Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Crafting Terms

Glossary of Rubber Stamp Terms

Angel Company
"Angel company" is a term common in the rubber stamp industry. This term identifies a company that allows the consumer to use their stamps to create products for resale. Each company has a different policy so it is wise to advise the consumer to contact each stamp manufacturer for information on their respective copyright policies. Common restrictions may include: limiting the amount of hand stamped samples for resale, making sure that products are hand stamped and not electronically reproduced, and restriction from using licensed properties such as Warner Bros™, Suzy Zoo™, and Cynthia Hart™.

Dye Based Ink
A quick drying water based ink. Colors are most vibrant on white, glossy coated papers and card stock. Not recommended for use with embossing powder. Ink fades with time and when exposed to light

Embossing (or Thermal Embossing)
A technique using stamps with embossing or pigment ink, embossing powder and a heat source to create raised images. Stamp image with ink, then sprinkle embossing powder over image. Tap excess powder and reserve for future use. Heat image until powder melts.

Embossing Ink
A slow drying ink used for "thermal embossing". (See "Embossing")

Inking a Stamp
There are several ways to ink a stamp:

  1. Using Felt Ink Pads - Tap stamp firmly onto ink pad until stamp is evenly inked. Raised felt ink pads can also be picked up and patted onto stamp to apply color.
  2. Using Foam Ink Pads - Tap stamp gently onto ink pad until stamp is evenly inked. Raised foam ink pads can also be picked up and patted onto stamp to apply color.
  3. Using Brush markers - Use only waterbased brush tip markers as solvent or alcohol type inks will stain and dry rubber out. Brush markers are used by applying the brush tip marker directly onto the stamp. Multicolor impressions are achieved by using additional colors on various areas of the stamp. Remoisten inks prior to stamping by breathing on inked stamp.
  4. Using Wedge Sponges - Use the flat edge of this sponge to apply inks or paints to the stamp in a patting motion.

Masking
A technique of covering a stamped image to protect it from subsequent applications of color. A method used to create foregrounds and backgrounds.

How to instructions:
  1. Stamp foreground image onto surface first.
  2. Restamp image on Post It Note™
  3. Cut image out
  4. Align cut out image (mask) over foreground image.
  5. Stamp second image overlapping mask.
  6. Remove mask.
  7. Second image "appears" to be in background.

Mirror Image Stamp
A flat rubber stamped used a tool to create a reverse or "mirror" image of a rubber stamp.

How to instructions:
  1. Ink a rubber stamp
  2. Stamp onto "Mirror Image" Stamp
  3. Stamp onto paper
  4. Image will be reversed.
  5. This imprint will be light because it is a second generation print. Image can be touched up with markers if desired.

Pigment Ink
A thick, slow drying ink. Colors are rich and vibrant even on colored papers and cards. Will not dry on glossy coated papers unless embossed.

Stamp Cleaner
Used to clean ink from stamps. Use applicator top to apply cleaner to stamp, then pat stamp dry on paper towels.

Stamping Mat
A durable foam mat used as a work surface for stamping. The mat "gives" slightly allowing the best ink impressions. Particularly useful for oversized stamps.

Stamping Paint
A highly pigmented, acrylic paint specially formulated to be permanent on a variety of surfaces. This paint has a slower drying time than acrylic paint to allow the user to apply different colors to a stamp for multi-color impressions. Fabric must be heat set on reverse side to make permanent.

Wedge Sponge
Used to apply paint to stamps. Load paint or ink onto flat edge of sponge. Pat paint or ink onto surface of stamp. Also used as a tool to sponge color onto a variety of surfaces such as paper, fabric and wood.





How to use and care for Un-mounted Rubber or Clear Polymer stamps

Un-mounted stamps are easy to use, economical and space-saving. Much cheaper than wood-mounted stamps, they take less than a quarter of the storage space. Stamps are usually available in sheet form which you then cut up, although some companies will supply single images.

Stamps are available in two types: traditional rubber (pink, red or grey) or polymer (which is translucent). Close trimming and clear acrylic blocks allow for easy stamp positioning, as you can see through the blocks.

To cut a sheet of stamps apart is easy: all you need is a sharp pair of scissors. I recommend Kai scissors, which have a short blade and large hand section, so cutting is less tiring. It is important to cut straight through the rubber and not undercut (slanting the scissors under the image in a diagonal) as the outline will not be supported if you cut the rubber away underneath. Try to keep the scissors vertical. Ideally, leave a margin of 1-2mm around an image.

If you choose to apply your adhesive or mount before cutting, you may find your scissor blades clog up. If so, apply WD40 or baby wipes to get rid of any excess adhesive.

STAMPING WITH UNMOUNTED STAMPS

Stamp just as you would with wood-mounted stamps. However, if you have chosen to use a glue stick or repositionable adhesive, magnet or Halos, you will not have a cushion as with wood-mounted stamps. You therefore might find that larger images do not stamp as clearly as you would like - especially the photographic style or finely detailed ones.

An easy fix for this is to place a mouse mat UNDERNEATH the card or paper you are stamping onto. You will then find your image stamps perfectly. If using EZ-Mount, you will not need to use a mouse mat, as this has its own cushioning.

STAMP HANDLES & BLOCKS

If you use un-mounted stamps you need something to adhere the images to, so that you can stamp them. There are several methods:

FOAMCORE BOARD

This is a cheap fix (although not that cheap – foam board costs around £5 per sheet) where you will cut out your stamp and glue it to the foam board, which gives you a support for the stamp, and something to hold onto whilst you are stamping.

I have tried this, and found it very unsatisfactory for any but the smallest stamps (with large stamps the foam board bent in the middle) and the images were not sharp or clear. Also, when cleaning, you must be extremely careful not to get the foam board wet.

MAGNETS

You can buy wood handles with magnets attached underneath. You then attach a thin sheet of adhesive magnet to your rubber stamps 9Xyron do a magnetic cartridge, so you can run your stamps through their machine and peel off the lining paper) or else buy special self-adhesive magnets. Attach one to the other, and away you go!

My only proviso is that images can slip - so you have to be careful when stamping, as a smudged image is very irritating. You would also need to use a mouse mat under your work, to compensate for the lack of cushioning.

HALOS™

These are acrylic blocks with grooves cut into them. Inside the grooves are strips of hooked Velcro. You then buy the loop Velcro, which comes in 3ft lengths (about 5 inches wide) which is self-adhesive. Peel back the lining tape, place the stamped image onto this, then cut out. The adhesive is very sticky and clogs up scissors quickly (use WD40 to clean scissors).

The pros: it's easy to peel images on and off.
The cons: this method is expensive, difficult to cut, the fuzzy bits fly around (no good if you have asthma or allergies) and the main point - for me - is that small images slide around on the block.

ACRYLIC BLOCKS

These are my absolute favourite and I highly recommend them! Blocks are available with either straight cut or shaped sides (like the wood-mounted stamps) for easier handling. There is a variety of shapes to fit any stamp, from small and square to long and narrow, and several stamps can be mounted together and stamped out at the same time. I particularly like the oblong mount for arranging alphabet letters on, to stamp out my own headings etc.

