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  • Help appreciated

    Hello everyone

    I know this has been covered several times as I checked but I have no prior knowledge and wanted to explain everything I want.

    After spending all week cutting hundreds of pieces of paper all in the same size I realise there must be something that does it for me. I have no knowledge of machines and did think I could get a punch do do the work for me but I would need a lot of punches.

    I make wedding stationery, which involces cutting a lot of squares of paper in exactly the same size. I normally use a craft knife and metal ruler, but the capacity to make mistakes is rather large and it takes a long time.
    I also have to print out the words wedding invitation or evening invitation and lot, and have to cut these into small rectangles.

    Is there a machine that can cit these for me. I have heard of the robo and another that I can't remember the name of (searched too many threads I think!) I would plan to insert a sheet of A4 into it for example, and expect it to cut all the squares for me. I would like to mess around with it and learn all I can!

    I would like to go to a shop and see any of these machines working, but we don't have any near us. I may be able to go to Glasgow and have a look see, bt I don't know where any craft shops are in Glasgow!
    I feel a bit dim actually, I have been crafting since I was a little girl but I think it is about time I moved into this century!

    Also, how much would I expect to pay for anything. You see - I don't even know what any of them are called or what they can do! I think I may have alook at the craft channel too, as they seem to have good demonstrations that may help

    Sorry for the long winded post that doesn't really make any sense. I just wish to save time and effort!
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  • #2
    You are not alone! I read posts referring to the Robo and other machines and I am completely baffled.

    As to the craft channel, if it is the one I think you mean, I have been told that they have moved on from cards to jewellery!

    I am sure one of the card people will be along at some point today to explain all to us!
    Reach for the moon-if you miss-you'll still be amongst stars


    • #3

      Have you had a look on youtube? They sometimes have video demo's on crafty things (saw one the other day to make a tiara), so maybe they would have demo's of things like the robo - I don't have one, so I can't offer advice on that.
      I buy packs of handmade paper and stuff, and sometimes they're all cut up for me (height of laziness!!), but they can sometimes need a trim down because they're on a wonly angle - which might explain why they're cheaper!!

      Well, I'm not sure if I was actually any help with that advice

      Sally x x
      Friendship is like peeing on yourself: everyone can see it, but only you get the warm feeling that it brings

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      • #4
        I don't know much about card making at all, but what about the guillotines that cut paper? I used one at school (many, many moons ago - left in '85!!) It had measurements down the side, you put paper to the size you want, push down the blade and it's cut.

        It would save some time and effort for you, you wouldn't have to use a ruler and knife.

        Bet there is a machine that can do it!



        • #5
          I know nothing about cards at all but I noticed that Lidl have a combined guillotine and paper cutter - the sort you slide down with a blade underneath ( sorry for getting a bit technical there !!! lol ) That may do the job.


          Edited to add link.


          • #6
            A good slide cutter - there are cheap ones but you can't guarantee accuracy.

            Dahle are reasonable but my preference is for a Rotatrim with a paperstop on it. Depending which model you get you can cut accurately through a few sheets at once.

            With the lower priced guillotines (liftup and slice down) there is a tendency to shearing with more than one sheet in situ.

            You'll probably find either Dahle or Rotatrim on ebay or secondhand.
            ElaineJ soap and other stuff


            • #7
              Well, as a robo user and lover I thought I had better add my opinion lol!

              The craft robo is fantastic, I absolutely love mine to bits BUT depending on how much use you will get out of it, it is quite expensive. About £200 new I think, although I got mine second-hand from the uk scrappers forum market place, and I know fluffy squirrel did the same.

              It would be perfect for what you want to do with it because you just set it to cut, and it does it for you, no effort required! It is quite a bit of learning to get the hang of it to start with, although just cutting squares etc would be fairly easy for a beginner!

              If you get the proper robo rather than the lite version you can also do a print and cut, which means you can print your greetings from the robo software (with your normal printer), and then because it has also printed tiny marks on the corners of the paper it can line up with these and cut the rectangles etc around them. Or you can put a pen in the robo instead of the blade, and use all the fonts on your computer with whatever sparkly/metallic/fine-liner/glittery/amazing pen you want!

              On the other hand, you could get a die-cutting machine instead, such as the big shot or cuttlebug, and then buy the dies for it such as a square. An advantage of doing this would be that the embossing folders for the die-cutting machines are really good, and you get some lovely effects, and it would work out cheaper than the robo, depending how many dies you ended up buying! Die-cutting machines are hard work if you have got a lot to cut out though, you end up with a sore arm!

              If you want to see some ideas of what the robo can do, join up to the uk scrappers forum and search in the gallery for robo. I have also just posted a picture on my blog of a mobile that my robo helped me make!

              I hope this helps a bit!

