DIY Die Cuts

Stroll through your local scrapbooking supply shop and you may die from the cuteness featured on all of the elaborate die cuts available.

I am a huge fan of die cuts.  In fact, the adorable embellishments are one of the reasons I got into scrapbooking more than a decade ago.  I love the intricately decorated shapes and the fact that they can be used to spice up more than just a corner of a memory book page.  Die cuts can be displayed on frames, in journaling blocks or strategically placed in page titles.

The problem with die cuts is the price.  The fancy embellishments don’t come cheap.  Fortunately, there are ways you can add the fun shapes to your pages without going broke.  One option is to invest in a die cut machine, such as a Cricut.  The electronic tool requires you to fork over a bit of cash up front, but you can recoup the money by making hundreds of customized DIY die cuts with a simple press of a button.

Another option is to create die cuts with the help of a home computer, printer, and a sharp pair of scissors.  The Internet is teeming with sites that feature free die cut patterns.  Some of my favorite online resources for printable die cuts are ScrapbookScrapbook, Scrapbooking Warehouse and  Once you find the shape you need to decorate your page, all you need to do is download the die cut file on your computer, load some colored scrapbook paper in your printer, and cut-out the shapes.

To jazz up your homemade die cuts use chalk, rubber stamps or stickers.  To give your die cut a vintage look you could use some sand paper or steel wool to rub off some of the color.  Another idea is to add gems, buttons, brads or eyelets to give your die cut a textured look.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.