A big advantage of acrylic blocks is that you only need to buy the sizes you actually use - and a simple set of 3 sizes (small, medium and large) will probably be enough for most stamping needs.

Clear Polymer stamps need no adhesive - they adhere with static cling.

Rubber stamps can be mounted to an acrylic block by using several methods:

* Glue sticks (simply wash off any built-up glue when you have finished your stamping session).
* Repositionable glue - ie: Stamporium Ultimate Adhesive or Aleene's Tack It Over & Over (just press on and peel off, over and over.)
* EZ-Mount adheres to the block by static cling - just press on and peel off, again and again.

Another use for acrylic blocks, which you may not have thought of - a palette! Scribble on watercolour crayons or watercolour markers, use with a paintbrush - and simply wash under the tap when you are done!

CLEAR POLYMER STAMPS - MOUNTING

These may be sold as individual stamps, but more commonly they will be sold as small sheets. Cut carefully around the images using sharp scissors, then use with an acrylic block.

Acrylic stamps will adhere to acrylic mounts by static cling: no adhesives are necessary. To use, press the stamp onto an acrylic block, ink up, and GO! When you have finished, clean your stamp, peel it off the block and store away (see below). These stamps peel on and off, over and over again.

RUBBER STAMPS - MOUNTING

You have two choices: either cut the stamps into individual images and apply adhesive, or apply your chosen adhesive to the entire sheet THEN cut into individual images.

MAGNETS

If using the Xyron Magnetic cartridge (about 5 inches wide) or magnetic sheets, you may find it easier to cut the stamp sheet down partially, apply to the magnetic sheet, then cut out individual images afterwards.

EZ-MOUNT

EZ-Mount comes in an A4 sheet, as do many sheets of rubber stamps (eg: Non Sequitur) or quarter sheets (eg: Paper Artsy - so why not mount 4 mini sheets at a time?).

EZ-Mount is my personal favourite as a mounting method - built-in cushioning makes stamping a pleasure, and results are as good as with a wood-mounted stamp.

To apply, peel off the liner sheet (self adhesive) and stick to the back of the stamp, then cut out!

I like to stick an entire sheet of stamps to a whole sheet of EZ-Mount, then get the scissors out. If I don't need all the images straight away, I leave them on the mount, store them way and cut out another time.

HALOS

Halos stamp mounts come in lengths of approximately 3 ft, although only about 5 inches wide - so some cutting down of images is advisable before you start. Simply peel the backing sheet off the Velcro and press down onto the rubber, then cut out individual images. Scissors get extremely "gunky" (not to mention all the little "fuzzies" that fly around) so have baby wipes or WD40 standing by. Bear in mind that small images can move around on the block.

GLUE STICK

A good, cheap temporary measure, but not a long-term solution. Use a repositionable glue stick (eg: Pritt Stick) if at all possible - or if you forget to clean your stamps and remove them from the mounts, you may find they have stuck permanently.

Only use a permanent glue stick (any brand) if you are very conscientious about cleaning up (see below).

REPOSITIONABLE GLUE

STAMPORIUM ULTIMATE ADHESIVE (the one I use and recommend) or ALEENE'S TACK IT OVER & OVER (a thick white glue).

Easiest to use if you paint an entire sheet of stamps in one go - much less messy than applying to one image at a time. Allow to dry overnight - then apply to your acrylic blocks, and away you go! Stick on, peel off, stick on, peel off.

STAMPORIUM'S adhesive is wonderful for small images which are fiddly to cut around (I save the EZ-Mount for larger images which need cushioning) and I have used these over and over with no loss of adhesion. I stamped an entire calendar (14 pages including front and back cover) for Crafts Beautiful magazine - using the lettering and numbers over and over again. They still stick as well now as when I first applied the glue - and I haven't had to renew it, either. If using large stamps, use a mouse mat underneath your cardstock to help with cushioning, if you don't have EZ-Mount.

ALEENE'S adhesive is nowhere near as good - but was all you could get a few years ago. Personally, I find it loses adhesion after only a few applications and then needs renewing.

CLEANING UNMOUNTED STAMPS

GLUE STICK

If you have used a glue stick as a temporary adhesive: peel off the stamp, and throw the stamp and mount into your washing up bowl, and clean with a weak solution of washing-up liquid, warm water and a sponge! Dry thoroughly with kitchen roll. Or use any of the methods listed below.

EZ-MOUNT, HALOS, STAMPORIUM ULTIMATE ADHESIVE, ALEENE'S TACK IT OVER & OVER ADHESIVE, MAGNETS

Leave on the acrylic block then use any of these methods:

STAMP-CLEANING MATS are excellent - just wet under the tap. Wiggle the dirty rubber into the fibres and dry off on kitchen towel. These mats can be re-used over and over (rinse under the tap and allow to dry, then re-wet the next session). Cheap, cheerful and lasts for years!

ALCOHOL-FREE BABY WIPES are excellent for cleaning stamps, hands, and also to remove most inks from the handle of the stamp (the acrylic block). Finish by blotting with kitchen towel.

OLD TOOTHBRUSH: Filthy, ink-clogged stamps can be cleaned with an old toothbrush - either dampened with plain water or with a designated stamp cleaner. Rinse off by wiping with damp kitchen roll, a damp flannel or old towel, then dry with kitchen roll.

STAZ-ON CLEANER is perfect for absolutely disgusting ink-clogged stamps. This cleaner will remove virtually any ink build-up. Finish by wiping with damp kitchen roll etc, as above.

FOAMCORE BOARD

Be very careful not to get the foamcore wet, or it will disintegrate. Use damp kitchen roll or an old flannel to wipe ink off the rubber.

POLYMER STAMPS

These peel off the mount - use any of the above methods and blot onto kitchen roll. Polymer stamps can become a little sticky after cleaning: if this happens, simply dust with baby powder.

STORAGE OF UN-MOUNTED STAMPS

Un-mounted stamps are popular as they take up much less space, but should be stored out of the sun (about the only thing that can damage a stamp). They can be stored in a drawer, but these methods are much better (and easier to identify a particular stamp).

GLUESTICK, MAGNETIC or FOAMCORE BOARD

If you prefer to use your stamps without adhesive (using glue stick on the back as a temporary method - see above) storage is very easy. Of course, you will have washed any adhesive off the stamp first!

This method also works for stamps stuck to foam board or with a magnetic backing (again, there is no adhesive on the back of the stamp).

The File Box Method

Stamp the image onto the front of an envelope, and tuck the stamp inside. Store upright in a card file box, and file by category using file cards. These boxes come in many sizes and colours. Is the stamp too big for even the biggest file box? Use giant envelopes, and store flap-side upwards in a ring binder.

ACRYLIC STAMPS & EZ-MOUNT (STATIC CLING)

The back of the stamp will not be sticky, as static cling enables it to adhere to the acrylic blocks.

In a binder

Stick onto the front of transparency sheets (acrylic) with the index sheet behind this, showing through. The index sheet is the illustration of the stamped images, which will come with the stamps when you buy them. This enables you to identify your stamps. Punch holes in the transparency sheets, and store in a ring binder, on a shelf or bookcase.

