Essential item – the Crafter’s Toothbrush

I just got a fab new  Gina Marie Die today, well two actually and  a few more on the way lol…. but that is a whole nother blog post.  Today I want to introduce you to this one particular die.   Ok, so what has that got to do with Crafter’s Toothbrushes I hear you mumble… and what the hell is a “Crafter’s Toothbrush” anyway!!  something crazy, new and expensive that I just have to add to my craftroom??

Never fear….we shall get there…. be patient grasshoppers.  This is more for the new crafter’s, but may be useful to some seasoned veterans who haven’t already discovered it.

The new die I  got today is this one  “LACEY LATTICE RECTANGLE DIE SET”

gmd_latticeI have to admit I did get a good giggle from the description… not only do I love Gina’s Designs and her prices are fabulous… but she’s honest to a fault lol.

“PLEASE NOTE!  The inner lattice panel is VERY tiny and petite.  That means you could need to shim or use a precision plate and that there will be LOTS of little pieces.  I like to be honest about my products.  It is a beautiful set and cuts great you just need to have knowledge to make it work best with your machine.”

Now we all have those dies that have  the most gorgeous designs,  but take forever to weed out the offcuts…   well you might…. LOL .. NOT ME haha.

I have the almighty Crafters Toothbrush.

Ok enough messing around…   a quickie video to show you all how quick and easy it is to clean up these  gorgeous intricate cuts. My regular Sizzix cutting plates are shall we say a tad worn and as warped as I am….so you wouldn’t really see much, so I skipped right to the clean up.

I ran my new dies through my Big shot on said old and warped plates… no shims needed, using 110lb card stock.  I  popped them  out of the Big Shot, now pay attention… this really helps.. DO NOT pop them out of the dies.  If they pop out anyway.. not a huge deal.. but it’s quicker if you keep them in the dies. Specially if you didn’t get a good, clean all over pressure cut the first time round.

Flip that baby over die side up  and here comes the Crafters Toothbrush … old, new, electronic, Colgate, mickey mouse .. who cares… grab a toothbrush and  brush the back side of your dies…and watch those tiny pieces pop right out.

(no audio needed unless you have a toothbrush fetish ..I recorded this last night while everyone was in bed no voice overs) 

If you have a few reluctant ones…   you can used the  brush in an up and down motion to pop them out.  For those overly reluctant ones that didn’t get enough pressure, I find a quick re-run through my Big Shot will fix that right up… then flip and continue with your tooth brush.

When all of your weeding is done… pop the cut out of the die and there you go.. one clean die cut lacy piece..  nice n easy 🙂

Always keep a toothbrush in your tool  box…. 🙂

New Projects coming over the weekend with the new Gina Marie Designs dies  that just arrived in the mail 🙂

Vellum Window Envelope and Card

I was playing around with my vellum paper and thought…. instead of putting it on the card like I usually do, I would do the vellum window on the envelope instead.  So here it is…very simple card that can be adapted to multiple occasions by varying the sentiment inside… Happy .. Birthday, Anniversary, I met you, to hear the news!, to call you friend.

In case you are wondering how I cut the window on the envelope without going through to the back side…I chopped up one of my old Cricut cutting mats and slid it inside to act as a barrier .. I never throw anything away I can reuse…. and old Cricut mats are great for all sorts of things.



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Lil Inkers Dual Stitch Dies sizing

lilinkers_sizingAs promised… here are the measurements  for anyone who was interested in the Dual Stitch Rectangular Dies from Lil’Inkers.

The dimensions are for inner (I) and outer (O) cuts and are approximate.  Sorry no scientific instruments here.. just a good old fashioned ruler 🙂

Now I have shown the sizing here with double stitched frame cuts, using two of the dies together.  This is not exactly their intended use.. but dual stitched dies are pretty cool and very popular.

For those of you struggling to read the chicken scratch on my photo, here they are listed smallest to largest.

Die 1 – (smallest)  1 9/16 inch x 2 13/16
Die 2 –  2 8/16 x 3 12/16 (O) 1 9/16 x 2 13/16 (I)
Die 3 – 3 7/16 x  4 10/16 (O) 2 8/16 x 3 12/16 (I)
Die 4 – 4 4/16 x 5 8/16th (O) 3 7/16 x  4 10/16 (I)

When used singly..

Die 1 1 9/16 x 2 13/16
Die 2 2 8/16 x 3 12/16
Die 3 3 7/16 x  4 10/16

Die 4 cuts a perfect A2 single stitched border around the whole rectangle
and each of the remaining dies will cut a negative and positive as seen below.


The ability to cut double stitched frames  was a big deciding factor when I chose these particular dies, because they looked like they had that ability and…. sure enough….it works.

ExampleSt Patricks Day Card Project

Scrappers Delight Cupid Card

I kept it super simple with this one… She is mounted on a foam pad. The glitter frame is cut with a Lil’Inkers Dual stitch die and the hearts were just a mini punch from Michaels I borrowed from my toddlers punches.. and the off cuts from a Fiskars border punch.

Cupid was colored with a mix of Chameleon Pens, Zig Memory system writers and brushes, Zig Kurecolor and Ranger Distress pens. The top and bottom of the image sheet was fussy cut so I could drop the frame over to top of the sheet. She is still intact and part of the background… not a total cut out layer.

