Sunday, August 03, 2008

Big Catch-All Post including Cuttlebug/Sizzix Info

I want to address a few things that have come up in comments and make some observations.

One question had to do with the Double Cuttle and how I get the different colors between the designs of the two folders. I run my cardstock through inside the first folder, usually the busier pattern. I accent that embossing either direct to paper using Cats-eye inkpads or a dauber. I then put that through my second embossing folder. The new image is embossed and the "background" embossing is flattened somewhat, but not lost entirely. I then accent that second, more prominent embossing by inking it in a different color or colors. That's it!

Another comment had to do with Bigz dies and the Cuttlebug. I know there's an renewed interest in Sizzix dies, particularly the bigger dies, because of the recently announced association between Stampin' Up and Sizzix. There's a misconception out there about which Sizzix dies can be used in the Cuttlebug. They ALL can. They all fit through the machine. It's the Sizzix plates that won't fit through the slot of the Cuttlebug. They're too wide. You can put the dies through between the C'bug plates though. Need proof? I took pics, 'cuz why should you believe me over someone else who says that they won't fit, eh? But hey, if you trusted me already, then cool. :-)

Here's my Cuttlebug. The opening is 6" wide.

This is a Bigz die, which measures 5 1/2" by 6". It'll definitely fit through...

even sideways, though it's a tight fit. Hey, you never know when someone might need to put the die through sideways, eh? But it'd work.

This is one of the XL dies. Though according to the Sizzix site info it's 6" wide, it isn't quite, and as you may have seen in some of my other posts, these dies will easily fit through the Cuttlebug. The issue is not having plates long enough to cut these dies in one pass. I showed how the B plates can be used with the scalloped card die without getting a crease where the plate ends. You can cut the XL card dies that use the Movers & Shapers, too.

Here's the horizontal card die with the opening for the Movers & Shapers dies. I'm pointing out the scoring bar in the blurry photo above. Sorry 'bout that.

Put the folded edge of a piece of 4 1/2"by 12" piece of cardstock that's been scored and folded in half next to that scoring bar. You're just going to use this half of the die to cut out your card. Half of the die fits nicely between the B plates.

That's how it looks after you've made the first pass. And now as I look at this, it looks like you could maybe get away with using an 11" length of cardstock.... Nifty!

This is the other end of the die, the side where the metal "floor" holds the magnetic Mover & Shaper in place to cut out windows in your card. This is the end you'll use this time.

Place the open card so that it's aligned inside the cutting blades and over the Mover & Shaper die and run this half of the die through between your B plates. In the photo above I wanted to point out that you'll want to align the card's fold with the edge of the top plate so that it won't leave a noticeable crease in your card as it passes through the machine.

But wait! Even if you don't have one of these card dies, you can still use the Sizzix Movers & Shapers dies. I've posted about this before, but I'd like to repeat myself here since Amy made a comment that reminded me about magnetic paper as a useful tool.

Pictured above are 2 B plates, a sheet of magnetic paper and a Movers & Shapers die. The die tends to slip without metal to grab onto, so to make using this die more foolproof and less frustrating, use a sheet of magnetic paper to help hold it in place. You can see how I've marked mine so that I can place my dies fairly accurately. That's just the outline of an A2 card. The dotted lines help me with placement and making sure the die is straight or centered etc.

This is my sheet of magnetic paper. It doesn't add much thickness to the sandwich at all.

This is that same stack with the card and another cutting plate on top. If you have an extra B plate you can use that. This is one from my Sizzix supplies because I don't have a spare B plate.

This stack worked fine for me, but you may need to shim.

And this is the card with the window cut out--all done with the Cuttlebug.

While we're on the subject of magnetic paper (Thanks so much for the reminder, Amy!), I thought I'd show how I sometimes use this with my Nestabilities dies.

Here you see plate A, plate C, sheet of magnetic paper, card open and face down on top of die with cutting side up, plate B. Again, I have some lines drawn to help me make sure that I can place the die right where I want it. There's just enough pull to the magnet to hold the die in place. I prefer this to using tape to keep things from moving.

Here I've run that stack through the machine.

This is the way the card looks from the front once it's been folded. It's a nice easy way to add a window to a card front.

Sorry about the length of this post and the number of photos. I try to keep things short and not have too many pics to load at once, but so much of this was inter-related that I hated to break things up. Hopefully there was enough useful info up there to make the loading time worthwhile. :-)


  1. great idea for using the bigger dies!

  2. Fabulous tutorial, Jay! You should be teaching somewhere! I loved the idea you shared on the GW board - great stuff:) TFS

  3. Where do you get the magnetic paper?

  4. I have another question - the movers and shapers - if you are using a Cuttlebug, can you skip the whole card #3 (or 4 or...) set and just buy the 4 square window die to work with any card you make?

