September 13, 2009

Partial Embossing using cuttlebug – a tutorial

I saw this card and wanted to make a card with a similar embossed border. Presently there is no existing die that I could use as it is. So I started scouring the internet to see if anyone had done this. To my dismay none had. However, looking at various other things that people had done with their cuttlebug embossing folders, I got an idea about how I could achieve this look. So I got working and lo and behold! The results were fantastic – I got the look I wanted! Here’s the card I made:


The center image is printed on gold shimmer cardstock and the base is also shimmer cardstock – don’t you simply love it?!?!? I do!!!!

Ok, here’s the tutorial.

What you need:

  • Some cardboard pieces – I cut them out of cereal boxes.
  • cutting knife/blade
  • Die-cut machine and its paraphernalia
  • Embossing folder of your choice


  1. Take 3 pieces of cardboard. The number of pieces will vary depending on the thickness of your cardboard. I’m using cardboard from cereal boxes so that should give you some idea. The size of each piece should be a little bigger than the embossing folder that you’re using. Other than that the dimensions are not so important. In the second photo is a side-by-side comparison of the size of the cardboard piece with the acrylic plate of my big shot.
  2. DSC03729 DSC03730
  3. Draw the outline of a front of an A2 card on one of the pieces. This means draw a rectangle of 4.25 X 5.5 inches on the cardboard such that the longer side of the outline aligns with the longer side of the cardboard. I use a piece of cardstock to draw the outline.
  4. DSC03731 DSC03732
  5. Cut a window in the center of this outline. This is the area that you do NOT want to emboss. Using this window as a guide, cut a window in the other two pieces too.DSC03733
  6. Glue all three pieces together – aligning the windows.DSC03734
  7. Now assemble the sandwich.
  8. DSC03738
    Multipurpose platform, with the cardboard thing we created in the step above, followed by the embossing folder with the cardstock inside.
    Note that the embossing folder is placed such that the cardstock aligns with the outline that we drew in step 2.
    DSC03740 Acrylic plate on the top  
  9. Now roll the sandwich through your die cutting machine.DSC03741
  10. Check the cardstock to see if the embossing was to your liking. I found that the embossing was lighter than I expected. DSC03742
  11. So I added a shim (another cardboard piece – it doesn’t need to have a window or anything). You can also use some cardstock pieces. So my new sandwich is: multipurpose platform, piece of cardboard, the glued cardboards, embossing folder, acrylic plate.DSC03743
  12. Roll it again through the die-cut machine.DSC03744
  13. If you want the frame look on the inner rectangle, just score lines there. I used my scoring blade to do it. If you don’t have one you could use a ball-point pen that’s NOT working.DSC03746 And you’re done!


Lynette said...

Beautiful card - great technique! Thanks so much for you comment on my blog! :)

Bev J. said...

Wonderful. Thanks for figuring this out and providing a tutorial. Plan to try this.

Stamp Muse said...

Thank you so much for the tutorial. I can't wait to try it!

Amanda said...

Thanks for posting this tutorial - I will be trying this out very shortly as it has been sth I have wanted to do... but not got round to thinking about it!!

mj said...

just came across this and what a fantastic idea!! i didn't want to cut my folder so this is perfect! TFS!

bmolavi said...

Thank you so much for this tutorial! I'm thinking on buying a cuttlebug to make my wedding invites, but I don't see any embossing folder that will fit because they cover the whole sheet and I need some plain area for the wording. . .
I was looking into doing my own embossing folder but with this it probably won't be necessary :)

Liz said...

looks easier than the couple others I have seen. Have you ever tried misting your cardstock before embossing it ? I've heard people do that for a deeper impression, but I don't want to ruin what good cardstock I do have. TFS !

Smriti said...

@Liz, I haven't tried misting the cardstock. Just adding an extra shim in the sandwich gave me a deep impression.