26 March 2016

Supplies: Papercrafting

I am still new to paper-crafting, which most call scrapbooking. I prefer to call it paper-crafting because I'm not making any scrapbooks and really don't have much interest in doing "journaling" as it is depicted by many. I am, though, incorporating paper into my mixed media crafting and even making a few cards, too. I drifted into it with the idea of being able to make boxes and cards to go along with the other items I make, like jewelry. I dipped my toe in and then fell headlong into the lake *laugh*

When obtaining supplies, I have to prioritise on budget considerations as well as a desire for good quality. Some of my earliest purchases have been more toward budget and convenience, especially when experimenting with something new. As I progress, some of my supplies will change. Luckily, I have been completely dissatisfied with very few of my early purchases.

BigShot and Die Cutting

I bought the Sizzix BigShot to cut and emboss thin metals as well as to be able to cut other materials that I could put into resin. But, I found the world of dies and die cutting and.. umm.. yeah. I am working on a rather diverse collection of various metal dies. I fell in love with Spellbinders intricate dies, Lawn Fawn's card basics and adorable dies. Tim Holtz's quirky dies, Vintage's metal embossing, Sizzix's embossing, Kaisercraft embossing, and so on. And then comes the need to organise them, of course. This one purchase, though, was a tipping point to drop kick me into paper-crafting for its own sake and not just as an adjunct to resin work or metal work. The tipping point for me, the final catalyst for me to buy the BigShot (with a 50% off coupon at the local Michaels) was a stumbling on a video from Scrapbooking Made Simple on the do's and don'ts for using a BigShot: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUt0cp-KJ5c


Before getting the BigShot, I had started to collect stamps since I discovered they could be used with clays (epoxy and polymer). Mostly I was looking for small stamps, ones that could be used as impressions in jewelry pieces. I don't recall when (or why) I started following the Canadian Scrapbooker (now renamed Creative Scrapbooker) Facebook page, but after getting the BigShot I actually started to participate in their Blog Hop for a chance at a give-away. One of the sites/blogs of the 2015 Twelve Days of Christmas hops was to Kraftin' Kimmie Stamps. DING! I found my favourite stamp maker. They're a very small Canadian company that really does make me feel like family. The stamps are quirky in all the right ways. I started collecting KKS and looking at ways to improve my card making aspect of paper-crafting. I also began to look more, in earnest for other stamps not for jewelry, but for cards and possibly other bigger works with resin. My collection of stamps isn't really that extensive... yet. But it is dominated by KKS *laugh*


Because I am still doing a lot of experimenting and I really shouldn't be spending as much as I do on being crafting, a lot of the paper and cardstock I use for now is Recollections 60 lb Value Pack cardstock and other paper and cardstock from Michaels as well. I have started obtaining supplies of other papers and cardstock, but when I just want to experiment with a technique or play around with a new die or stamp, Recolllections is first at hand. Admittedly, I do also use it for finished items, too, and have obtained more of it on sale. I've actually gotten enough paper now, of various types, that I have had to start organising it *laugh*. I'm keeping the paper well labeled but it is still a visual thing for me. I am learning the benefits and limitations of each paper type. I have also started to hoarde cardstock pads, ooing and awing over various papers. I still look for what will fit into smaller projects, like jewelry, but the bigger patterns are attracting my eye, too. So many appeal to my magpie soul! The 6x6" pads from BoBunny, Kaisercraft, Graphics 45, and others have such incredibly vibrant patters that spark creativity.


I will admit this is one that had me a little stumped at the beginning. What was going to give me best results without breaking my budget. For convenience sake, I tried some from Michaels, their least expensive and.. well.. not horrible but not really good. Then I kept hearing about Tombow. Ahh, says I, give it a try, says I. And now hooked I am. I love the runners and the liquid mono is great. Very handy. I've also gotten Glossy Accents and Multi-Media Matte from Ranger and am lovin' them, too. I got some Recollection 'dimensionals' but I not really liking them though they work okay. I'll get something different when I've used them up though I picked up foam mounting tape and am lovein' it bunches. it can be cut into smaller pieces though isn't as high a profile as most dimensionals. In a Maker's Kit from Spellbinders, there were some clear, very very sticky dots. I'm not sure what brand they are but they're really nice for a clear dimensional. I'll have to find more when I run out. I also have various Mod Podge glues as well but more for sealing paper for my resin-ating than for papercrafting, except where the two collide. My world is going to be well stuck where it needs to be.


