ruler . . . most have a printed side (with the measurements on it) and this side will grab the surface better than the non printed slicker side. Some people I know have taken a light grit sandpaper and sanded the unprinted side of their ruler to give it some gripping power. Place the printed side down on your surface when you cut. If you find that you are not cutting straight, even with a ruler, try not pushing so hard on the blade while you cut and make several cuts to get thru the chipboard instead of one. Better to cut 3 times straight than once crooked.
- The Martha Stewart score/cut board will cut thru both the light and medium weight chipboard but you will have to make several passes to get all the way thru. NOTE: If you use the board to cut your chipboard, you will need to use it for all cutting – chipboard and papers. Switching from a craft knife, rotary blade to the score/cut board can throw your measurements off! Last but not least . . . don’t get in a hurry when you cut your chipboard! Slow and steady makes for good clean and straight cuts!
- Cut all of your chipboard pieces first and use a repositionable tape to attach the pieces together while checking fit. If needed, straighten up your cuts or trim as needed till fit is good. And don’t worry if you are off a tad, this is a “Handmade” project and imperfections make it unique! No matter how good someone is, NOBODY makes PERFECT handmade items!!!
Working with scrapbook papers – if you prefer to use ready made papers with your projects, you can always use my printable sheets as templates, cutting around the outside of images. Pick papers that are the thicker ones, not the flimsy thin style. The thicker ones will hold up better and are easier to cut and work with for 3d projects. Printable sheets hold up well also but do need to be spray sealed, if using a matte finish, to protect your project from the elements. DO NOT use Mod Podge!!!! It will, over time, yellow your papers!
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