Tutorial: How to Emboss Without a Machine!

Day 2, broken coffee maker. Nuff said. I did manage to hot-wire a cup by pouring boiling water over grinds in a filter again and it is nice to know that during a zombie apocalypse I will still be able to make a decent cup of coffee, because hey, without the caffeine my brain wouldn’t even be fit for a zombie. I am a regular pioneer woman! Speaking of making do without a machine I am going to show you how to emboss paper without a die-cutting or embossing machine. It will be a good skill to have when the zombie apocalypse happens…or if you just don’t want to shell out the money for another expensive craft gadget. Here is a card I made with paper I embossed by hand:

 

So by now the 90% of you who have die-cutting machine are thinking “see you later, I’ll just use my machine thanks!” But wait, if you are embossing old-school you can emboss paper larger that what will fit in your machine, like, um, say a scrapbook page. Grab a cup of coffee (If you are lucky enough to have one) and check out my video tutorial…if I seem mellow today…it would be due to lack of caffeine :)

Easy huh? If you have any questions leave a comment and I will answer them. I’m off to fix my coffeemaker, apparently the ‘leaving it alone and hope it straightens itself out’ method  is not working. Til next time happy crafting!

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25 Responses

  1. Thanks for a great handy video!

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    • Thank you so much!! I love to make cards but my first passion is sewing (so most of my money goes there) This technique is so affordable.. i will be able to give it a go!!.. Oh and thanx for the heads up that the dollar-tree has cutting matts those will be great when I take my projects on the go :)
      ~ Tree

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  2. I love to watch your videos, this one was full of great ideas too!

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  3. A great make-shift light box is a clear glass baking pan and a string of white Christmas lights….plug the lights in, place under the overturned baking dish and voila…you don’t have to emboss at the window. If you are worried about damaging the wire in the lights due to the weight of the pan and pressure of embossing just place something under the side of the pan resting on the wire to lift it up. You’ll have a slant but that’s not a problem. Easy peasy. Love all your great ideas and inspiration. Plus you are a hoot.

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  4. Love this tutorial. A few months ago my die cutter broke down – the bearings went bad and the rollers wouldn’t turn. So I had to be without it for awhile while I figured out how to fix it. All these methods work, but I missed my machine so I did the frugal thing and fixed it myself.
    Thanks for being a frugal inspiration Lindsay

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  5. Great tutorial :) Quick QU, what is the best way to use the fiskar plates in a cuttlebug? I’ve tried it a few times, and can’t ever get a good result withmy stacks. Thanks!

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    • Hi Amanda,
      I have a big shot so the stack might be a bit diffrent but I place my spacer down, then the tecture plate (it is about the same thickness as a cutting plate) then my cardstock, then a sheet of red rubber gasket materail (you can get it in the plumbing aisle of the harware store, you can probably use a comercial embossing pad too) and then a cutting plate. Note I only use one cutting plate because the texture plate makes up the thickness of the other. If the emboss is not deep enough then add a sheet or two of cardstock between the spacer and the texture plate to shimm it. Good luck!

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  6. Hi, good video, but can you come up with a way to use an embossing machine as a die cutter? I have a sizzix Texture Boutique but can’t afford a die cutter. It seems to me if a die cutter can emboss then an embosser should die cut. Any ideas? If not have you got a frugal way to die cut please?

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    • Vicky, how thick is the slot in the texture botique? I don’t see whay uou couldn’t die-cut with it if you can fit a die and a plate through. Do you have any thin dies to practise with? Can you tell if the rollers are metal or plastic?

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  7. I love the video. I am an embossing junkie too. I love the rolling pin. I wanted to reach through my screen and snag it up, lol. Good luck with the coffee pot. I drink tea but I have spent a couple of 3a.m. mornings at WalMart while my DH was buying a coffee pot when his blew up. You have a lot more patience than he does when it comes to coffee.

    I was reading the comments and I saw Amanda’s question on Fiskar’s CB. I used a Fiskars plate in my CB last night. I hope it’s ok to pipe in. :) The recipe is: A Plate, Fiskars Plate, Cardstock, Embossing Mat, C Plate. I take a damp washcloth and gently rub it across my cardstock before embossing. I use a Sizzix embossing mat for the Fiskars plates because it’s bigger but plumber’s gasket would work.

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  8. Thanks for this video! I have no embosser but recently when our local Michaels was moving to a different building I had a few hauls! I got a set of fiskars embossing plates for $2.50! Thanks for the tutorial and sharing your talents.

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  9. Great video, I love doing the embossing by hand on my light box, but other times I like to get done and use my Cuddlebug. You showed a lot of techniques, which are great to know about.

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  10. WOOOHOO AMAZING I LOVE IT I LOVE IT THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

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  11. Love your videos; thanks for sharing. Hope your coffee pot gets fixed soon!

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  12. I forgot about my light box and brass stencils. Thanks for the reminder and the tips!

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  13. Lovely card, Lindsay!

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  14. Yes, my first response was I have a machine…so why watch…SOOOO glad I did – a wealth of information Lindasy. Thank you!!! Love the bigger leaf page you did – cool!
    Paper Hugs,
    Jan
    PS You might try tea – at least until you get your coffeepot going again. Love that rolling pin!!!

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  15. Really loved the last piece you did, Lindsay, great share, hope the brain will retain – yes still waaay behind in my emails…life happens and always will :D Shaz in Oz.x PS candy over my way :D

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  16. The water relaxes the paper fibers to make embossing a little easier. I have used those brass stencils to emboss with on my Cuddlebug and a rubber mat, but before that, I put the shorter ones through a pasta machine roller between two pieces of foam rubber. I also thought about using the rollers off an antique washing machine too.

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  17. Hello,
    Thanks for the tutorial. I am new to *all* of this, so I am wondering if I can use something other than an embossing folder with the rolling pin technique. Folded wax paper, sandwich baggie…. Any suggestions?

    Thanks!

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    • Hi Sunny, I think yu need the 2 part sandwich that an embossing folder provides if you want to use a rolling pin but you can use any stencil, place paper on top and rib over it with a bone folder, stylus or something smooth and it will give you an embossed paper!

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  18. thank you so much for sharing this.. :)

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  19. […] of the same.  I’ve seen some claims that you can do without the press entirely, but this embossing approach didn’t yield the results I […]

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  20. I’ve found using a ball-point pen that has run out of ink is WAY easier than a ball-tipped stylus. Since the pen tip rolls, there is very little chance of tearing the paper.

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