How not to do this

Today I decided to try something new. I saw a card that had been made with a word die, with ¾ of the word standing free as a header at the top. I have some patterned header dies specifically for this purpose, and I love the look of them. I thought today I would try it out with dies not designed for the task. The results are not perfect, but I’m showing you what happened in case you try it too – my mistakes might save you a bit of time!

I attempted two ways: one with a word die and one with individual letters.

The basic principle is that you will be making a tent fold (or top folding) card. You place the die(s) in the centre, but you don’t put the lower portion of the die(s) between the cutting plates. So you are kind of hanging it off the edge really and only cutting the top part of the letters or words.

Here is where I made rookie mistake number one. For some reason best left between me and my maths teacher, I thought I would have to make the highest cutting point (so in these cards it is the ‘’l’ in celebrate) fall about where I wanted to fold. Duh! Obviously, obviously not. I now have a stunted card.

What you actually need to do is:

Cut your base piece of card to size. Say you have a strip which measures 10.5 x 30cm, your fold line (don’t score it yet though!) will be at 15cm.

This is the tricky bit. I think some dies and letters will work better than others. Position your dies(s) so that at least 2/3 of the die is above your (imagined) fold line, but you need to consider the shapes a bit too. Remember the bottom part of the letter will not be defined at all, so it needs to be obvious from the free-standing part what the letter actually is. For example in the WISH card here, I should have moved the S higher up. I thought wonky would be fun, but once cut and folded I just had a strange hook shape, like a flipped question mark! All the other letters were fine. I fixed it by cutting the letters again and sticking them over the top, which is not quite what I intended and in the picture it does look a bit like that was all I did but at least now I know for next time. For the ‘celebrate’ card it didn’t matter too much, because the die on its own is not clear anyway and you really need the stamp too.

Run it through your die cutter, as above, making sure the plates don’t cover the lower part of the letters.

Remove your dies and now you crease and fold at your centre line. Make sure you score in between letters too.

And done. Now you just need to decorate!

What else did I learn? That the single letter dies should have been closer together. Perhaps I should have cut them individually and I might have spaced them better.

Both methods work ok – it just depends on what you have to hand.

You have a bit of wiggle room if you need to move your centre fold a millimetre or two once you have cut the dies, just trim the short edges of your card accordingly.

Oh yeah, and my maths is still rubbish, but I didn’t really need to be reminded of that….

Supplies: Hunkydory Adorable Scorable card; Altenew Super Script die and stamp; Xcut Wedding Alphabet & Numbers dies



33 thoughts on “How not to do this

      1. For me, what went wrong is almost always what I have, lol. It’s good to talk about though, I find it much more interesting. I really like it when artists (like yourself) talk about their methods and what works and what doesn’t.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Nice cards, I like something different! I was afraid to even speak to my Maths teacher..probably why I am completely rubbish at the subject..!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Lol! In answer to a ‘if a=3 and b=8, what does c equal?’ test question I believe I wrote ‘cat’ once out of sheer frustration.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I mean, how are you even supposed to work that out? I wrote a story for my Maths CSE…it was quite a good story but I still failed…

        Liked by 1 person

      3. They must serve some useful purpose. Like wasps. We just don’t know what it is. I know someone useful. I will find out….unless she reads this and steps in to explain??

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Lol! I hope so…they never helped me with the household budget! As for wasps, I suppose it’s the butterfly/moth thing…a wasp is a bald bee and that makes it really angry.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. If anyone could make something more difficult than it actually is, that would be me! I have an amazing knack of making the simplest of tasks difficult! You may not be a maths genius but you have explained what to do – and not what to do – extremely well! Thanks 🙂 I think your cards are both fab by the way 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I probably should have taken photos along the way but I just forgot. I expect we make it more complicated because we are highly complex, supremely intelligent creatures, right?!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Puff …. you weren’t actually making a card.
    You were playing with words and testing an idea.
    Therefore: nothing was ‘wrong’ because you were just trying it out. [cough&smile]

    Right… I share my most special, magical motto with you … write it out, pin it on the wall and remind yourself of it every day:

    . . . . . . . “If at first you don’t succeed, . . . destroy all evidence that you ever tried.

    You’re welcome. 🙂

    Love you, you funny playmate. ~ Cobs. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh it’s ok, I knew I was only trying out something. The good news is I know how to do it now! Love your motto though… I am pretty sure I will eed it at some point…. Xx

      Liked by 1 person

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