Hello friends! What is die cutting? Today I’m answering that question while getting crafty with my new die cutting machine! In this post, I’ll share an easy tutorial that will walk you through all the steps of die cutting.
I’m die cutting a bunch of flowers today and couldn’t be happier! This post was created in partnership with Crafter’s Edge. All opinions, project ideas, and craftiness are my own 🙂
What are die cuts used for?
- FELT: Die cutting felt can be tricky, and honestly I have never been able to do it this easily before! You can cut felt hearts or make cute alphabet felt coasters!
- FABRIC: Die cutting fabric requires one extra step. You will need to iron on an adhesive sheet to the back of the fabric and then die cut. This stabilizes the fabric and cuts it beautifully! I’ve made a Puff Quilt, Rainbow Quilt pillow, Quilt with Triangles, and DIY face masks!
- PAPER: Die cutting paper has to be the the craftiest thing you will do. You can make a Paper Village, mix and match colors, and even try thicker papers like watercolor paper like I did in this Floral Die Cut card or Halloween Treat Bags!
How does a die cutting machine work?
Die cutting is using a metal die or shape to cut out similar shapes in multiples out of paper, fabric or felt. You apply enough pressure onto the die to cut the paper.
Every die cut machine comes with plates
Each die cutting machine comes with plates- these are just plastic rectangles they might be clear or colored. The idea is that a metal die and the object you wish to cut gets sandwiched between these plates. Some die cutting machines also have a metal plate (to cut fabric etc) or an embossing shim (soft and flexible that allows to emboss design onto paper)
Build your die cutting sandwich
To make your die cut sandwich- lay down your base plate first (this plate will get marked while being used, but that’s ok). Next on top of the base plate, lay your paper (or papers like I have here) followed by the die, with the cutting side down. Finally lay the top plate on top and feed this sandwich through the die cutting machine.
Run your sandwich through the machine
Run the sandwich once or twice through the machine by rotating the handle. And then disassemble the sandwich to reveal the die cuts!
Reveal your paper die cuts!
The paper might have got lodged into the die itself, but you can easily separate them to reveal beautiful die cut paper! If you are working with a smaller more intricate die design, you might need to use a craft pick to pop your paper die cut out.
Like I mentioned before, the base plate will start getting marks and impressions the more you use it. This is just the die doing its work as it’s supposed to! After a few months or years, you might need to change out the plate if needed.
The Crossover 2 die cutting machine
I’ve used many die cut machines over the years my friends, and here is my quick review of the Crossover 2 die cutting machine by Crafters Edge.
- It cuts not just paper! I have tried this machine with felt and fabric as well and it cuts intricate designs beautifully!
- Cuts thicker items: I was able to cut 5 sheets of cardstock at one go and also multiple layers of wool felt too. I’ve tried this machine with thick 140lb watercolor paper successfully too!
- It comes with adjustable rollers! This was groundbreaking for me. I had never seen a die cut machine before where you can alter the pressure applied by moving the rollers. I’ve always added extra papers, shims, or felt sheets to increase the pressure. But in this machine, you can easily adjust the pressure from 0 to 20 by simply turning the dial!
- Easily cuts multiple layers: Be it paper, wool felt, or adhesive-backed fabric- this machine easily cuts through layers and saves time. And the plates go through easily- you are not wrangling the machine at all! The Crafter’s edge website says 6 sheets at once.
- Folds and Stores: The machine folds into half to form a compact size that sits on a shelf nicely. The machine is a bit heavy, but not too heavy that I can’t lift it easily.
The most fascinating feature for me is this dial here- you can adjust it to increase or decrease the pressure applied to your die cut sandwich with the touch of a dial! This is so innovative and intuitive and makes die cutting SO much easier! 🙂 🙂 🙂
I hope enjoyed my Die Cutting Machine post today! Happy Crafting!