Hi, Thanks for dropping by.

My name is Eileen but to friends in the card making world I'm known as 'ikki'. (which is pronounced I-KEY) From where or how this came about I'm not sure - it just got shorten from my original craft name of Ikemo by various friends along my crafting way! I started crafting whilst recouperating from an accident, and from my first attempts with peeloffs and paint - I was hooked! Now my passion is my BUG! and now BEADING!

In the Cupboard you will find ideas, news, tips and techniques to help you get more from this fab little machine. So come in - join the fun and Cuttle with me!

Friday, 31 December 2010

Altering die shapes

I know it's nice to buy new die shapes, but when seeing C&C's Pick of the Week was 2 sets of 4 new dies called Labels A....to.....H at a cost of over £160, I couldn't help think.....expensive!  AND, where does it stop!    Some of the shapes interested me, but just how many dies do I need?   Will I use them?  HOW often?????  If money is not a problem - great, but what can you do if it is? 

Do you use ALL your dies?   I have to confess that I bought a set of Wonky Squares at least 3 months ago and they are sitting in my overcrowded box unused!  I needed them badly at the time, but did I?!?!?  I think now I did not! 

One of the solutions to buying dies is to look at your dies.....could you alter them?

With some of my dies the answer is "YES"!

Labels Small and Large can be made smaller or larger

Using the Labels 2 die like this.....

                   you have  a different shape

Tracy made a different shape with her Mega Rectangles cutting it like this....
and it turned out like this..

This is rather a nice shape, thanks Tracy.

Labels 4 die can be used this way

I have only change the top of the die, but you could easily change the straight edge by cutting the die again.

This is how I used the new shape
If this post has made you think, you will find my tutorials covering this subject under the labels section "Altering die shapes", and if you have discovered any new shapes that can be made from your dies - I'd love to hear from you so I can feature them in my Followers' Gallery.

Well it's the last day of the year and also my last post showing you round my blog.  I hope you have found something of interest and that the labels section will become a useful aid and a source of inspiration .  I have no problem with you using my ideas, but just ask that you mention the Cupboard when you do, so helping me spread the word of what this great little green bug can do!

Tomorrow I will take a look back at some of my favourite cards of 2010.  Have a Great New Years Eve.

Thursday, 30 December 2010

Making Pop-up card with your Nestabilies

One of my most popular tutorials last year was a pop-up card, and this year I took the concept further and here is what I did......
a different type of pop-op by using three small hearts (or it could be butterflies)  

Another one of my pop-up's

If you would like to see more of these tutorials on making this type of card - you need to visit the label section "Pop-up's"

Sorry to the lateness - I have had problems today with installing a new security system! 

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Using your small dies - Nestabilities, Marianne

My posts this week are  thinking about using the dies and folders you have stashed away.  By thinking out of the box, you will be able to take your stash out of the box and use them!
Take for example the smallest dies that you get in sets......do you ever use them?    If you do great, please share your ideas with me.  If not, here are a few ideas of mine.....

On this card I used the Create a flake 2# die (1# being the smallest) to make aperture card.  The small Christmas tree can be used in the same way.

These leaf and swirl dies from Mariane made nice embellishments

but  the leaf also will also make  interesting border

and with flower dies again from Marianne...another type aperture card
and the cut-outs I used to embellish inside the card

The smallest die in the Nestie Heart set makes what I call charms

the butterfly die does the same job and you can add numbers or initials for whatever occasion

Just a few ideas from some of my favourite cards.

You will find tutorials for all of these cards and more by looking at the Labels Section on the sidebar "Using small dies".

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Ideas for using Border Embossing Folders and Dies

In your Cuttlebug, or any other die cutting/embossing machine, there are two ways of making a border - embossing and die cutting.

Embossed Borders.

You can achieve an embossed border on your artwork with a large or small embossing folder, or a border embossing folder.

Folders are available from many stockists and the main manufacturers are:
Provocraft - Cuttlebug
Creative Expressions
Crafty Concept 4.25" x 5.75"
Docraft -  Textured Fades Embossing Folders emboss  select areas appear perfectly faded and distressed. 
NB: I have not tried Crafty Concept or Docraft folders  - but told they work

How to use border folders successfully:  try this link it will answer all your questions.

If you do not have any border folders, you can still create a border by using a large or small embossing folder and then complete the pattern by scoring a line(s) on your scoreboard.
either top and bottom or centre!  Link for the centre panel

or by using a small folder and embossing the pattern a number of times
You will also find examples of other embossed borders by checking out the sidebar "Embossed Borders Folders" or "Borders".

When you need a simple card for a difficult occasion, borders will help you achieve a stylish look without going over the top!