It is also possible to buy purpose-made stamp storage binders, with transparency sheets already punched for use.

Photo album

Use a photo album (the sort where you peel away the protective sheet). Place the index sheet on the cardboard under the protective sheet, smooth this back down, then place the stamps on the front, over the index sheet so that you can see which stamp is which. Simple - and especially important when trying to identify alphabets and phrases. Store albums on a shelf or in a bookcase.

Don't put too many stamps in each binder, or they will be too heavy to stand up. The aim is to keep the stamps clean and out of the sun.

File them
Use the file box method (see above).

Suspension Files

Suspension file folders (the office type) also work well: the cardboard is pretty rigid and made to take weight! Cut a file in half at the fold, so you have two separate sections of suspension file with metal strips at the top.

Stick the index sheet to the file folder (fasten an acrylic sheet over the top - use brads or eyelets) then press the stamps onto the acrylic. Hang inside a desk drawer or hanging file box.

REPOSITIONABLE ADHESIVE (STAMPORIUM & ALEENE'S)

These stamps have sticky backs, so use the binder, photo album or suspension file methods (above).

HALOS

Buy self-adhesive hook Velcro strips, and stick down one side of a transparency sheet or photo album page, with the index sheet underneath the image (as above). Press the stamp onto the Velcro strip (the stamp has the loop Velcro on the back).

Alternatively: use the File Box method (see above).

Suspension Files for Halos

Suspension file folders (the office type) also work well as they are made to take the weight. Cut a file in half at the fold, so to give two separate sections of suspension file with metal strips at the top.

Stick the index sheet to the file folder (you might like to stick an acrylic sheet over the top, to save wear and tear - use brads or eyelets) then stick strips of self-adhesive hook Velcro above the indexing. Press the stamps onto the Velcro strips and hang in a desk drawer or hanging file box.

Distress Inks By Tim Holtz
Distress Techniques

By Tim Holtz





Distress Inks have been specially formulated to produce an aged look on papers, photos, fibers and more. These inks are not "better" than other inks; they just work completely "different" for the purpose of creating an aged look.

Here are some key points that make Distress Inks different:

STAYS WET LONGER – the Distress Ink formulation allows blending and shading on photos and paper, as well as embossing! Other dye inks dry too fast, especially on photos which would result in lines and marks for direct to paper techniques. Not with Distress Inks!

COLOR WICKS OR SPREADS OUT - these inks will travel across the surface of your paper when spritzed with water; other dyes do not travel as much although they might bleed a little when wet, the Distress Inks actually "wick" or spread out much further creating several tone on tones.

COLOR STABILITY - the colors of the Distress Inks will not break down when wet or heated allowing you to have more color control for the finished look; other "brown colored" dyes will break down when water is added leaving a pink & green hue.

COLOR PALETTE - Well these are unlike ANY other colors of inks you've seen!

*
Antique Linen: the color of aged lace or linens found in the cherished heirlooms of grandmother’s trunk.
*
Tea Dye: the orange hue of saturated tea bags with the results of dying in a tea bath for days.
*
Vintage Photo: this color is captured right out of the photographs from times gone by.
*
Walnut Stain: a rich, dark stain of an old walnut tree perfect to create a dark wash of color
* Fired Brick: the look of charred cinders from an old camp fire
* Weathered Wood: the patina on a dairy barn’s window frame

Tim’s Distress Ink Techniques

TO DISTRESS: I like to use water when I am distressing. I think it gives the papers more of a weathered texture, so here's how I start.

Working on any type of paper (manila, cardstock, or text weight), crumple the paper up - always press in the center of any heavyweight cardstock or manila stock - this will break the surface tension of the paper and allow you to crumple up the paper easier without tearing it.

Next rub the Distress pads over the surface - you can work with several different colors or just one - WALNUT STAIN IS IDEAL FOR THIS.

Then spray the inked surface with water (you will immediately notice the ink "travels" outward when water is applied as these inks are designed to react with water).

Heat the surface to dry - and here's why... Although you don't have to Heat Set these inks for any reason, I like to dry the water using either my Heat Tool or a craft iron. This will allow for more tone control and keep areas dark and others light. Ironing the paper will also give you a much smoother surface to stamp on without compromising the aged finish.

Note: If you allow the surface to air-dry most of your color will end up on the edges only because the paper will bend and buckle when wet, forcing the ink and water to the edges. Notice that these Distress Inks retain their color value even when wet and dried. Other brown dyes will break down in color (sometimes leaving a pink and green hue).

FOR STAMPING: What can I say about the many stamping applications these inks can achieve. Once again the special formulation on these Distress Inks provides a versatile finish on papers yet still allow for "normal" stamping applications. I like to stamp on uncoated (matte) papers and immediately rub the image with a cloth - this will soften or shadow your image WITHOUT smudging any detail, VINTAGE PHOTO, WALNUT STAIN and TEA DYE are wonderful for this one! Another surface is glossy cardstock - keep in mind this is a different type of dye ink so when you stamp on glossy, certain areas of your image will "bead" up, once again providing a Distressed look without you doing a thing (this is probably one of my most favorite looks) - some areas of the image appear "pitted". Brayering on glossy cardstock is also wonderful because you can still manipulate the inks with different tools, brushes, fingers, whatever. Even after the ink is applied you can achieve amazing texture and color shading.

ON PHOTOS: Finally an ink formulated for photos! Whether you’re a scrapbooker or not you can use all types of photos (vintage or new ones) on your cards and pages. Distress Inks work on MOST types of black and white photos - inkjet, laser, toner copies, and regular photos. Always test the type of photo paper and printer first!!!

Tinting Photos:

*
Tint your photos using your choice of Distress Ink colors and the Cut n’ Dry Nibs.
* Drag the nib across the Distress pad to pick up ink and color directly on to your photo using the nib – the inks blend without leaving any lines.
* For larger background areas, tint the photo using a cosmetic make up sponge or craft sponge.
* Tap the foam on to the Distress pad and wipe inks on to your photo. Repeat for desired look.

Distressing Photos:

* To Distress, begin with the lightest colors ANTIQUE LINEN only (direct to photo). Cover the photo in the lighter color. – THIS WILL NOT SMEAR ANY OF THE DISTRESS INKS COLORS YOU TINTED WITH!
*
Blend the photo with a clean piece of foam or cosmetic make up sponge immediately after applying ink.
*
Next, age the edges with VINTAGE PHOTO or WALNUT STAIN by applying the ink with foam or cosmetic make up sponge.

Lavender fields of Norfolk
Lavender fields of Norfolk
One of my favourite things about Norfolk
A ~ Z of crafts

A

Acid - Acids weaken the cellulose in paper, which leads to its break down, causing discolouration & disintegration.

Archival - A non-technical term which suggests that a substance is permanent, durable and chemically stable. There is no guarantee that this is the case. It is safer to look for acid-free and lignin-free products when purchasing scrapbooking components.

