Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday Focus: Nestabilities Embossing Part II

Last week, the Friday Focus included step by step instructions on cutting and embossing nestabilities using a Cuttlebug.  This week, I am adding a couple more fun ways to emboss and I have a step-by-step picture tutorial on using a Big Shot to cut and emboss nestabilities.

Embossing Metals

Spellbinders (the company that makes Nestabilites) has a line of embossable metals!  They are absolutely lovely.  Besides this pack of precious metals, there is also a pack of jewel tone metals.  Each piece has a silver core, so if you want to get really fancy, you can lightly sand the finished product to get an antiqued look.  (Local ladies: Hobby Lobby carries these!!  Can you say "coupon"?)

The process to cut and emboss these metals is no different than embossing cardstock.  See last week's post for step-by-step instructions using the Cuttlebug.  Keep reading for instructions on the Big Shot.


Impressabilities are Spellbinder's embossing folders (but they aren't folders).  They are very thin metal dies - so thin that you want to be very careful with them or they will break.  They are fairly reasonably priced (at my local Hobby Lobby, they are $6.99 but often go on sale at 40% off).  I tell you this because the official Spellbinders website talks about how easy these are to cut up - they suggest buying two of each, one to keep whole and one to cut up. For example, you can cut a small portion off and use them in a card corner or just as an accent.  I left mine whole as I wanted to do the entire card front.  They are VERY nice in that they do cover the entire card front as compared to your average Cuttlebug folder which only covers a 4 x 5 1/4" piece.

In general, you can follow the embossing part of the instructions that I have provided.  Cuttlebug is here; Big Shot is below.  But you need to do one extra step to get a good impression - spritz your paper with water before embossing.

I use a fine mist spritzer that I
got at a craft store.  You can spritz
fairly heavily - I actually rubbed some
water droplets off when I was done.
You can also wet the front with a
sponge - wait a few minutes to let
the water soak into the fibers.
Then follow the embossing instructions.

Here is the difference.  The left
side was NOT spritzed with water;
the right side was spritzed.

You can also use these impressabilities to accomplish the letter-press look.  Simply ink the impressability with a pigment ink and then emboss as directed!

BIG SHOT Instructions:

My Big Shot is not my go-to machine.  It has nothing to do with quality because IBig Shots are defnitely more sturdy than Cuttlebugs.  But I have a very small corner in which I make cards - the Cuttlebug fits, the Big Shot doesn't.  But I did many questions as to how to accomplish the Nestabilities cutting and embossing with the Big Shot, so here goes...

First, there are a number of options at many of these steps depending on (1) whether you have an older or newer Big Shot and (2) whether you have Spellbinders pads or Sizzix pads.  I have shown the options that I know about - but please remember, I am not a Big Shot expert.  I just know what works for me.


Lay your die face up on
a fully folded together Big
Shot Multipurpose Platform.

If you have an older machine in which
your platform does not have the
tabs, you will need a Wafer-Thin
Die Adaptor.  Then just place your
platform, then the adaptor, THEN
your die facing up.

Place cardstock on top of the die.

Then top with TWO cutting pads.
Roll it through your machine and
you will have a nice die cut.


Remove the top layers but
leave the die and the cut cardstock.

Top with your Spellbinders
tan embossing mat
If you have all Sizzix products, top
with the Sizzix rubber pad.

Top your mat (whether the tan or
black) with a Spellbinders spacer plate
If you have all Sizzix products, top
the mat (whether tan or black)
with a Wafer Thin Die Adapator.
This is a bit of a problem if you have
an older base platform, because then
you need this adaptor on your base
platform (see cutting) AND on top.

Top with one cutting pad
and squish it!

I hope that I have give you some fun ideas - always feel free to ask questions!  As I said, I am definitely NOT a Big Shot expert, but given I have all the parts and all the toys, I can always play until I find the answer!

With Love and Caring:
  • Stamps: Stampin' Up Thanks for Caring
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Soft Suede, Creamy Caramel
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Rose Red, Vanilla, K&Co Life's Journey dsp
  • Accessories: Spellbinders Fancy Tags (They just came out with a Fancy Tags 2 and 3 that are absolutely stunning!  Check it out here).  Stampin' Up Oval Punch (oddly none of the Spellbinders ovals fit inside this tag??), Stampin' Up Artichoke seam binding, Martha Stewart border punch, misc copper brads
  • Challenges: Stampin' Royalty Sketch Challenge

Butterfly Celebrate:
  • Stamps: Papertrey Mat Stack 3, Butterfly Dreams
  • Inks: Papertrey New Leaf, Summer Sunrise, various copics on butterfly
  • Paper: Papertrey New Leaf, Summer Sunrise
  • Accessories: Papertrey Mat Stack 3 die, Butterfly die, Cuttlebug corner die, Spellbinders Impressabilities Flowers, misc gems colored with copics to match New Leaf
  • Challenges: Splitcoast Free4All: Aloha and Technostampers Sketch Challenge


Technostamper is the fun challenge that lets me link to the other participants on their blog.  Then you can see what others have done with the above sketch!


  1. What fun cards. I love your take on my challenge! Love that butterfly. And the first card is really pretty too. Great tutorial too! Thanks so much for playing along with my sketch challenge this week!

  2. This is too funny! I was just trying out a Spellbinders embossing folder and was not impressed with it. The water spritzing is probably the key! THANKS!! :)

  3. Beautiful card and great tutorials. Thanks for joining us at Stampin' Royalty this week.


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