She’s mounted on a folded 8.5×11 sheet of red card..and sentiment free until needed. She’ll have a matching Envelope with Red Hearts 🙂

Fun Image, enjoyed coloring her. She was a freebie over on the Scrappers Delights Facebook Group page

Latest haul – Gina Marie Dies and extras

My Gina Marie Dies arrived today from Scrapbook Outlet … I picked up 5 sets of single stitch dies.. 2 regular and 3 cross stitch patterns. I also picked up a “Welcome” die for a project and snagged a couple stamps and an embossing folder with a vintage key pattern which is rather cool.

Gina Maries dies are very reasonably priced so I thought I would give this brand a try.  I’d never heard of them till now and I know some of my message board ladies aren’t familiar with these for anyone else who hasn’t seen these…. check them out 🙂

I listed the links below for the dies I got, but there are loads more really cool dies, stamps and folders  to check out.  I will definitely be back for more myself 🙂

Gina Marie X stitch Rectangle Die Set

Gina Marie X stitch Circle Die Set

Gina Marie X stitch Square Die Set

Gina Marie “Welcome” Die

Gina Marie Stitched Circular Die Set 

Gina Marie Stitched Rectangle Die Set

I only had time for a quick test on a couple of these…. the Welcome cuts beautifully and I shall be using that a lot this month for a project.   The stitched dies cut real nice too…. I just didn’t get to do much because….it’s my anniversary today and well… you know how it is… your love of crafting has to take a back seat to the love of your life.. right?   BUT he is back to work tomorrow….so all bets are off hahaha.  Look out for upcoming projects using these and I’ll do a review of sizes dimensions etc soon.

Lil’Inker Designs – Dual Stitched Rectangular Dies

NOTE: for those of you who use digital and physical stamps …I’ll be adding dimensions for the cutouts and panels in another post when I get the rest of the dies I want from here. If you need info. on these rectangular dies before then.. leave a comment below and I’ll get my measuring stick out just for you 🙂

First Impression when I opened the envelope was.. wow .. that’s nice.  I am so used to getting things shoved in a jiffy envelope with an invoice…. it’s nice to have someone go that extra  to make a good first impression.  I almost felt guilty busting it open, even something as simple as some tissue paper and a label makes a nice impression.  So bear that in mind if you are buying these as a gift 🙂 … not that I am hinting at anyone,  because my man doesn’t read my blog *rolleyes

Once you get over the guilty feeling of ruining the cute packaging….inside the package the dies are inside a zip lock style bag and mounted on a magnetic sheet… another nice touch.  I hate wrestling dies off that awful gluey stuff and tape some brands use.

..and of course.. the important part.. the Dies.
This set contains 4 dies.  the largest, which is the A2 die is a single stitch die and then there are 3 nested double dies for that negative positive effect. ( see below for example of what you can do with these dies )

I bought these dies for several reasons… there are cheaper single stitch dies available…and there are double stitch dies available in the same price range.  But so far these are the only ones I have found that have this kind of versatility.

I like the fact I have an A2 sized stitched border. I love the fact that the dual edge giving the negative and positive is a great paper saver.  You get two cuts in one.

But what I really love about these is that if you combine two of the can also make a double stitched frame and depending on which dies you use.. you not only get the double stitched frame, you get the single stitched edge for images and the single stitched  cut out frames.

Now the real biggie for me.. is something I won’t find out till tomorrow when the other dies I bought arrive.  If these will mix and match with the other dies size wise…. I will be in heaven.  The combinations  available will be awesome.  So we shall have to wait and see if the other set has a similar ratio on their dies.

All I can say right now at this point is..I really like these dies. The combinations available with just this set alone are worth every penny.  Regardless of whether or not they  mix and match with my other dies…I will be grabbing a couple more of these sets in various shapes.. square , circular and oval I think were the choices.  And I think I saw some sets of dotted dies too, I have never tried those so would be curious to see the difference.

Ok here is a quick peek at a few combination cuts I made using these dies on some card scraps….just to give you an idea of the possibilities.  You will see these and  more used in some upcoming project be sure to check them out.

Large Single stitch and Large double stitch combo gives you a double stitched  frame and a single stitch to stamp or decorate


Using the largest double die gives you two useable pieces… an inner piece to  place images on and a stitched cutout  for framing pieces.

This would be fab for those of us who like to do vellum windows or shaker cards.


And .. you can always offset  the smaller die in side of a larger die to create a variety of offset cutouts.  Of course, if you also buy the other shapes.. then you have so many more options for cut out frames. Which I am sure you will see soon, because I plan to buy the other shapes lol.

Now ..I also ordered some other dies.. which I am dying to try out with these too… which … if they work the way I hope are going to make these dies even more versatile.

In a nutshell…  would I recommend these dies…. hell yeah.

If you are on a budget like I am and you really want a set of stitched dies….Lil’Inker Designs would be the brand I  would say start with.   They give you the single and double stitched effect and give you the negative and positive stitches.  I can’t think of another set that does this.  I only got the one set this time, because I wasn’t sure that the double stitch effect I had wanted in another set of dies was possible and this is the first time I had seen or heard of  this particular brand.  Now I know it works…I am getting more of these dual stitched dies… no question.