Angel policies - The policy that some stamp companies apply to the use of their stamp, and images made from that stamp. Please note that if a stamp comes from an ‘Angel company’ this doesn’t always mean you can use the stamp without restriction.
If you intend to sell a card made from your stamped images, it is best to get permission from the stamp company.
Sometimes Angel policies restrict retail sale of cards or scrapbooks that have been made using their stamp image.

Aribé - These templates allow you to prick a pattern on card, stitch beads in place and create pictures or patterns.

Applique - Paper Applique is when one piece of paper/ card shape is fastened onto another, with glue or stitching.

Aperture - An aperture is an window opening, most typically found in blank cards.

Acetate - A clear 'plastic-looking' sheet that is used for various paper crafts. Some acetate sheets are heat-resistant & printable, others are not, so check before buying if you wish to use it for embossing etc.

Antiquing - To antique something is to make it appear aged, most commonly done using inks.

Acrylic Blocks - Clear blocks used for temporarily holding un-mounted stamps, whilst the image is being stamped.
Stamps can be held on using glue stick glue, then rinsed off after use.

Albums - In scrapbooking, an album is an acid-free & lignin-free book used to hold your scrapbook pages together.

Accent Beads - Accent beads are tiny beads to add depth and dimension to your work, fixed on with glue, also known as bitty beads or micro beads.

Art Stamps - Art stamps are generally those which are pictorial and whose images can be decorated to create a project without further stamps.

A4 - A paper / card size measuring approx. 29.5cm x 21cm

A5 - A paper / card size that is half A4 size, approx. 21cm x 14.75cm

A6 - A paper / card size half of A5, approx. 10.5cm x 14.75cm

Altered - This is taking a normal product such as a book, domino, CD etc, and changing it by adding paint, stamped images, and embellishments etc.

B

Brayer - A small hand roller used to spread ink thinly & evenly, available with different textures for patterned finishes.

Brads / Bradletz - Sometimes known as split pins, these are little shaped pins that have two legs.
The pins are pushed through paper or card & the legs separate at the back to hold the brad in place.
Can be used as a decorative feature or as a practical solution to fasten paper or card together.

Beadazzles - A brand name of embellishments that are a mixture of tiny microbeads and foil discs in various shades, attached with clear-drying glue, or tacky tape. They add depth and dimension to a project.

Buttons - Well we all know what they are, but in paper crafts they can be used as a lovely embellishment &they come in thousands of shapes and colours.

Beadlings - These are little shapes, flowers, animals, people etc that are made from knitting together tiny beads and wire to form the shapes, which can then be used as embellishments on your handmade cards or scrapbooks.

Beads - Come in hundreds of shapes sizes and colours, can be used to create beadlings (see above), jewellery or can be used as embellishments for your craft projects in their own right.

Bows - Again obvious, but look out for ready-made bows in all shapes and sizes to adorn your work.
You can use strips of ribbon to make your own bows for your handmade greeting cards & scrapbook pages.

Braid -Bought in lengths, braid comes in various colours, widths etc & can be attached to your project using craft glue or brads etc.

Bleach - Household bleach, when used carefully, can create beautiful pieces of artwork.

Background Papers - Papers that are used in the background of a papercraft project to add interest and depth.

Bone Folder - A craft tool (usually made from plastic these days) with a tapered edge along its length, used to create crisp creases for folding card and paper.

Blending - Often with inks or chalks, blending is the technique used to mix two colours together.

C

Coluzzle - A template cutting system created by US craft company Provocraft that is easy to learn, easy to use, and gives great results for cutting shapes & apertures.

Chalk - Craft chalks are wonderful materials to add colour and definition to stamped images, die cuts and more, easily blended with cotton wool balls, cotton buds, eye makeup applicators etc.
If you are creating a scrapbook, don't forget to use acid-free chalk.

Cotton Wool – for use with artists’ chalks, it gives a very soft subtle appearance.
Cotton buds can also be used for intricate, detailed work on your handmade cards & scrapbooks.

C/S - Card stock is simply card that you use for papercraft projects, such as handmade cards or scrapbooks.
Card comes in various thicknesses, which usually measured in grams per square metre or g.s.m.

Calligraphy - The art of writing in a beautiful, flowing script style, which is done properly using a selection of specialist calligraphy pens and nibs.

Craft Knife - A basic tool for the craft box, your craft knife should be extremely sharp & the blades need to be changed regularly to ensure clean cuts for a professional finish to your handmade cards.

Cutting Mat - For use with a craft knife, a crafter's cutting mat will protect your surfaces from cut marks.
The self-healing properties of a good quality cutting mat allow them to last a long time, before finally falling apart.

Clay - There are many types of craft clays, which can be used for making embellishments, models etc.
There are many moulds on the market that make it very easy to create intricate embellishments in very little time. Some clays like Fimo have to be baked to harden off, others like Makins clay will air dry. Both are great to work with.

Credit Card - Although not a craft item, old ones can be used as glue spreaders and without new ones, how many of us would really be able to carry on creating our card making masterpieces?!

Crafters Block - This is the time when you find yourself just staring at your craft materials with not a single idea in your head of what to create. It happens to us all & you will get through it by seeking inspiration from magazines, craft books or the Imag-e-nation website, which will provide you with loads of inspiration & information.
Browse through our free online craft projects & card making ideas sections until you get your craft mojo back!
Crafters Block is also a collection of fantastic, themed 12 x 12 craft papers.

Card Blanks - Pre-folded cards ready to decorate and make into greeting cards, invitations etc.

Copper Wire - Comes in all sorts of colours & thicknesses (gauges) and can be bought in sheet form.
Use for threading beads, creating beadlings, or make it into shapes to embellish your craft projects.

Corner Punch- Punches that will shape the corners of your handmade cards or scrapbook pages.
Some of them can be quite ornate, others are simply notched to hold photographs etc.

Card Making - The art of making cards (of course!) which is a highly-skilled & extremely rewarding hobby.
A hand made greeting card can mean so much to its recipient & many people also make a handsome profit from selling their hand made card creations to friends, family & local greeting card stockists

Charms - In paper crafting terms, charms are usually metal or metal-effect and come in thousands of designs.
They are usually attached to your craft projects with wire, thread, eyelets or brads.

Collage - A style which is often 'busy' with lots of mix and match images or materials within one project.

Colour Wheel - A colour wheel is the spectrum bent into a circle and is a useful tool for organizing colours.
The Colour Wheel describes the relationships between colours & it is laid out so that any two primary colours (red, yellow, blue) are separated by the secondary colours (orange, violet, and green).
It is useful for showing complimentary & contrasting colours and can be used for designing colour schemes.

Crop - A crop is a group of people who get together to create memory albums, and have a good gossip with like-minded people. Crops are also a great way to get tuition in various aspects of scrapbooking.

Chocolate - this is an essential piece of any crafters kit, often used to sustain the crafter through long crafting sessions & the posh chocolates sometimes come in nice wrappers that can also be used in your craft box.

C5 -In relation to envelopes, a C5 envelope will fit an A5 greeting card.

C6 -In relation to envelopes, a C6 envelope will fit an A6 greeting card.

