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Author Archive | Peggy Marsh

Vendor Spotlight & Giveaway: Crafter’s Companion (4 of 4)

Reported by Peggy Marsh
This is a review of the model CleverCut Mini 3-in-1 Paper Cutter manufactured by Crafter’s Companion. It’s a paper trimmer that cuts paper in three ways: wavy, straight and skips (perforations).
This very portable tool has a 12″ extendable arm for papers up to 12″ x 12″ that folds away for compact storage and can cut up to three pieces of paper with one pass of the blade.  The blue dial rotates so the user can change from a straight cut to a wave to a skip or perforated look.
The blue dial in the above picture is the blade housing. You can choose the cutting style you wish by pulling up the locking switch and turning the rotary toggle to select one of the three cutting styles. The blade then locks in place by securing the locking switch in position.
Here’s two projects that I made that highlight the wavy effect using that cutting blade. It’s a much easier tool to use than curly-cutting scissors, and a very clever tool to have for paper projects.
And here’s a close-up of how the wavy and perforated cuts look:
The yellow cardstock has the ‘skip’ or perforated cut. All of the others were cut using the wavy blade.
The wavy blade is great for a delicate edging on paper projects. It’s simple to use, and it’s nice to be able to create a wavy edge without pulling out a die and setting up an embossing machine. The blades produce a nice, crisp cut.  The actual blades live in a changeable dial that is housed right on the trimmer, that means you can change from straight to wave to skip without having to switch out the blades!  Each cutting mat has four cutting positions (two on each side) so they can be swapped out when the blade isn’t working properly.
Pros:
  • Ruler measurements are listed in inches as well as centimeters.
  • It’s compact, light-weight and portable – easy to take along to stamping and scrapping events.
  • It’s perfect for both large and small pieces of paper; the arm extends up to 12″x12″
  • Easy to use; full instructions included.

Cons:

  • When one blade wears out the entire blade housing has to be replaced.
  • The base has small rubber skid-proof circles, but they don’t always hold the tool in place on a smooth surface.
  • The numbers on the ruler guide are small and a little hard to read.
Giveaway! 

The kind folks at Crafter’s Companion have provided us with a CleverCut Mini, and some Spray and Sparkle Glitter Spray for one of our lucky readers. Just leave a comment on either of today’s articles, and answer this question:

How helpful would having a trimmer with three blades in one housing be in your craft room?

    Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

    Vendor Spotlight & Giveaway: Martha Stewart Scoring Board (2 of 2)

    Reported by Peggy Marsh

    This tool from Martha Stewart Crafts is really more than a simple scoring board. It’s a terrific gadget to add to your arsenal of tools. And we know how much we love our crafting tools! I’ve wanted to get my hands on this new toy for some time now.

    There is a small panel at the top that houses the boning folder when not in use. Also, adhered inside is a decal with measurements for handmade envelopes and boxes. The instructions are in English, and the owner can substitute labels for Spanish or French instructions, as appropriate.
    The envelope guide stores neatly (upside down) in the bottom of the scoreboard. What a handy tool that is!
    I started out testing the envelope feature using a 8.5 x 8.5″ piece of designer paper to make a 5.5″ x 6″ envelope.

    Simply scored following the directions on the guide…
    and used a tape runner to secure the sides…
    Easy peasy!!
    Then I scored a 1″ x 9″ piece of cardstock at every 1/4″ increment…

    Secured the ends together with a bit of craft glue…

    …to create this pinwheel as a 3-D embellishment for my card.

    And, here’s the card set together.

    How great is that to have a card with matching envelope?

    Pros:
    • Because the Martha Stewart bone folder is slimmer than other bone folders, it goes deeper into the scoring grooves and closer to the top fence of the board. As a result it makes crisper, more pronounced score lines.
    • Very reasonably priced at a retail cost of $19.99 and since it’s available at Michaels, you can use a 40% off coupon.
    • The envelope guide tool is included and neatly stores away when not in use.
    • No additional instructions are needed for making envelopes… it’s VERY simple to use and took less than a minute to create a 5.5″ square card for my project.

    Cons:

    • Because the bone folder is slim, it can cut through some finer papers when scoring.
    • The English measurements for the envelopes and boxes are already attached when you purchase it. It is on the top portion of the housing for the bone folder. The way it is attached makes it almost impossible to read unless you pick up the board and get it to eye level.

    GIVEAWAY
    The kind folks at EK Success Brands will be giving one lucky winner their very own Martha Stewart Scoring Board. To enter, just leave a comment on one of the Vendor Spotlight: Martha Stewart Scoring Board. Answer any one of these questions in the Comments Section right below this article on our website.

    Do you currently own a scoring tool?  What do you love or hate about it?

    One comment per person, per article, please. You have until Sunday, November 21st 6pm CST to enter.

    Disclosure

    Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

    More Quilled Flowers – Cuttlebug by Provo Craft

    With 3-D flowers such a hot ticket in the card-making and paper world, and paper quilling making its way to cards and paper crafts, here’s some fairly new products that I had to investigate. Cuttlebug Quilling Kits!

    There’s three styles that Cuttlebug currently offers that I discovered… daisy, rose/carnation and chrysanthemum (as shown below, left to right).

    Each kits include: 1 quilling pen, 4 cutting dies, 10 floral wires, a laminated instruction sheet and even a flower sample.  For my review, I focused on the daisy kit.

    To make the flowers using this kit, you would need a Cuttlebug, Big Shot, or some other similar embossing machine and embossing plates.
    In the photo below, the blue plate is the cutting plate and petals were cut from the peach paper using this plate.
     Simply stack the different pieces of cut petals…
    Then wind together tightly using the quilling tool. Add a bit of craft glue to the bottom of the quilled flower to secure.
    Cut leaves using the leaf embossing plate and add to the flower.
    These make great embellishments for card-making and paper projects..

    For those of you who are quilling enthusiasts…what a great addition to your craft supplies! For those who haven’t ventured into quilling yet, this is definitely worth trying.

    Pros:

    • Custom make flowers and foliage to match card stock and designer papers to your handmade projects.
    • A fast alternative to making hand-cut pieces to create your own type of flowers.
    • In my opinion, adds more than a silk flower to paper projects.
    • Available at local scrapbook stores. I haven’t seen these in large craft hobby shops yet.

    Cons:

    • Instructions aren’t very clear about the number of strips to cut and use to create the petal portion of the flower.
    • Instructions should explain the need to stagger the petals before rolling.
    • One of the dies is almost the exact size of a piece of cardstock at 8 7/16″ making it hard to fit the paper. You could use a 12″x12″ piece of paper, though.
    • Retails for $24.99 for each set – a little pricey in my opinion.
    • To cut through cardstock, I had to add several cardboard shims to cut through the paper.

    • Must be used in conjunction with an embossing machine.

    Give it a try… it’s a fun tool to work with!