Any hobbyist who is into scrapbooking, card making or any other paper craft should definitely look at investing in a die cut machine. Die cutting machines save oodles of time and you can create the most awesome layouts using them.
What Is A Die Cut Machine?
Die cutting machines are machines that are specially designed to cut materials like paper, metal or fabric into a specific shape.
You can then use these cutouts for your projects, like on a scrapbooking layout, quilts, homemade cards, or even use them to decorate for a party.
There are two types of die cutting machines, namely:
- Manual Die Cutting Machine
- Digital Die Cutting Machine
Manual die cutting machines work almost like a cookie cutter.
You buy the various cutting dies for the machine that cut the different materials. There is a wide range to choose from here, and you can cut anything from a tree to a horse to a windmill.
A digital die cutting machine is a die cut machine that cuts as a printer would work. These die cutting machines use a cartridge, and images are sent to the cutter via a computer where the designs can be made or downloaded using special software.
The fancier digital die cutting machines can draw, pierce, cut and emboss.
To find out more about any of these machines, you can simply click on either of the pictures.
Functions Of Die Cutting Machines
Die cutting machines are designed to do the following (dependant on model and size of machine):
Cutting is the standard feature on most of the machines. Some of these die cutting machines can cut shapes as small as a quarter of an inch.
This is the art of making holes in your medium. This could either be once-off or in a pattern of choice.
This is normally a standard feature on manual die cutting machines.
Embossing is the art of creating raised designs on the paper or card, giving the design a popout effect.
This involves carving or cutting designs on a hard surface, like wood for instance.
On some of the digital die cutting machines, the blade can be replaced with a marker type tool that draws instead of cuts.
Cut By Color
Some of the digital models can trace colors and also then cut around them.
Die Cutting Machine Uses
One can make a variety of items with a die cutting machine. Here are a few ideas:
- Scrapbooking designs
- Felt cutouts
- Stickers and decals
- Homemade cards
- Fabric cutouts
- Fun foam designs
Choosing a Die Cutting Machine
There are several factors to consider when buying a die cutting machine:
- Type of machine – Manual or Digital
- What you need it for
- Ease of use – Software and Support
- Size and Portability
- And of course the cost
Here are a few examples of good die cutting machines that can be purchased online at great prices.
- The Cricut Explore Air 2 is your personal DIY cutting machine. Make custom vinyl stickers, personalized home decor, unique greeting cards, custom-designed apparel, and more.
- Upload your own images for free or choose from Cricut’s vast library of pre-made designs and projects.
- Double tool holder for cutting and writing or cutting and scoring in one easy step.
- Design anywhere. Very Portable. Free access to Cricut’s simple design software, Design Space. Create and design from your computer, tablet or mobile phone using the Cricut Design App for iOS and Android devices.
- Make the perfect cut every time. The smart set dial ensures that your machine cuts at the correct depth and pressure for any type of material.
- Cuts 100+ different types of materials. These include basic and speciality Vinyl, Iron-on Vinyls, Cardstock, Faux Leather, Adhesive Foils, Specialty Paper, Poster Board and more.
- Embedded Bluetooth, for wireless cutting.
- German carbide premium blade.
The one drawback with this machine is that the software is subscription based.
Sizzix Sidekick Starter Kit – White and Gray with Aqua Cutting Plates, Embossing Pad, Embossing Folders, Dies and Stamps – Item 661770
- A portable, affordable and adorable crafting system
- Machine dimensions: 7 3/4x 4 3/4x 3 1/2.
- The starter kit also includes 6 framelits dies, 2 thinlits dies, 2 small textured impressions embossing folders and 7 stamps to get you started crafting right out of the box.
- Features a special vacuum seal that holds it securely in place onto any smooth work surface, which makes it perfect for crafting on the go.
- Perfect for scrapbooking, card making, home decor and party, event and wedding planning.
- Bonus! includes one A2 embossing folder and two metal dies.
- One 6×8 a plate and two 6×8 b plates included.
- One 6×8 rubber embossing mat included. Features a collapsible handle and compact fold-n-store profile.
- Cuts and embosses a variety of materials including tissue paper, foils, acetate ribbon, and thin leather.
- Works with other leading embossing folders and cutting dies.
That is just three of the most populer machines covered. There are many different brands and some great die cut machines to suit all needs and budgets.
Please let me know if you have had any experiences with any die cut machines and if they have been a worthwhile purchase for you.