Well after a massive shopping spree: Card stock paper @40% off, die cut machine as well as my other craft accessories, I realized I need more space than the dining room table. A very nice extra “catch all” room would be destined to become my PERFECT CRAFT ROOOOOM!
After reviewing storage accessories, other craft room set ups online, and prices, I realized that I wanted a cozy, homey, neat, access-able room with my supplies within reach. This led me to the local thrift store run by the Salvation Army. When we came the next day to pick up a school surplus computer table measuring 3′ x 2.5′ we’d bought for $25, they announced that all furniture would be 40% off! Score! So of course we bought the other two matching tables for $15 each and a country style storage hutch for $12. I’m almost finished setting it up. I’m awaiting the cork board I got for FREE at Overstock.
After making the pop box card/envelopes and designing the contents for my Explosion Box, I realized a lot of hand cutting was involved. For what I had in mind a paper die cutter was definitely needed. This is my journey and research into picking the right paper die cut machine for ME. EVERYONE’s needs may be different.
No expensive cartridges
Good customizable software
Ability to cut 12″x 12″, 8.5″x11″, scrap card stock
Ability to cut other materials
My research led me to the most popular but after reviewing forums, I realized #1 & #2 of my criteria. I also knew I would not use the majority of cartridge designs, did not want to maintain or buy mats and would prefer to design many of my own designs. You Tube was a good resource for different die cut machines. Amazon.com , blogs, and Yahoo Group forums were also great research sources. Next I set a price, notated my criteria in a notebook then made a comparison chart for each of the models I was considering. It came down to the Pazzle and the ECrafte by Craftwell. For me I really wanted to use third party software to enhance what I could do. I listed the pros and cons. Next I Googled the prices. This led me to Overstock.com for the eCraft where I not only saved a lot but saved more by joining the OClub and gained $42 in reward points and FREE shipping. I chose Make The Cut software to create cutting files. Their website had a special and I saved $20 dollars!! WOOT WOOT! It also turns out they had recently joined Craftwell to make the software compatible with the eCrafter. (I learned that from the YahooGroup forum). *What I’m learning is that it’s SOFTWARE, SOFTWARE, SOFTWARE. Then the machine you want/need. It turns out that not only can the eCrafter cut out intricate designs as small as 1/2″ but it also cuts, paper, cardstock, vinyl, vellum, fabric, some types of felt, magnetic, chip board, etc. Anything not thicker than 1mm. Best of all, it came in a variety of colors including my favorite color of blue! HURRAY!!
My very first card was a pop up cube in an envelope. This was a great resource. I loved this instructional video! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHir04ChSHw&list=PLDC547F092783608A I found this to be a fantastic for a Thank You card/envelope combination. After a recent trip I thanked two of my relatives by making each of them one of these as a “thank you’ for hosting us during our travels.
As a cross stitch designer, it has always been a great challenge to find appropriate framing that won’t bust the bank. Traditional cross stitch framing usually involve glass and square dimensions. I was inspired to design my own line of original cross stitch patterns. www.stitchathome.wordpress.com I wanted nice frames for my small sample pieces without the expense. I spent weeks watching card making tutorials on www.youtube.com for ideas. THAT is how I came to be fascinated with iris paper folding, origami, scrap booking/ card making and paper die cut machines. My favorite cards are the easel cards, tri-fold cards, exploding (magic) box, pop cards/envelopes and the penny slide cards. My fancy paper experience begins . . .