              Claire x


              • #8
                Thank you for your posts - you have all been a great help

                I really fancy the robo thing, but I think it is going to have to be something I save up for. However, I did get my paper trimmer out of the dusty bookcase where I shoved it a few weeks ago, and it took me 30 minutes to cut paper that normally takes 3 hours!!!! I am well chuffed. I did try to use it previously and never got to grips with it (after looking at it properly, I realised I wasn't reading the measurements properly!) and I had a great time this afternoon messing about with it.

                I really like the idea of the robo cutting all the slips of paper for me - it would save a lot of time. Even with the trimmer I still spend quite a bit measuring everything properly and making sure I am cutting it correctly. So I think it will be one of those things that will pay for itself, as I will save that much more time that I will be able to accept more work.

                I am bookmarking this thread, so keep the comments coming. I would love to know what everyone else uses and how long they have had it.

                x x x
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                • #9
                  How about the cricut? The basic one costs £200-£300 and the cartridge that comes with it does a simple alphabet and lots of shapes. You can change the size of the shape it cuts out starting from about 0.5 inch up to about 5 inches. You can also tell it to cut out multiples.

                  I know the cricut is expensive, so maybe a paper trimmer like others suggested earlier. If you get a big one with measurments on, you can have cut all the shapes out in no time!
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                  • #10
                    I tend to make lots of identical cards rather than different ones, so I often need 50 of something too!

                    The cheapest and simplest option is a rotary trimmer (which I see you have just had a play with!) - they come in a range of sizes and quality - but a good one should cut 4 or 5 pages of paper at a time easily.. Most come with cutting guides printed on them - usually a ruler as well as things like outlines for specific sizes like a4, a5 a6 etc.

                    The problem with cutting out sayings is that they are relatively tiny so you have to measure, but the better/more expensive cutters will have a sliding guide which can make that a lot easier.

                    I am presuming you print your messages out on your computer using a word processor, then cut them up afterwards, rather than stamping or embossing or using peel offs, if so get a bit of routine to it, and you will be much much quicker - it sounds like you are maybe cutting each saying out one at a time..(my apologies if you are already doing the following.. but even the brightest folk overlook some simple things!)

                    First, are you using the word processor to line up your text? or do you do it by eye, pressing the space bar and "return" to add space between them?? If so, you will find it far easier to learn to do it using the columns tool and the alignment tool - that way every one is the same size and automaticlaly centered (I am happy to explain that bit in more detail if you or anyone is stuck!)

                    DO ALL your cuts at once!! As tradesmen always used to say, measure twice, cut once.. in other words, make sure you measure accurately, but once you have, and you have double checked, cut everything that needs to be the same size!! also do the longest cuts first. you will need fewer cuts over all.

                    print off your sheet full of sayings/messages - if possible, try and do this with the paper portrait rather than landscape (I know the longer sayings might not fit 2 across the page, but shorter ones you might get 2 or 3 columns).

                    Because your printer cant print edge to edge, you will have a margin to trim off, but you only need to do this on one side, so for example trim off the left margin, to the beginning of your first column.

                    For the next bit there are two options. Option one is to calculate the measurements for each column.. lets take an example of 2 columns on your page, each one 10 cm wide - you need to measure the width of your remaining sheet(minus the margin you trimmed off before!) subtract 10cm in this case, then line up your papers, and cut every sheet at that setting.. you will end up with identical long strips of paper.. Now subtract a further 10cm and cut all the remaining sheet - do all these long cuts first!

                    Option 2 is to just measure for one column, so using the example above, just measure 10cm. Feed the paper in with the trimmed off side closest to you, and cut 10cm off every sheet.. then repeat on every sheet to cut the next 10cm off

                    I prefer option 2.. it is a bit more fiddly feeding the paper completely in to the trimmer each time, but if you have a moveable paper guide, it makes measuring far less tricky! Again, do all the identical cuts at once, it saves having to measure out the same cuts time and time again!

                    Now you should have lots of long strips all with your sayings on.. you can probably feed these through and trim them off by eye, or repeat option 1 or 2 above and cut each set accordingly.. but by doing all the identical cuts at the same time, you will have saved a huge amount of time.

                    Oh, and if your trimmer does not have a paper guide that moves up and down, you can use decorators masking tape to tape across the cutter where your bottom edge of paper needs to be.. it will be accurate enough to save you making the measurements every time.. and they peel off easily when you have finished!

                    Hope thats not too confusing??


                    • #11
                      Thank you!

                      sparkysdad - it wasn't too confusing and I see what you mean. I had been using columns already, and last night I cut all my little tabs a lot faster than I normally do. I am still going to go through your post again and see if I can set them all up better.

                      It's partly my own fault. I fell into this by accident and I really need to get my act together. I think a part of me didn't believe anyone would buy anything I make and now they do I'm a little baffled, over whelmed and excited, but keen to do the best job I can
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