Cello bags - These are the clear bags that are used to present your hand made greetings cards for sale, or just to keep them clean until you are ready to use them. Cello bags are also called poly bags.

D

Dauber - A round miniature stamp pad which can be dabbed onto a stamp to apply ink.

Dauber Duo - A dauber applicator with a different colour or shade on each end.

De-acidification - The term for a chemical treatment that neutralises the acidity of paper and lays down an alkaline buffer to counteract further acid attack. This is especially important for products used in scrapbooking to ensure longevity.

De-acidification spray - A spray that neutralises acid in newspaper clippings, certificates and other documents.

Decorative & tole painting - Creative use of paint to decorate items for the home (also known as Folk Art).

Decorative ruler - A ruler with a special shaped edge used in designing scrapbook pages.

Decorative scissors - Scissors with a decorative pattern on the blade which cuts paper to leave a patterned edge.

Découpage - Dating back to the Victorian era, this is the craft of cutting out motifs from paper and gluing them to a surface to create a three dimensional, layered effect. Often finished with layers of varnish to give a smooth finish.

Degradation -The breaking down, or changing of appearance, of materials from their original state. The term is typically used in crafts to refer to paper or photographs yellowing and becoming brittle.

Diamond Glaze - Diamond Glaze is a dimensional adhesive that dries to a clear, glass-like finish. Unlike other clear adhesives, Diamond Glaze is mixable with dye-based inks, watercolours and pearlescent pigments.

Die-cut machines - Tools that punch or cut out shapes by means of a metal form (not dissimilar to a cookie cutter’s technique).

Die-cuts - Shapes and lettering usually cut from paper using die-cutting machines.

Digital scrapbooking - The term used for creating virtual scrapbook ‘pages’ using digital photos and computer software such as Photoshop and Memory Mixer.

Distressing - The process of intentionally creating scratches, dents and ‘wear and tear’ to mimic the characteristics of aged paper, wood etc. Common tools include sandpaper and inks.

Distress Ink - Distress Inks are acid-free, non-toxic, fade-resistant, water-based dye inks. They’re perfect for the vintage, stained and aged effects that crafters apply to their altered projects.

Double-mount - To place a photograph on two background papers.

Dry brushing - Applying chalk or paint to a brush or sponge, and removing most of it by wiping it on a piece of paper or rag before use. This helps prevent the colour bleeding under the edges of a stencil, and chalk from looking too dark.

Dry embossing/Debossing - Making a raised image by pushing paper, card or vellum up through a stencil using a stylus. (Also called blind embossing or relief embossing.)

Dye - A dye is a natural or synthetic substance used to colour something. Dyes are usually used in an aqueous solution, which will work on all porous surfaces. They are most often used to colour materials and fabrics.

Dye-based inks - Water-based, washable inks that are permanent once applied on papers. Dye-based inks stamp well, dry quickly and are suitable for coated papers. However, they fade with time, they dry too quickly for embossing.

E

Embellishment - Anything that will add to, or enhance, your project (e.g. brads, eyelets, fibres, charms).

Emboss - To create a raised design on paper, either by heating embossing powder laid on a stamped image, or by using a stylus to trace through a brass embossing stencil on dry paper.

Embossing gun/Heat gun - A professional heat tool that directs hot air to a precise area, used for heat embossing. The forced heat melts embossing powder, creating a slightly raised surface on the design.

Embossing ink - A glycerine-based ink that is used for embossing. The ink is applied to the desired area (usually by stamping), and then sprinkled with embossing powder, which binds to the ink.

Embossing pens - Pens containing embossing ink which are useful for writing titles, outlining, drawing, spot embossing and fine stencil work.

Embossing powder - Clear or coloured powder which is sprinkled (usually on a stamped image), then heated to create a raised image.

Embroidery - Decorative stitching on fabric.

Enamelled glass - Glass which is decorated with particles of translucent (usually coloured) glass or glass-like material. It fuses to the surface under heat. Multicoloured designs as well as monochrome coatings can be created.

Enamelling - The process of applying vitreous enamel to a metal surface and firing to form a smooth, glossy surface. The most commonly used enamelling metal is copper, although silver, iron, some steels and gold are used for particular purposes.

Enamel paint - There are lots of different types of enamel paint that dry to a hard, usually glossy finish.

Encaustic (wax) painting - A painting technique which combines colour pigment with hot wax and resin. This mixture of materials is applied in its semi-liquid form to a panel or other support as paint, and then fused to the surface with heat (using an iron or similar).

Ephemera - Anything of short-lived usefulness. The term mainly refers to printed matter of passing interest (like ticket stubs, cancelled stamps, vintage postcards), which can be incorporated in layouts, collages, papercrafts, and altered items.

Epoxy - A plastic coating applied to the surface of a sticker, metal accent or other, which may look like enamelling and creates a raised effect.

Etched glass - Glass decorated or otherwise marked by the use of abrasives. In industry, this is achieved by a process of sandblasting over a rubberised template. In home crafts, glass etching can be done using special etching cream and templates.

Eyelet - A small round metal ring (with a hole in the centre) which is used to decorate and fix accents onto projects. Available in many different shapes, colours and sizes. ‘Setting’ an eyelet is simply done by placing through a pre-cut hole and then hammering down the back. (Special tool kits are available for this.)

Eye pins - Straight wires with a small loop on the end. Generally used to string beads.

EZ Mount - A brand of static cling mounting foam used with un-mounted rubber-stamps to help create a better stamped image.

F

Fabric markers - Similar to regular markers, you can use these markers to make designs on fabric.

Fade resistant - A quality of a product that means it is more likely to remain vivid in colour and true to its original pigment.

Faux - Faux is a French word used to describe something which has been made to resemble something else. The original French word means ‘false’, ‘fake’, ‘imitation’ or ‘artificial’.

Felt - Felt is a non-woven cloth that is produced by matting, condensing and pressing fibres. The fibres form the structure of the fabric.

Felt-tip pen - A pen with a dense, shaped fibre point. Ink is drawn from inside the pen by a wick. Felt-tip pens were first used in commercial and graphic arts, but became popular for general writing during the 1970s. They are less popular now, perhaps because the points wear rapidly and the ink is prone to evaporate.

Fibre - A fancy thread used to decorate scrapbook pages and cards.

Filigree - Lace-like ornamental work of fine gold or silver wire.

Fimo - Fimo is a soft modelling material which stays soft and pliable until baked to permanent hardness in a home oven.

Fine & chisel pens - Pens used for lettering. A fine-tip pen measures 0.5mm at the tip and a chisel measures 6.0mm.

Fixative - A fixative makes something permanent. It is sprayed over work to prevent smearing and to help charcoal, graphite, pastels etc adhere to the paper.

Flowers - Flowers made from paper, vellum or fabric are popular embellishments for craft projects.

Foam stamps - Like rubberstamps, but made of foam material. Usually cheaper than rubberstamps, but not as detailed. Available in an assortment of designs, shapes, fonts, etc. Use with acrylic paint or ink.

Focal point - The element of a design, layout or image to which the eye is naturally drawn.

Foils - Metallic coloured foils that can be applied to cards using glue. The result is a shiny raised finish.

