Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Paper Cutting Technique & Tips for Decoupage & Photographs

I was a co-teacher for a yearbook class to homeschooled teenagers for a couple of years. (JC Penny's Lifetouch) The below was from a technique hand-out I gave the students . . .
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Professional stainless steel cuticle scissors with curved blades
Small, straight-bladed, sharp-pointed scissors (embroidery)

"What's worth doing at all is worth doing well."

If you are right-handed, use your right hand only for holding the scissors and opening the cutting blades of the scissors. (Left-handed persons reverse the process).

Scissors are held with the thumb and third (middle) finger in a relaxed manner with curved blade (cuticle scissors) pointing to the right and away from the edge being cut rather than toward the cut out. This will give you more control over your cutting.

Use your left hand (if you are right-handed & visa versa, opposite hand) to feed the paper into the scissors and to guide your paper so that the scissors are cutting just on the line you want. Feed the paper being cut into the scissors, with scissors opening and closing in a steady rhythm, but remaining essentially in the same position. Keep your paper well back into the scissors and use the tip ends of the blades only to cut into a corner before you turn the paper with your left hand.

Holding scissors at a slight angle to bevel the edge so that the top surface is longer (thumb turned to the right slightly & bottom blade to the left under the paper) eliminates the white line that one finds around a cutting and produces a softer result. Cut with the middle of the blade in small slices in an even rhythm rather than with big cuts.

The purpose of cutting in this way is to give you what is called a "feathered" look.  After cutting out a print (or photograph), turn it over and carefully examine the reverse side. You will see that the edges turn it toward the back of the print. This enables you to glue down your prints more firmly. If the edges turn up toward the side with the design, the job of gluing down is made harder.

Cut as close to the design as possible. You must get the little places in between stems and so forth. Cut from the inside towards the outer edges rather than the reverse. This way while you are cutting out all the little hard to get at places you will have the outer edge of the print to hold onto.

When you cut away interior and small spaces of a design, you cut underneath the paper with the scissors, so, prick the middle of the space on top with the point of your scissors  to provide an opening for your scissors to find on the underside of the piece.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Paper Ephemera List

I found a Mary Engelbreit book on collections at a thrift store and after my article on FREE Address labels, I got to thinking about all the paper ephemera I could use on my cards and in my scrapbooks. So here’s a list of such to remind me of what I could use. This is minus the paper that might have historical significance in the future, such as ledger notebooks, old letters, and the like. (I watch “Antiques Roadshow” and “History Detectives” on my local PBS station!) If I was to going to use old letters, recipes and the like on cards, I would photocopy the original, then insert the historical document in protective acid-free plastic sleeves and keep in a heritage scrapbook.

alphabet stencils or stamped alphabet tags; bookmarks; bookplates; brochures; button cards; bumper stickers; calendar prints; can labels; candy and gum wrappers; catalog illustrations; clothing labels; comic books/newspaper comics; crepe paper; cupcake picks; doodles/scribbles; drugstore medicine warning sheets; file folders; folded origami items; food labels & stickers; game papers; gift labels; gift wrap; gold lining in envies/gift boxes; honeycomb tissue fold-outs; incomplete decks of playing cards; index cards; library card pockets; library cards; magazine fonts; magazine illustrations; magazine pull-outs; milk bottle top circles; monopoly money; National Geographic magazine illustrations; old grocery lists; packaging chipboard; paint chip sample cards; paperback book pages; paper cording; paper fans; paper doilies; paper lace; paper napkins; paper ribbon; paper sacks; paper tablecloths; photocopies; photo corners; poetry; pogs; postage stamps; postmarks; quotes; rolodex cards; register paper rolls; reproductions of vintage ephemera; ribbon spool labels; saint cards; scripture cards; single-size sample packets; security envelope patterns; seed packets; sewing notion labels; sewing pattern envies; sewing pattern tissue; soap box labels; stampies (extra stamped images); sticky notes; store receipts; tags; teabag envelopes; teabag labels; telephone message pads; tickets; tissue paper; tracing paper; used greeting cards; used, dyed dryer sheets; used notebook paper; vintage paper clock/watch faces; and wallpaper/borders

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Two-Way Street

“another generation grew up, who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel. . .They provoked the Lord to anger because they forsook him. . .” ~ Judges 2:10b, 12c

I got angry several times this week because certain persons in my world talked about me behind my back instead of talking to me about a problem. As I processed my anger, I realized why I was so mad. I was feeling devalued.
Used to, I would fly off in a tantrum and have a pity party for one. But because of the admonition in the word about not sinning in my anger (Eph. 4:26;31-32), I knew I must forgive (Mt. 6:14; Col. 3:13) and continue on. The above scripture came to mind. My Daddy Lord got angry too! Somebody failed to communicate! And He was disregarded by ignorant Israelites bent on worshipping other gods.
Communication is two way. I throw the ball in their court, they throw the ball back into my court. At this point, I can continue the conversation or stop. Last month’s devotion was a gentle reminder of my own failure to communicate with my students. I stopped throwing the ball too soon, in fact, I failed to throw the ball at all.

Prayer: Father forgive me. Give me the grace to forgive both myself and others when we fail to communicate with each other. Thank you, Lord, for loving me and not condemning me for my past failures. In Jesus name, Amen!

Today’s Quote:
"While it is hoped that the members of a parish are important in one another's lives, that kind of relationship doesn't happen automatically. Church members must make an effort to strengthen the ties between them." ~ Sue Banker.