I finally got my first sets of Distress Ink minis along with a tin and blenders. Oh YUM! I also have a few colours of ColourBox pigment dyes, tuxedo black Momento, jet black StazOn, and a few Studio dye inks from Michaels that I bought some time ago. Before getting the blenders I was using make-up sponges which do work somewhat but the blenders are even better. I got 3 packs of 4 mini Distress Ink, #1-3, and a 'kit' of the blenders, extra pads, and one tin. The tin conveniently fits 12 minis. If I can budget to get 3 packs of 4 and a tin every month, I'll have the full range of colours in 4 more months. After trying out the first dozen, I am hooked and want the rest. The colours are amazing and blend beautifully. I've started playing with them with the other inks I have, too. Really cool interactions.

Paint, Pencils, and Pens

I've done a lot of different kinds of painting over the years gravitating toward those paint mediums which are water-based but mostly opaque. A couple decades ago I did Medieval-style Illumination with gauche and some acrylic as well as painting figureens with acrylic. I've also done a tiny bit with oils don't really like that medium (my sweetie has started oil painting and is a major fan of Bob Ross). Before diving into papercrafting, I had been flirting with the idea of starting up water-based painting again. I have supplies from years past which are still usable as well as adding new ones. I have watercolour pencils I bought when I lived in Germany in the late 80s as well as PrismaColor pencils from a decade or two ago. Adding to this is my latest big purchase, a set of Chameleon alcohol pens. I'm still learning how to work with them but oh I love them already. So, why didn't I get Copics? Frankly, price. I want, crave, desire Copic pens but they're rather too expensive right now. If I were to find an absolutely terriffic deal on some, I will likely add them to my collection. They will work -with- all of the other things I have, including the Chameleons. It wasn't an either/or descision but a now and later with the later not replacing the now. I also want Distress pens and Distress Crayons to add into the mix and expand my options for each project.

Heat Embossing

I got a Recollections heat tool from Micheals a couple years ago for resin work (helps get rid of bubbles) and it works adequately. My sweetie has even used it with heat shrink tubing on wires. But, I am coveting a much better one now that I have been working with embossing powders. Because the Micheals one works decently, I'll have to wait on getting the better one. For embossing ink, I initially got a Martha Stewart embossing pad and discovered it is absolutely rubbish. It's easier and crisper to use the ColorBox pigment inks for embossing than the MS crap. For clear embossing ink I finally got a VersaMark pad and it is excellent, but I still like using the pigment ink, too. Currently I have mostly Recollections embossing powders from Michaels and am liking the results I'm seeing from the few I have, but I'm sure that will expand out to other brands, too, as my budget allows, of course.

All that Glitters

I was already working on a pretty sizable collection of various glitters and other embellishments for resin work. That collection has only grown a little since I started playing with paper for its own crafting. I have looked to adding more glittery things which I hadn't thought all that applicable to resin use on their own or whose effects can be achieved in other ways with resin, such as Perfect Pearls, Wink of Stella, and products which make dots or resin like covering on paper. I love the effect of Wink of Stella on stampings.  I just got three Perfect Pearls last weekend and haven't given them a try yet. Foils, though, I already had some which I had been experimenting on with clays. I don't have a laminator so have been following information on how to use them without for papercrafting. I found the leafing I had from years back when I was doing Medieval style Illumination and found ways to incorporate it into resin. Now I'm bringing it into paper, too.


One of the things I am hoping my work in resin will extend to in my papercrafting is a wider variety of embellishments. While I do have a bunch of purchased stuff, most bought with the intent to go into resin, there is a lot I can make myself and intend to. Papercrafting will give me a way, I hope, to use up some of my various 'experiments' (stuff case with resin to explore how various colourants or other such mix for effects). But, embellishments are one place my magpie personality can get me into trou... oooo shiney.

Other Tools

How did I ever manage to live my life without a Fiskars paper trimmer? Really. Slide-snick, paper cut perfectly. So nice. That and my Tim Holtz Tonic Studios scissors, another amazing cutting tool, I would not want to be without either and don't know how I ever did anything without them. I also like my We R Memory Keepers gift box punch board but, after learning more about what I could do with them, I wish I had gotten the 3-2-1 punch board instead. I've got it on my wishlist. The 3-2-1 also makes envelopes as well as boxes and bows, too. I have a bunch of other punches, most of which I got before the BigShot, to cut paper into shapes mostly geometric. All those I got before getting the BigShot were obtained to cut stuff to put into bezels with resin.

I'm probably forgetting other stuff I use. Thank you for joining me on my little journey of discovering this, new to me, medium. Here are some more cards I've done. All are with Kraftin' Kimmie Stamps.

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