Font - The style of a typeface; thousands of different fonts are available in word processing programs, on CDs, and for download on the internet. The creative use of fonts for journaling and titles can enliven and enhance scrapbook pages.

Forum - An online community where you can share ideas and chat. There are loads of craft-related forums you can visit to brush up on your craft knowledge, share your creations, and meet like-minded crafters.

Fringe - A decorative edge or hem.

Fun Flock - Fun Flock is used to add fuzzy spots to your work (ideal for furry animals or fuzzy trees).
Simply glue on, or mix with embossing powder and emboss.

G

Gel Pens - Pens that are filled with a gel ink, often metallic or lustrous, some are scented ( but this fades quickly) can create beautiful effects, and relatively inexpensive. Acid FREE Gel pens can be bough for use in Memory albums.

Glitter - Glitter has come a long way from the good old days, although you can still have large flake clumpy glitter, you can now purchase ultra fine glitter in both opaque and transparent colours. The glitter if used with a clear dry glue can create beautiful and vibrant projects. Although relatively expensive compared to the original glitter, there is no comparison in quality, and will go a long way, as it is so fine.

Glue - These are now hundreds of glues on the market, wet glues such as glue stick, UHU, PVA, etc and also dry glues such as Xyron, Herma, Studio Tac, you can get glues on runners, and glue dots of all shapes and sizes. If creating memory albums you need acid-free adhesives, but other wise have a play around with different types and see which ones you prefer to work with.

Glass paint - A specially formulated paint that is used to simulate stained glass for craft projects.

Glossy card - Card that has been coated to give an extra shine, holographic finish, or other highly polished look. If stamping onto this card you will need an ink such as Brilliance or StazOn.

Glaze - This is a finish given to a project to create a shiny look or to seal a project. Some glazes such a diamond glaze will also act as an adhesive.

Gingham - This is a particular pattern on fabric, card, paper and ribbon etc, a 'country' look that is a pattern made up of tiny squares of white and another colour. Looks great on children's and baby cards.

Gilding - The addition of a metallic finish to give a project a metallic look, gild can be pure metal or faux metal.

Gold leaf - Sheets of very fine pure gold that is stuck on a project to give a luxurious finish.

Gems - Can be real or imitation, and can be used to create jewellery or adorn hand made projects.

Glue Dots - As you'd expect, dots of glue! Glue dots come in various sizes from tiny to large pop up dots for 3D work.

H

Heat Tool - A craft tool that blows out heat in a controlled manner, built specifically for crafting purposes.
For heat embossing, this is the only tool for the job, although you can sometimes use a very high-power hair dryer.

Hole Punch - A punch either used on it's own (if it's mechanical) or with a craft hammer to create holes in your project. You can get hole punches with various sized holes and also with differing shapes.

Heat Embossing - The creation of raised shiny (often metallic) surfaces on your project using embossing powder and a heat tool.

Hammer - A craft hammer is used with other tool to set eyelets.

Handmade Paper - This name encompasses all papers that have that rough handmade look, such as mulberry paper and paper with various inclusions such as flowers etc.

Holographic paper - This is paper that has been coated to give the appearance of depth and 3D, comes in various patterns and colours and in card and paper.

I

Ink pads - Ink pads for craft come in various types, dye based are quick drying, pigment pads are slow drying and are suitable for use with embossing powder. Solvent ink such as stazon will stay put on shiny surfaces as will Brillaince Ink pads. Chalk ink pads are used like normal ink pads but give lovely soft muted effects. There are hundreds of inks on the market and again as you go on, you will fins one to suit you.

Insert - This relates to the paper insert inside a greetings card, can make a well made card look very professional and an average card look more professional.

Iris Folding - A name that is derived from the iris of a camera lens, this craft is all about folding paper in a pattern within an aperture card. looks very effective and much more difficult than it really is.

Inciré - Another cut and fold craft using specially formulated templates and two toned paper.

J

Jewels - Can be precious, semi precious or faux. Used in numerous ways such as jewellery making and other embellishments. Attached using wire, or adhesives.

Jelly Roll pens - These are a trade name for a particular brand of gel pens.

Jute - A Hessian-like material in different colours that can be used in paper crafting.

Judikins - A company name that bring s lot's of our favourite products such as Diamond glaze, stamp cleaners, rubber stamps and more!

K

Keepsake - Is just that i.e. something you keep, lot's of projects are made as keepsakes, and as such need to made with acid/lignin-free materials.

K & Company - Another manufacturer who brings us some stunning scrapbooking materials.

L

Lacé - (pronounced lass-say) A Dutch cutting and folding technique that produces unusual but stunning paper designs.

Lace - Fabric lace can be incorporated into your designs for an elegant look, there also lots of makes of paper lace, and faux lace available to add interest to your projects.

Light box - a small box or platform with a work surface, illuminated from below – useful for embossing and filling in colour, particularly with glass paints.

Layout - Primarily a scrap booking term, this refers to the page design you are working on and the way it is laid out. Also abbreviated to LO.

Lacquer - Usually used to give gloss, most common lacquers are the Sakura crystal lacquers that give a glossy embossed 3D look to a project, and come in clear or coloured.

Laminate - This is encapsulating of a project in a 'plastic' cover, protecting it from deterioration, you can get hot laminators that rely on an electric laminator which melt the laminate to the project and can now get cold laminators that use an adhesive method to adhere the laminate.

Layering - This is where one layer of card or paper is placed ontop of another usually decreasing inside the more layers you have. Also called Matting.

Lignin - Lignin-free refers to paper made with less than 1% lignin, which is most accurately called low-lignin. Papers having a high-lignin content (including papers made using a mechanical pulping process) should not be used for archival applications. Lignin an organic substance that, with cellulose, forms the chief part of woody tissue - it is the bonding element which holds wood fibres together. Its presence causes paper to change colour and become brittle. Paper can be made lignin-free by its removal during the papermaking process which makes paper archival safe.

Le Plumes - Short for Marvy le plumes, these are water based colouring pens of a very high quality. Ideal for rubber stamping projects.

M

Mulberry Paper - Is made from the bark of the mulberry tree. Mulberry paper is a lovely delicate paper that makes nice backing paper. It can be torn to have a lovely raggedy edge.

Magic Motifs - Magic motifs are flat glue dots in various shapes and sizes, you adhere them to your project, and can then stick glitter, foil, micro beads etc to them.

Mirror card - Card that is finished with a highly polished surface that is almost mirror like. If you wish to stamp on Mirror card, you will have to use Stazon, Brilliance or other similar ink due to it's highly polished surface.

Mirri card - A very high quality reflective metallised film laminated to 270 gsm card to optimise mirror quality.

Mosaic - Usually made of small ceramic tiles of various colours put together to form a pattern of picture, this art can be replicated using squares of paper / card. You can also buy tiny mosaic tiles for use on cards and other projects.

Magazine - Sometimes the crafters best friend, and our best defence against crafters block. There is now a huge number of UK, USA and Australian mags on the market each with their own strengths. Great for instant inspiration. Personally I don't go for subscriptions, I like to check out each copy before I buy. Why not ask your local craft shop to hold your copies then send them together, most come out at around the same time, that way you can have which ones you want when you want them.