  5. Mary, I've had the magnetic paper for ages, but I think you can still find it at office supply places. I'd actually bought it by mistake. I'd wanted to print out magnets using my computer printer, but bought magnetic paper instead--this is much flimsier, but perfect for holding dies in place. It's made by Royal Brites and is called Magnetic Paper on the box.

    As far as the Movers & Shapers, yes, you can use those dies--the 4 pane window, single window, heart, flower etc--without the card die. You just need to make your stack the proper thickness for it to cut, and that extra height is very close to the thickness of another B plate--so, two B plates, then the magnetic paper, the die with the cutting side up, card front, another B plate.

    Thanks for stopping by, everyone! Appreciate the comments. :-)

  6. You're SO helpful and informative. Thank you so much for sharing.


  7. so glad to hear that the sizzix dies will actually go thru the c'bug. And to see photos of it too. I have never used large sizzix dies & was worried I would be missing out on something.


  8. Jay you just totally made my day!!

  9. Happy to help! :-) Thanks for coming by.

  10. DId you find out for us if the Basket and Blooms XL die (stampinup) fit into a Cuttlebug, and if so, how ?

  11. Heidi, I don't have any of the Stampin' Up XL dies. I've seen some Stampin' Up blog photos where demos have used them in a Cuttlebug, so they do fit. I would guess that they're the same size as the Sizzix XL Bigz dies, but I don't want to say for sure since I don't have one to check myself. I've found that the measurements on the packaging are not quite accurate and don't reflect the true size of the die. Those fractions of an inch can make a difference in this case.

    But, assuming that they're the same size, you have a couple of options. The first would be to use a pair of B plates placed end to end on the bottom of your sandwich, your die face up, your material to be cut, two more B plates on top of the stack placed end to end to cover the entire cutting surface. This stack will cause your paper or cardstock to be creased as the edges of those B plates on top pass through the machine. You'll have to decide if that's an issue for you with the die that you're using and the way that you'll be embellishing your die cut. I don't like the crease, but then I also have a Big Shot and can easily avoid creasing.

    The second, and in my opinion, the better way (at least until there are XL plates that will fit in the Cuttlebug) is to use the long plates by Sizzix that are used for the border dies. Again, you'd use your two B plates end to end on the bottom, but this time use the two long Sizzix plates side by side on top. This eliminates that creasing that you get when using the B plates. If you'd like to see photos, go to this post:

    I guess for the sake of completeness I should add that if you want to and have have the means to do it, you could get a pair of the Sizzix XL cutting plates and cut or grind about 1/4" off the long edge of each so that they would fit through the opening of the Cuttlebug.

    Hope that helps! :-)

  12. can you use a bigz die that has creases in the cuttlebug? I tried my friend's with 2 b plates and the creases (where you fold) were partially cut through. I really don't want to get another machine.

  13. Hey that bird sizzix die half way show in the photo did you get that to work in the cb and can you give me how to make the sandwich.

  14. Hi alyssasmom, I'm a mom to an Alyssa, too! :-) The Sizzix bird die does work in the C'bug. I put it through between the two B plates with the cutting side facing up.

    And for Meigan, sorry this is late, but if anyone else is wondering, the Premium Crease Pad is what will help prevent those score lines from being cut. You'll have to cut about a 1/4" off one long edge so that it'll fit through the opening of the C'bug, but it's not difficult with a good pair of scissors.

    Hope that helps!

  15. Hi... I came across your blog thru Google!
    I think I'v "surfed" by before but this might
    be the first time I stopped and posted.

    Well, I was delibertating between getting the
    Stampin Up Big Shot or the Cuttlebug. I think
    I'll just get the Cuttlebug. I have a Cricut for
    "die cutting" so I guess I really just need it for
    embossing and those small die cuts that
    emboss too.

    Thank you for the time it took to make up this
    post. It sure helped a lot in my decision.

  16. thankyou so much
    this is so helpful

  17. Hi there! I bopped over from a Split Coast Stampers forum link ... thanks so much for explaining all of this!

    I've wanted to get a couple of the Bigz dies but can't talk myself into a new machine, and couldn't find definitive information on using the Cuttlebug for Bigz.

    You've cleared it up! Thanks again!

  18. Thank you for the detailed info and pics much appreciated.Erna

  19. This post is still being read and found useful - thanks :-)

  20. I just found your post through Pinterest and as Diane said above, this post is still being read and found useful. Thank you so much for sharing this info as I've always wondered if I could use the Movers and Shapers dies in my Cuttlebug.

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.


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