Do you have a favorite stamping technique? It’s hard to pick just one, I know! I definitely have multiple favorites but, for me, one of them is paper piecing.
Paper piecing is a simple technique where an image is stamped onto different papers and then cut out and layered together to create a final image. I love paper piecing because it justifies my collection of 6×6 paper pads and it allows me to easily incorporate pretty colors and some of my favorite patterns (think polka dots and stripes) into my cards.
For today’s post, I thought it would be fun to share a few of my paper piecing tricks! The first step to paper piecing is to stamp your image onto paper. I like to use a mix of patterned paper and cardstock so that the end result isn’t overwhelming. Also, I find that stamps that have thick lines work best for this technique. Thick lines are more forgiving when it comes to cutting right through the stamped line. Lastly, make sure you use a dark ink that won’t smudge!
Next up, the fun part of cutting! When it comes to paper piecing, comfortable, precision tip scissors are essential. Hand cramps while cutting are no fun! When I cut my stamped images out, I always do a rough cut first around the image so I’m working with a smaller piece of paper rather than the entire 6×6 piece. When it comes to actually cutting out the stamped image, cut right through the stamped line using long, slow cuts. Start your cut as far into the scissors as you can and turn the paper instead of the scissors!
Since I’m the science type, we’re going to bring math into the equation here. The angle at which the paper is cut is an important one! Instead of holding the scissors at a 90 degree angle to the paper, try cutting at an angle closer to 135 degree angle to the paper.
To show the difference the angle at which the paper is cut makes in the end result, I cut two of these monkeys out. The monkey on the left is at a 90 degree angle and the monkey on the right is at a 135 degree angle. By holding your scissors at the 135 degree angle to the paper, you don’t reveal the paper underneath the ink.
The next step is one I don’t always do, but will depending on how much white is showing beneath the stamped line. If you still have white showing, you can take a marker the same color as your ink and lightly run it around the side of your cut out image. Here I’ve run a black marker around his head and half of the arm. See the difference?
I could have left my little monkey all polka dot but I wanted to give him an accent color on his tummy and face. To not overwhelm the end result with multiple patterns, I used solid cardstock and trimmed it the same way as I did his body. Then, I simply adhere the face and belly to the bottom polka dot layer.
With all of my paper pieced images complete, it’s time to get working on the end result! On the base layer of my card, I stamped my images again, in the same color ink. It’s important to stamp the images on the layer they’ll be adhered so that the stamped lines are a consistent width!
With only a few supplies and a cutting trick or two, the end result is a seamless mix of patterns and papers.
Now that I’ve shared one of my favorite techniques with you, I’d love to hear what your favorite techniques are. Comment below for your chance to win a copy of Stamp It! Techniques, Volume 2, a special issue that focuses on six other stamping techniques! Make sure to leave your comment by 5:00 pm MST on Friday, February 28.
One last thing before you go! Today is also the last Wednesday of the month, and after taking a bit of a break to enjoy the holidays, the Go-to Gals are back with another Go-to Gal Designer Challenge. This month, we’re focusing on Technique Tuesday! Please check out the following blogs for some Technique Tuesday inspiration:
Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing a part of your day with me!