Border Dies

Spellbinders border dies that match their Pendant Dies are called Borderabilities.  There are also border dies called Pierceabilities.  Both types are sold in packs of 2.  One makes a border by cutting on both sides, the other only cuts on one side  so it can be used for cutting a fancy edge, or an extended border.  The borders can also be embossed using a tan mat.  You will find the sandwich for this in the "Glossary".

 This is a "Spades Borderabilitie" double edged die - cut once 

on this card I cut  the die twice, embossed both, then interchanged the cut out bits - this link will take you to the full tutorial

  This is the other Spades die in the set.   I have used it to create an embossed fold back edge.

This is a Pierceabilitie die, used to edge a card and then embossed and pierced.

Using just the edge
Using the die to make an extended border and fancy edge
Using the die for layering

and lastly a combination of an  border embossing folder and a pierceabilitie border die
This is a Joy Craft border die - useful for embellishing a border!
and another border from Joy Craft coloured with Perfect Pearls

You will find  the tutorials relating to these illustrations by visiting the "Border" sections on the sidebar. I find that the border folders and dies are often purchased, but little used which is a pity because they are soooo useful!  I hope I have given you some inspiration on how you can use them.

Back tomorrow with ....????

Monday, 27 December 2010

How the Cupboard can work for you!

Hi, so pleased you dropped by for the start of my tour round the Cupboard.

I started the Cupboard 23 months ago, the aim was to help owners of the Bug with tips, techniques and inspiration that I had discovered with using my own machine. Since then I have made over 360 posts covering all aspects of die cutting and embossing and I'm still learning!  I only have experience of owning the Bug, but know that all other machines will successfully produce the same result in die cutting and embossing that I use in my tutorials, but you will have to adjust the sandwich you use.  I do not give  instructions for these sandwiches at the moment, because you have the instructions with your own machines, but if you are in difficulty please contact me and I will try to help. 

If you are new to die cutting and embossing and visiting the Cupboard for the first time, you will find at the top of the right hand sidebar a "link" that will take you to the first posts I made that give very detailed instructions on various techniques.  I suggest this to you because as a new owner you may need to gain the basics to enable you to move on!   Also if you're unfamiliar with the terminology/abbreviations that I sometimes use, you need to look on the right hand sidebar at the "Glossary".  This can be a useful tool to all as you can quickly see the Bug sandwiches for various tasks as well as explanations.

Immediately under the glossary you will find a "Link"  to "ikki's Corner" this is my other negected blog on which I post any work not relating to die cutting and embossing.  BUT, you are very welcome to visit.

Moving on you will come to "Labels"  - this is the most useful of sections!  From here you can view all the posts I have made relating to a specific subject, ie Squares, Triple Embossing, Die info and sizes.  If you are looking for ideas using a particular shaped die  - this is the place to visit first as I have recently upgraded each post!

You will also notice on the sidebar various galleries showing examples of my work and that of my followers which if you click on  the picture or arrow and you will be able to view the entries. If you have a card that you would like to put in my FFG, please contact me by leaving a comment under any post - you may not see the comment appear and that is because I receive a lot of spam mail and unfortunately have to okay each post separately.  Bless spammers - don't you love em!  If you would like to become a Follower of the Cupboard - just follow the link it's easy to join us - and I would be delighted to have you on board.

I have started my tour round the Cupboard with how to use the aids on the sidebar as this will be useful to many, tomorrow I will move on to how you can use dies in varous ways and you are invited to add your own views or discoveries.
Thanks for dropping by,  I hope you will find something interest in this post that will help you get the best possible use from the Cupboard archives.  The Cupboard is a comprehensive guide to die cutting and embossing and I want you to find it and use it!

Happy Cuttling,

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Die Cutting Tips and ideas from 2010

Hi  everyone, at this time last year I looked back at the posts in the Cupboard and selected my top 10 tips of 2009.  This year, since there are so many new followers of the Cupboard and also many new owners of die cutting machines (that is if Santa has favoured you!) I have decided to look instead at ways of usings your dies.

So starting tomorrow I will be testing out my new labelling system!   If I've got it right, the Cupboard will be the most comprehensive, easy to follow guides that you will find in blogland. Whatever machine you own; whatever the dies you have - the Cupboard will help and inspire you to use them.