Metallic thread - Useful as an embellishment, or to fasten items such as tags to your projects.

Metal Embossing - This is where you can emboss / deboss images onto metal craft sheets. These can be done free hand or with basic templates.

Memory Books - Another word for scrapbooks.

Mask - A stamped image on a spare piece of paper that is used in conjunction with that stamp to create layered effects, masked effects.

MM - Making Memories is a top American company that sell scrapbooking and other craft items, Can sometimes be pricey.

Metal embellishments - These encompass, metal charms, eyelets, brads, charms, etc,

Microbeadz - Another trade name for tiny hole-less beads that are stuck onto a project with clear glue or tacky tape.

Möla - Another Scandinavian craft that uses templates to cut layers from different colour paper, the layers are then stuck on top of each other in an interesting pattern.

Magnetic Album - A photo album which uses a special adhesive to hold photographs in place and creates static for the plastic page cover to cling to. These are not suitable for scrapbooking.

Matting - Matting is a technique that allows you to enhance your photos by adding a border around the outside edges. The border is, most often, made from an acid-free paper that looks almost like a frame. Matting is also a non-permanent way of cropping your pictures.

Monochromatic Colour Scheme - Different values (shades) of the same colour.

Marquetry - Decorative patterns formed when thin layers of wood (and sometimes other materials such as paper / card) are inlaid onto a surface, to create a design (Sizzix is great for this)

N

Nailheads - See Brads

Neatly - It goes without saying, but when doing a paper project, neat does matter, always ensure your blades are sharp and take your time, practice makes perfect. When trying a new technique, practice first on cheap copy paper till you get the hang of it, that way your first 'real' attempts will look more professional, and you will save money on wastage.

O

Ornare – A method of embossing and pricking (usually parchment and vellum) to produce intricate designs resembling lace.

Outline stickers – Also known as Peel Offs, they come in various forms: text or picture, gold, silver, black, white, coloured, holographic etc and are a quick and easy way of embellishing or creating a project (esp. cards).

Origami – the ancient art of folding paper into recognisable shapes – fiddly but effective.

P

Peel Offs - Also known as Outline stickers, they come in various forms: text or picture, gold, silver, black, white, coloured, holographic etc and are a quick and easy way of embellishing or creating a project (esp. cards).

Pencils - useful in both normal and coloured varieties for marking and filling in colour.

Pockets - Pockets or pouches can be added to projects, and can contain anything including tags, sentiments or even keepsakes.

Parchment - Originally the skin of a sheep or goat prepared as a material on which to write or paint – now thankfully the effect is imitated, and the result is a lovely soft translucent type paper, ideal for pricking and embossing (parchment craft). Sometimes Parchment are sold as the same thing!!

Paper - One of the essentials: comes in endless colours, thicknesses, finishes, patterns etc – most of us accumulate as many different types as possible. (Needs to be acid / lignin free for scrap booking)

Paper Piecing - Die cuts or punches put together to create an image for your scrapbook page.

Pricking - Pushing a needle or special pricking tool through card or paper (parchment craft) to give a special raised effect (often like lace).

Paint - comes in various guises – acrylic, 3D, metallic, glass, watercolour etc and can be used to create many different effects on many different materials.

Pegs and mini pegs - Can be used to hold items together, to attach items to your project or just as decoration.

Photos - An essential ingredient for scrapbookers, but can also be used very effectively on cards for that personal touch.

PVC (Polyvinyl Chlorides) - Because this substance is harmful to photographs, scrapbookers should avoid it and use products that are composed of polypropylene. (lot's of cheap albums found in high street shops have PVC inserts)

Pressed flowers - Can be used as backgrounds or as the main feature of a card or layout (very effective when laminated!).

Pergamano - A particular card crafting style that utilizes vellum and punches. Normally with Pergamano, you apply colour only to the back side of the vellum. This creates a light and airy effect.

PH Level - Measurement that tells a scrapbooker how acid or alkaline something is. For scrapbooking, you want to use products with a pH level of as near to 7 (neutral) as possible.

PH Testing Pen - A pen used to test the acidity of paper. The pen mark changes colours, depending on the level of acid present

Photo Safe - Acid and lignin free.

Post-Bound Albums - Scrapbooking albums that are held together with metal posts that run through the pages.

Punches - these come in many different types, including corner punches, border punches, long armed punches, paddle punches (used with a hammer and can be placed anywhere on a piece of paper). Useful effects and apertures can be made, and the punched shapes can be re-used on other (or the same) project (also as confetti).

Positioning/planning - An important part of crafting – make sure you plan the elements of your project before you start. Better to get it right before you stick something together with a permanent adhesive.

Paper trimmer - these come in many sizes, and can be rotary, straight blade or guillotine based. As well as being able to cut a straight line accurately, many trimmers now offer the flexibility of being able to cut decorative edges and also scoring and perforating!

Punchinello - otherwise known as sequin waste, this is a lovely, often colourful mesh from which sequins have been punched, great for use as an embellishment or a background, as the sequins holes can be hexagonal as well as round!

Pipe cleaners - Great as embellishments, particularly for young children to work with.

Pom Poms - For decorating children’s’ projects and paper and fibres too.

Pop-up cards - Pop-up effects can be added to any project with carefully folded and positioned card to create stunning effects.
Painting iron - An iron used in Encaustic Art to melt wax in order to paint with it.

Polymer Clay - A modelling compound made primarily of plastic materials that is finished by baking at low temperatures.

Q

Quilling - the art of coiling long thin strips of paper onto a quilling tool (originally a quill) to create amazing 3D pictures. Often used for flowers, this technique can be used to make virtually any picture you can think of.

QuicKutz - brand name of a handheld die-cutting machine, with it’s own extensive range of wafer thin dies.

R

Ribbons - Ribbons, both wide and narrow can be used to decorate and embellish your craft project (see also weaving)

Rubber stamps - These come in a variety of shapes, sizes, qualities, pictures, words, backgrounds and themes, and can be mounted on foam, foam and wood (most common), straight onto an acrylic block or un-mounted (see separate thread on rubber stamping for more details).

Red-Eye Pen - Used to take red-eye out of photographs.

Ruler - You will undoubtedly need a ruler for measuring on your project (a clear plastic ruler would be ideal for this), but a sturdy metal ruler will prove essential for use with a craft knife for accurate cutting.

Roller Stamps - Stamps mounted on a wheel. Some have interchangeable pattern wheels, and others self inking.

Rub-ons - a cross between a sticker and a transfer, rub-ons are positioned and then rubbed firmly to transfer the image onto your project. They come in a variety of colours and types (both pictorial and text/words). Excellent if your handwriting is not up to calligraphy standard (whose is?)

