Tuesday, March 22, 2011

CRITIQUE : Featured Design Page

I just put together a "feature design" page to feature more into on my FlipOver planning system (the agendas I've written about on here.) I've gotten to that point where I can't look at it anymore. Will you take a look and let me know what you think? Is it easy enough to understand? Do the links look intact? Does anything look weird on your browser?



Sunday, March 20, 2011

Question: Screen Printing Equipment

Hello! It's been awhile since I posted here on AIM. My question for you is about screenprinting equipment. I no longer have a free press I can use to print my shirts and scarves this year and I'm looking into getting my own setup. Probably just a one-color press. I was looking at something like this online, which seems pretty reasonable. But what about the other equipment needed like flash dryers, etc.? Does anyone know what a reasonable price is for these and where to find it?

I already have burned screens, so I don't think I'll need to get an exposure unit right away. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Cheaper the better :)


Thursday, March 10, 2011

HOW TO : Make Newspaper Nails

I got a nice little email this morning, and I thought I'd share. The blog it links to looks neato too. Thanks Jolene!

Hello! I just discovered your blog recently & I love it.

I have a submission for you. I'm not sure if this is too beauty-related rather than craft-related, but I recently wrote a blog about how to do newspaper fingernails:
Thanks for looking!

Jolene Frances

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

TOOL : Diamond 1 Corner Rounder

I recently bought a heavier duty corner rounder for a few projects I've been working on. I've been using it too much to share it before now.
I'm pleased as punch (no pun intended) with it. It comes with a 1/4" corner rounding die, which is great, but I've just put in an order for a couple of other dies. I'll share them with you when I get them.
It will punch a whole stack of paper/cardstock/etc at a time, which is super handy for rounding the corner on pads or books. The extra scrap falls down a hole at the back, into a trash drawer. There is another drawer at the front for extra dies, and tools.

A couple of drawbacks I've found -
1) The blade really cuts into the blue plastic underneath. The set comes with a few replacements, and I can see I'll need to replace the original pad more quickly than I'd hoped.
2) It's really important to get the paper lined up in the corner just right, so you have to really keep your eye on how you are putting the paper under the blade. There are guides, but for some reason it's easy to slant the paper one way or another.
3) I'm really wishing I had the larger (3/8") die right now. I like the 1/4", but I think I'd like the 3/8" even better.
4) I want to round everything. In fact, I just might.

I bought this guy from Binding101 because they were the cheapest. It's also available from an Amazon dealer. It took about 5 business days to get to me, which was great.

I've tested it on a number of materials, and it works great.
That should about round out this review... (get it?)

I got a few new blades for the cutter- namely a wider diameter rounder, and a 45 degree straight cut (possibly because I was watching BSG at the time.) In total I have 4 blades, from a very small professional curve to a nice big friendly one.

They look like this.
Each bolts on to the cutter with an Ikea style hex key. It's very important to readjust the blue guides after replacing the blade, and from time-to-time while you're using it. (If the blade is too close to the paper, or if it is slightly turned you get a small notch in the side of the curve. Look at the "S" example in the sample picture below. The curve goes into the paper, instead of going straight into the straight side.)
The blade bolts down, and them the blue guides are loosened and adjusted.I cut several scrap pieces of Crane Lettra. It does well, but with a large stack there is a little variation in the shape of the curve from top to bottom. A stack 1/4 inch or smaller works best.
These sheets were cut as a stack.Here are the 4 blades I got; M (45 degree die), S (1/8" die), M (1/4" die comes with the cutter), L (3/8" die).
One thing I forgot to mention, the cutter has a nifty hole and drawer for catching paper scraps (they will still get EVERYWHERE, I've been finding them on the stairs.) The front drawer holds some of the things you need; a couple of blades, the hex keys, etc.

The blade pieces are a bit oily- I would advise wiping them down with a paper towel before hooking them on. The oil has never been on the blade portion, so it doesn't transfer to the paper.

All in all I'm happy- my biggest complaint is the constant adjusting of the blue guides. It's worth it to get rid of those sharp edges (and so much better than craft rounders.)