Using Punches

I seem to have a fair selection of punches, and find some of them are more useful than others.  So I thought I would do a page on some ideas on getting a little more out of your punches.

I find that I can punch most thickness of card with my punches if the design isn't too intricate.  Paper often tears and so can get mixed reults, and thin card gets the most consistent results.  I often turn my punches over so that you can see where to place them.  It is almost impossible to cut something out from a punched shape - always cut the small area first from your card, and then cut around with the larger shape.

  • If your punch gets stuck try tapping it on your desk top, if not a brief spell in the freezer can often fix it.
  • If it keeps getting stuck try cutting into waxed paper or as a last resort WD40 - but you will have to punch it in scrap card for a while to get rid of the residue of grease.
  • To sharpen your punch try cutting into silver foil, or if that doesn't work fine sandpaper.

There are loads more cards here that were made by Jackie (Okey-Dokey) and Joanne (Angelnorth) that I hope will inspire you.

So to start with - it maybe a little obvious - but don't forget to layer up your punches,  They can be different sizes or the same size, or punched in different colours or the same - each will lead to different effects.  So here are a few flowers - just to give you a few ideas.  

You can see how a star punch will give you a nice flower when layered
, so don't just think of it as a star.

This was just made using 2 circle punches, I snipped the top off the larger black circle, added the 'head' and then popped the wings on.

Here I have made a flower using the heart punch, it was a case of sticking four of them together and adding a mini sun for the centre.  I found it easier to glue the two opposites together first. 

The centre could have been a button, brad, glitter or a dew drop.

I did ink the edges slightly


How easy is this - just make these shapes look like buttons by adding some detail.  You could always shade the edges with ink.

This little pram was made using circle punches.  I only have a limited number of circles, and think this may have been better with a large base punch. 

I punched two larger circles in blue, to make the body and the pram.  I also cut them in white so that I could add detail to the 'hood', and a border to the pram.  The handle is cut using the circle punch, I just cut into the remaining card where I had cut some circles making a slither. 

The wheels were two punched in both white and blue.  But I punched a small flower from blue card before punching the circle.  I turned the punch over and lined it up so that the little flower was in the middle.  So when it was mounted onto the white the flower detail shows. 

I found this easier than sticking a flower on after - but it is really up to you.

Or if you are short of inspiration - go for a pile it high idea!  and just add loads of daisies

Here are some completed cards, click for larger image:

  Carolyn Woodruff May 2008