Repositionable glue - this can be spray glue, glue dots or a glue pen, which initially has a temporary bond, enable you to position your work accurately before the bond becomes permanent. Is often useful for holding a template in position whilst cutting around it. (Repo glue dots are good for this)

S

Stamps - See rubber stamps

Serendipity - Use all your scraps of paper up by tearing into tiny pieces and making a collage add the torn pieces on top of double sided sheet then sprinkle your embossing powder over the design this will find the bits of dbl sided sheet the the pieces of paper have not covered, heat emboss the powder and your design will come alive, peel off the backing to add to a card or scrapbook

Stamping - A technique of using hand-made or commercial metal stamps to make impressions on damp leather, lends itself to simple primitive designs and all-over geometric patterns. The skill lies in the exact alignment of the impressions and the use of a constant striking force.

Scissors - straight-edged, decorative edged, corner edging scissors, fine nosed, non-stick - you may need all of these, but you will certainly need at least one!

Scrap lift - To use an idea for part or whole of a page layout you’ve seen someone else use.

Scoring - the process of putting creases in card & paper to facilitate neat folds, often using a bone folder or a round-ended embossing tool.

Secondary Colours - Colours created by blending primary colours. Orange, green and violet are the secondary colours created b mixing a combination of red, yellow and blue. (see colour wheel)

Shaker Box - A new trend (similar to a snow globe but without the water.) Use a die-cut and a piece cut out from a sheet protector. Seal in bits of confetti or small beads etc.

Scoring board - See card creaser

Self adhesive - Many products can be bought which already have adhesive on one side for ease of use – such as foam sheets and acetate.

Sponging - The transfer of ink to paper using a small sponge (usually a cosmetic or craft sponge) in place of a brush. The ink is applied to the sponge and then the sponge is dabbed/tapped lightly onto a piece of paper leaving a series of small dots. A sponge with many holes, squeezed tightly while sponging, will produce a beautiful lacy effect.

Serviettes - Can be used by separating the layers of the serviette and using only the printed top layer on your project.

Sewing/stitching - A great way of attaching items together, and also gives a lovely decorative effect (can be used solely for decorative purposes too).

Stylus - A wood/plastic/metal tool (in the shape of a stick) with blunt, rounded ends used to deboss paper (also known as a burnisher or a dry embossing tool).

Shrink plastic - A special plastic sheet which shrinks to approx 45% of its original size when baked in an oven or heated directly with a heat gun (embossing gun). Can be stamped onto, coloured and cut before shrinking – handy for embellishments, jewellery and even pet name tags!

Stencils/stencilling - Stencils can be used to emboss or to apply colour through. Stencils are often used with the stippling technique.

Stickers - A quick easy and effective way of decorating your project: there are many stickers which are now acid and lignin free especially for archiving.

Set square - Useful for accurate positioning and aligning of work on a page or card.

Stand-outs (or 3D embellishments) - Do just what they say. They are often self adhesive for ease of application and give a wonderful 3D effect.

Stipple/stippling - Using a short bristled brush (stippling brush) this is the art of applying small amounts of paint or ink in short strokes or dots.

Spirelli - Developed in Holland, Spirelli is the art of winding thread around shaped templates to give you a very different look to your project (the effect on a round template is similar to that from a spirograph).

Sizzix - Brand name of a personal die-cutting machine originating from the USA. There is also a wide range of dies (both original and wafer thin), and specially designed embossing folders. Effective cutting many different materials, and they have recently launched a smaller version.

Scraplifting - the term for copying ideas for layouts in scrapbooking. N.B. credit to the original idea/creator should always be noted if showing the work in public.

Sequins - Used as embellishments, or in making jewellery for that extra bit of glitz.

T

Tags - Tags are an increasingly popular way of decorating cards and scrapbooking alike. Use multi-layered, different sized tags and beautiful fibres and ribbons – anything goes!

Templates (Layering templates) - Graduated shaped templates are available to help with matting and layering to save measuring.
* Cardmaking templates - help to cut your cards into unusual shapes (e.g. bottle, shirt, boot, handbag etc), available to buy, or design your own!
* Cutting templates - for use with craft knives or specially designed cutting tools (e.g. Fiskars shape cutter).
Use them to create your own ‘non-die cut shapes’ and aperture cards.

Tearing/torn paper - Tearing paper to use on projects is increasingly popular. Tear towards you to expose the inside colour of the paper/card (often a white edge), or away from you to a cleaner look.

Tracing - The simple traditional way of transferring images from one place to another. Tracing paper can also be used as a ‘paper’ on your project.

Teabag folding - Another craft which has been transferred from Holland where the envelopes from fruit teas were folded and used to create cards. Allegedly, the inventor, whilst staying in a hotel, needed to quickly make a greetings card, and use a floral wrapper from the fruit tea in the hotel room. Books are available and also specially printed papers.

Talc/talcum powder - Dust a little talcum powder to remove static from surfaces of your card or paper when using embossing powder or fine glitter. You can also use a ready made 'anti static bag'

Triple embossing - Several layers of embossing powder are heated one on top of another, and then a rubber stamp is pressed into the surface to leave a ‘debossed’ image. This is sometimes referred to as ultra thick embossing or deep embossing.

Threading - Not just for jewellery, but you can thread all kids of beads and buttons to make unusual and unique embellishments.

Tweezers - Very handy when using peel offs and stickers, as well as for handling small fiddly and delicate embellishments.

Topper - A topper is a ready made ( or hand made) embellishment for a greetings card. Often already layered and matted onto card, they can be placed directly onto a card blank and used immediately, or added to as required for your own project.

U

Un-mounted stamps - Often cheaper and easier to store than traditional wood mounted stamps, they can be temporarily mounted onto a clear plastic block (or a tape or CD case!) using a glue stick, and this way you can see through the mount to position the stamp more accurately.

UTEE - Ultra thick embossing powder, used for deep or triple embossing.

V

Vellum - Special translucent paper which can be plain or patterned, and available in a huge range of colours shades and finishes, often used for embossing as it turns white when scored. Also used for tearing, printing and layering, it is easily attached to the project with eyelets, brads, stitching or stickers/peel offs as glue has a tendency to be visible through the vellum – however, special vellum tape is now available, and spray adhesives also work well. If printing on vellum with a PC printer, it's often advisable to use the draft setting as it puts less ink on the vellum and helps it to dry.

W

Watercolour pencils - Can be used as normal colouring pencils, and can also be blended with water and a brush to give a watercolour paint effect. You can also use a wet paintbrush directly onto the point of the pencil to transfer colour.

Weaving - Weave ribbons, fibres or strips of paper for a wonderful effect – the finished product can even be die cut or cut to size. Very effective as a background paper.

Workshop - A class usually held at a craft store either in real life or online and taught by an expert. Participants will gain knowledge in one particular craft, or several different techniques.

Wax - Used in Encaustic art to create paintings from melted wax.

Wire - Use wire for threading beads, jewellery, embellishments (wire hearts look great) and even write words with it!

Wool - See fibres

X

Xyron - Brand name of adhesive machines and applicators - use then to make your own stickers, or apply adhesive to awkward or intricate shapes. Also hand help to apply glue in strips or blocks.

Y

Yarn - See fibres

Z

Zig - A brand of water-based marker

Zig Glue - A brand of glue pens that come in several different applicator sizes.

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