Enjoy your Boxing day and  I hope you'll be able to join me tomorrow.
Happy Cuttling,

Friday, 24 December 2010

Christmas greetings

Home again and just in time to say:

This special wish is truly meant,
although the words are few

Have a very Merry Christmas and a
Happy new Year, too.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Tippy Thursday - using the Cupboard

I promised a few months ago to slowly make my blog more user friendly.  It turned out in the circumstances to be quite a feat!  I knew I'd done a lot of postings, but until I came to trawl through them I  didn't realise just how many there were! 
I still have not managed to update and add all the new dies,  but I have made some progress in so far as I have looked at each tutorial and made some improvements in the way they are labelled.  Now if you use the search facility you can find all the tutorials contained "circles", "squares" etc.,  Or if you look at the labels section on the sidebar you will find more catorgies, such as "love and marriage", butterflies, aperture cards, frames, altering die shapes, etc., but at the moment if you 've not finished your Chrissie cards, I would tip you to look at "Christmas".  There are over 40 tutorials all with some element of embossing or die cutting, many with both.  No point have a Bug and not make it work for you! 

Hope this will help this useful and help you find your round the Cupboard shelves!  I think I can truefully say my Cupboard is well stock!!

Monday, 13 December 2010

Nestabilities - Tree Shaker Card

Today I have used my last years Nestie Christmas Tree dies to make a shaker card.  The design has changed slightly this year - it's more rounded, but it would  do the same job.

You need:
Card 6" x 6"
Nestabilities: Tree die ( largest and the medium )
Fun foam
2 Decorative papers
Decoupage strip foam tape
Small shapes

Cut 4 of the largest tree (2 decorative paper, 1 acetate, 1 fun foam)

With the medium die, cut out the centre from 1 of the decorative papers and Foam.

With double sided tape add acetate to the DP.
  then fix the fun foam to the acetate.
Add strip of decoupage foam tape to back of the fun foam.
Add your shapes in the space created.
Add the last piece of DP to cover the space.

When added to your card......

I think my grandaughter will love this!
You could also use this method to make other shapes. My Dahlia  flower would look good!


Friday, 10 December 2010


These lovely ladies have nominated me for these awards


and Jackie

Although I really appreciate all of these ladies supporting and finding the Cupboard an interesting place to visit, unfortunately due to time restraits  I have to duck out of passing on these awards on. Blogging is an adventure, and visiting other crafters can encourage and inspire you - so why not pop over and visit these ladies, you will not be disappointed and you could make new friends on the way.  

Thursday, 9 December 2010

New Machines - Calibur and Cuttlebug and Joy Trouvaille

Tomorrow, Friday 10th, Create and Craft will be launching their pick of the week and it's the new Calibur from Spellbinders.  I will not be able to watch, which is a pity because I'm unsure of this machine. It looks good, lovely colour - difficult to lose when your craftroom is in a mess, and the plates are A4 size allowing cutting of bigger dies, but (probably because I have a slight problem with my right hand)  I cannot see that it will be easy to hold 3 plates in one hand and turn the handle with the other,  since there is no platform on which to rest the A4 plates.  I will be interested to see how this works.

The news from Provocraft is of a new Bug.   They have done the limited edition colours of Pink and Blue and now they are back to Green, which to me is the best colour for a Bug.  Unfortunately, although they have modernised the style - the aperture size is the same .  I was hoping for a BIG BROTHER BUG! 

I'm tempted with the Joy Trouvaille which is A4 size, unfortunately a plain looking machine, but info I have is that it works well, and with the benefit of storage inside the machine for the plates.  Does anyone owe this machine?

 Thanks for dropping by,

Monday, 6 December 2010

Elusive Images Stamps and Nestabilities - Create-a-flake

Elusive Images recently released their Family Christmas theme stamps. The DT had the opportunity to work with these stamps and you now can view their artwork in the gallery at EI. and Graphicus If you follow the Christmas link it will take you to lots of ideas that will inspire you in your crafting.  Also, you will now find projects in the gallery and this is why today instead of my usual tutorial  if you follow the above links you will find instructions on how to make this card ...... 
 A robin, holly and snowflakes....this was one of those cards that just made itself!  You can well image how chuffed I was to find my work on show in both the EI and Graphicus galleries. 

Thanks for dropping by, hope you are well and keeping warm in this cold spell.  

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Time Off

Hi, just thought I'd let you know that I will not be able to answer any questions or queries for awhile.  I'm taking a break, but I have scheduled several posts starting tomorrow and covering the next two weeks which I hope you will find useful.

News - Clarity Stamps

Posting this news just in case you missed hearing that Barbara Grey has a two hour show on Create and Craft this morning, 11am to 1 pm.  Always a treat to watch - such a talented lady!

Friday, 3 December 2010

On-line Party at Graphicus

Since the weather conditions in Northumbria have made the Graphicus shop close down and unfortunately spoil Glenda's Christmas Open Days, as a treat for visitors to the Graphicus Blog, Glenda is running an on-line party. To start the party off - an early Christmas present - a freebie download offer of 2 super Christmas papers.

Throughout the day, Glenda will be posting to make this a fun day for us, so why not pop over there and join in the activities.   Don't miss a treat!!

Have a great day!