Saturday, June 13, 2009

Recylcing and the Big Shot

I have been experimenting with using recylced materials in my Big Shot.

Did you know that you can use recylced cardboard - such as cereal boxes, kleenex boxes, shoe boxes etc - with your Big Shot to die cut some fun embellishments for cards and scrap pages?

Or even to make board books and covers!

To save you some time afterwards with trimming and sanding - glue your patterned paper on to the piece BEFORE die cutting. Be sure to let it dry completely before cutting so it doesn't muck up your die!

Or paint the piece with acrylic paint before using - again be sure to let it dry completely before cutting into it!

You know all that plastic you get when you buy a new die or pads for your Big Shot or just about anything from COSCO? Well you can cut up the smooth parts of that and run it through to die cut or emboss and make some awesome accent pieces!

I used the Cuttlebug Bird Call embossing folder and the new Sizzix Bigz XL Brackets Album Die to make this one!

If you get your milk in the white plastic jugs don't through the jug away when you're done your milk! Clean it out with some dishsoap and warm water and then cut it into pieces that you can run through your Big Shot.

Looking for some metallic embellishments? Try picking up some metallic poster board from your local craft store - it's cheaper to buy it in this size rather than in the 8 1/2 x 11 size.

Or better yet recylce that metallic packaging inside items you purchase. I got a nice piece from the inside packaging on a pair of earphones I just bought!

This is the new Sizzix Medallions, Frame & Damask A2 embossing folder.

Another option is to make your own metallic paper - take recycled paper bags (the thick ones you get from the grocery store) and paint it with acrylic metallic paint. Let dry and run that through your Big Shot with an embossing folder!

For real metallic embellishments try running a pop/beer can through your Big Shot with a die (cut the tops off and open it flat). Be very careful with this as the edges can be sharp and you may have to sand them before using. Another option is to use your nestabilities to cut the thin metal - the dies curl the edges somewhat so they're not as sharp.

Other items that may be used - meat trays (be sure to wash with dishsoap before using), take out containers, bottlecaps (I haven't tried this one out but apparently it can be done), cork tiles, clothing (yes cut up those old jeans or flannel shirts!), and I'm sure there's more but that's all I can think of for now.

Here's a black velvet plastic packing form that came with a set of cutlery. I'm going to use my Sizzix Key die and make a bunch of keys for Valentine's Day cards.

(the photo doesn't show how velvety it really is!)

If you have any other recycled items that you've die cut or embossed please leave a comment!

I'd love to hear what else you can use or re-use!


  1. :)
    In my world, if something is flat (or even flat-ish), it gets pondered for cardmaking / scrapbooking (or just collecting for a time when it *might* get incorporated into a card or page.) A cereal box rarely leaves the house intact...

    Thanks for the great tips Marie!

  2. goodness! you just opened up a whole other world in my mind! LOL i always feel bad getting rid of that excess plastic. Great ideas!!

  3. Use the inside of chip bags. Just wash with soap and water to remove the grease and you have metalic paper. Also the stamp boxes you get to keep because they were damaged enroute to you - cut off the lid and use that plastic to make acrylic embelishments or mini books. Used bounce sheets can be cut and then died with reinker.

    Thanks Marie you always have great ideas to share

  4. These are some fantastic tips! Thanks for offering some great ideas!

  5. The inside of soya milk containers, you know, the tetra paks-type of thing, has a lovely, shiny, pewter-type finish and embosses really well!