Greeting cards: types of punches and different punching techniques
Punching is a very simple technique that you can do a lot with. All you need are punches and they come in different sizes and with many different themes. You have punches to make corners and edges, you have punches to make concrete figures and you have punches to make abstract shapes. In addition to the punches, you also need colored or white paper. Now add a little creativity and you’re off! With the piece from which you punched the figures, you can also do fun things afterwards.
What is punching and what do you need for it
To be able to punch you need a punch and different colors of paper.
The paper should not be too thin, otherwise the punch will get caught in it. It should also not be too thick, otherwise you will not get through and damage the mechanism of the punch. Paper between 80 and 120 g is ideal.
A punch is a plastic device with an iron part in it. A punch works in the same way as a hole punch. So you print out a figure, as it were, and at the place where the figure is expressed, a hole in the shape of the figure remains in your paper. The image of the figure to be punched out is on the top of the device. To punch, place the device on a table or another flat surface. You place your sheet in the groove and press the punch with your entire weight. This is the easiest way. You can also punch freehand and hold the device between your thumb and index finger. However, you have to put quite a lot of force on the punch and when you have to make a lot of them your thumb starts to hurt seriously after a while. There is also such a thing as a punch buddy or punch buddy. This is a device where you put your punch and that works as a kind of lever. So you have to put much less force on the device than on the punch itself. Punches are quite expensive each. Nowadays you will find them more and more in discount stores, but often the quality is slightly less.
But with a little creativity you can already do fun things with a few punches. Vary in color, cut a few pieces here and there, stick two together or half over each other and you have a lot of nice ideas!
Types of punches
There are different types of punches.
The ordinary figure punches
These consist of simple figures: flowers, animals, Christmas-bound figures, winter-bound figures, figures for Easter, leaves, twigs, bows, hearts, etc. You have small punches, but you also have large punches or jumbo punches. You also have combination punches. In this case, the punch contains an iron disc with different figures to be punched out. To change figures, turn the disc.
Alphabet and letter punching
You can make words or numbers with these punches. Nice to personalize cards, write the name of the birthday girl on it, create homemade wishes, the age of the birthday boy, dates, etc.
These punches are geometric figures: circles, squares, rectangles, etc. With these punches you can make a kind of patchwork. You can also adjust the existing figures yourself. For example, you can use a square. make two triangles (see below for non-figurative drawings). By playing with different colors of paper or different motifs, you can also make a lot of different designs.
With these punches you actually punch away the paper around the drawing. The drawing thus remains as a silhouette and is attached to your card.
Corner punches are punches that fit especially over the corner of the paper and with which you can make figures on the corners. There are two types of corner punches: corner punches with which you make figures in the paper. For example, you can. make notches to insert a photo or drawing or just punch out decorative figures at the corners. The other kind are punches with which you make the figure on the outside, so that you get a figure on your corner, eg. a butterfly.
These punches are not the small models, but are punches with the motif to be punched out on a stem. This allows you to punch out the figure in the middle of your card eg.
These usually elongated punches allow you to create beautiful edges in one movement. There are different models, but most of them look like lace.
With these punches you can make small holes that form embroidery patterns. No need for a lancing device and mat. A punch and you can start embroidering. No complicated patterns, but simple drawings such as stars, flowers, etc.
Punching techniques: using the punched-out figures
Trim or border
The most obvious way to use punches is to punch out figures and use them on a card as decoration or as a border. For example, you can. punch out butterflies and glue them above a 3D drawing. Or twigs to put behind a flower. Or leaves to stick under a tree. Or you can eg. punch out flowers, snowmen or bows and make a border.
Independent figurative drawing
You can also make a drawing in itself with the punched-out figures. For example, you can. create a bouquet by punching out different flowers. Or you can collect a sea scene by eg. punching out fish, boats, clouds, a sun, buckets, etc. and then gluing it on a beach scene. Make a fruit basket with different figures related to fruit. Or you can make a mandala in different colors and with different figures.
Independent non-figurative drawings
You also have punches with geometric figures. With these geometric figures you can make a kind of patchwork. You can eg. punch out all kinds of squares in different types of paper with a motif and then make a plane with them. Or you can make a composition by playing with punched-out figures and negatives. Or a mandala by pasting the different motifs in ever-expanding circles.
By punching the same figure several times in different colors you can make symmetrical drawings. You can stick them on like that. Or you can first glue the figures onto squares of a different color and make a symmetrical figure with the squares. You can also make different figures with the same punch by eg. cut away a piece. Take eg. an Apple. You stick the first completely on. You cut a piece away from the next one. It looks like you have bitten out a bit. You cut even more of the next one. Continue in this way until only the core is left. Or make a flower with leaves by gluing them around and gluing a pearl in the middle.
Punches to fill a figure
You can also fill a figure with mini punches. A heart, for example, or a butterfly. Glue the whole figure full of mini punches in the same or different colors. Pretty beautiful!
Make mandalas by making circles with the same figures. Stick figure 1 in the middle. Around it figure two in a circle in a different color. Then figure 3 in another color in a circle. Continue in this way until your circle is large enough.
Make mandalas with a specific theme: the sea, winter, fruits, flowers, autumn leaves …
Punching techniques: using the negative
You can also make a border by punching figures from a sheet. You then get recesses with a certain figure. Eg. a border with butterflies. Either you leave the border as it is, or you stick a strip of different colored paper behind it in such a way that you get contrast. To get a perfect edge, put a line where the punch should be. Or you take a certain reference point, eg. the edge of the previous figure. This way all figures are at the same distance from each other.
Make drawings with the negative
There are distance punches in the form of stars, droplets, pearls, etc. Thanks to the long handle of these punches you can make drawings very easily because you can continue working on the paper. For example, you can. make stars all over the sky, fish punching in the whole sea, etc. But you can also make beautiful figures with it. You need special cartridges for this. The final result looks a bit off.
Emboss with the negative
It’s not the first intention, but you can also emboss with the negatives of punched-out figures. You actually use the negative as an embossing die. To do this, place a sheet over the negative, place on a tray and go over it with an embossing pen. You then get small embossed figures. You can also make a border of this or use it on a drawing. You can eg. emboss a background with butterflies. The advantage is that you can emboss the butterflies wherever you want and that you don’t have to buy a special mold for them.
Stamp with negative
You can also stamp with the negative. Place the negative on a sheet. Take chalks and tampon through the hole. You now have a nice figure. Or fill the hole with a little glue. Then sprinkle glitter or colored sand on top. Remove the negative and you have a nice stamp with an extra. An additional advantage: you simply throw the negative away afterwards. So you don’t have to wash it! If that isn’t handy!
Have fun punching and let your creativity run wild! You will see that you always come up with something new, even with one or a few punches!