Product Review - Sizzix Scoreboards XL Die Journal by Eileen Hull
Trying out new products is always something I take great enjoyment from. The latest product which has been taking the craft market by storm is the Sizzix Journal Die by Eileen Hull. Part of their Scoreboards XL range, this die both cuts and scores to create a really effective and easy to put together journal covers and elements.
Tapping in to a key trend in mixed media, this die allows you to create a truly personalised journals. For this review I have chosen to showcase just two ways of using the dies, along with some important tips I found along the way!
The pack contains the die along with a set of instructions. The die will cut one cover at a time, with a closure, tab and panel. It is important to note you will need the extended cutting pads to use the die.
First up a journal created from 1mm thick chipbaord and decorated in my typical vintage style.
The die easily cuts the chipboard, leaving clean edges and scores enough to make the folds. When creating your journals, always fold the scores using a table edge to give even pressure along the fold. I found it good to fold first, then flatten out the covers and position them next to each other to create my design.
The die also cuts the holes required for the binding. Use 1.5mm elastic cord threaed through the holes, following the instructions included, to create three rows of elastic that your journal papers can be insterted under.
Due to the nature of chipboard you can paint straight on to the surface, layering up your paints and crackle medium to give a weathered look to your covers.
I added stencilled elements to further enhance the "old book" style and finished the covers with a framed vintage photo and a lace bow clousure.
This "painting direct" method opens up a whole worlds of possibilities to try out all you favourite techniques, the die's ability to cut thick substrate means the covers will stand up to a lot of work.
Next up the "paper" method.
Here we have a really quick way to produce a pretty and coordinated journal. While you can cut the papers seperately, I found it is far easier to layer up mat board with your chosen papers - fix them to the mat board using double sided adhesive sheet and trim to fit. Sizzix produce a mat board that is sized to fit the scoreboard dies to make this process even easier.
If you are using a paper with a repeating pattern like I have chosen - take the time to match up the patterns finding a middle point. You can even mark up your die with centre points by using a white marker so you always have a reference point.
I also found it good the create a template to follow. By cutting plain card using the die, I could mark the card to indicate the direction in which the die would cut, to create front and back covers.
When creating journals using the "paper" method, pick out a oolour theme to work with. I decided to work with a base colour of black - the inside of the covers are black, as is the cord.
The elastic binding means you can easily slip in journal papers and change them around to suit. A quick way to add pages is to use excersise books trimed to fit.
There are serveral different ways to add a closure to the journals, my preferred method is using a wrap around cord strung through the centre hole on the spine and tided in a bow.
I have really enjoyed working with this die, I particularly like the simplicity of the design and I am impressed with just how thick a base the die can cut.