How to Stretch Your Die Cuts

Posted by Chrissie Tobas
Crafters are always looking for more ways to use their supplies. Learn how to stretch your die cuts by using them to create a simple background for a DIY card.

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Let's stretch our dies; they can be used for so much more than just die cuts!

Supplies You Will Need:

Watercolor Paper

Kraft Cardstock (cut to 8.5x5.5)

Waterbrush (or brush and cup of water)

My Favorite Things London Mouse Stamp Set

My Favorite Things London Skyline Die Set

My Favorite Things Terrific Ties Stamp Set

Versafine Onyx Black Ink

Clear Embossing Powder

Heat Gun

Score Board

Teresa Collins Enamel Dots: Summer Stories Collection (Grey color)

Spectrum Noir Blendable Pencils (Colors 013, 074, 032, 028, 1136, 120, 088, 094)

Spectrum Noir Blending Solution

Spectrum Noir Paper Stumps

Spectrum Aqua Marker: Aquamarine (From the Primary Set)

Large Acrylic Block

Die Cutting Machine

To start things off, I placed the stamps and die I wanted to use down on a piece of watercolor cardstock (cut to 5.25 x 4) before stamping or cutting. This is a great way to decide upon a layout if you aren't sure where to start!

Next, I stamped the little soldiers in Black Onyx ink and heat embossed them with clear powder. I did this to protect the ink - I knew I'd be adding water and I didn't want the ink to bleed or smear.

I colored them in using Blendable pencils, Blending Solution and paper stumps.

I started out by adding color in the areas I wanted to be darker, or shadows, then used the blending solution and stumps to pull out the color to the lighter areas. By doing this, all of the colors are soft and smooth.

I also added some shadows underneath all of the feet and I combined my waterbrush with a Spectrum Aqua (watercolor marker) to create a lightly colored sky. To do this, I scribbled some Aquamarine onto an Acrylic Block and then added small amounts of water with the waterbrush. I grabbed the color and painted it onto the sky area. To make it soft and light, I added more water. I then set it aside to dry. You can use a heat gun to speed up the process. Make sure it is 100% dry before starting the next step.

Next, I placed the die down onto the panel. It will cut into what was just colored, but don't worry! We will piece it back together again. I recommend holding it down with washi or other respositionable tape so it doesn't move while cutting.

I then ran it through my die cutting machine. After it was cut, I added adhesive and stuck one piece down onto a Kraft base. The base is 8.5 x 5.5 and scored at 4.25. I placed the other cut piece down, matching it up to the bottom die cut. Both pieces are now back together again, forming one panel, but with a scene in the background!

To finish everything off, I added a sentiment from the Terrific Ties set and some enamel dots.

See how easy it was to create the perfect background, using a die in a different way? By combining both the positive and the negative cuts, we've adding a subtle, but important element to the card. This is a great way to stretch the supplies you already have. If you're looking for more inspiration, don't forget to check out the Ideas Section on the newly designed website!

Happy Crafting!