Monday, August 31, 2015

Using Scraps: How to Use the Negative Space of a Paper Punch

I wasn't originally going to a blog post on this, but it's just such a cool idea, that I had to do it. I also was not going to use it for my Scraps series, but it occurred to me that it actually would work very well.  You know, since the main attraction is totally made up of scraps.

The punch I used is the Martha Stewart Crafts Crochet Flower Punch all Over the Page.  I love the elegant look of it, and that I can punch all over the page!  I got this awesome idea when I made a card recently (that I'm hoping to do a blog post on sometime soonish) that I used this punch for, and as some of you might know, I'm a leetle bit of a hoarder when it comes to anything I might be able to use on a card.  Poo.  I can't help it.  Bahaha.  That is a lie.  So, I didn't want to throw away those little tiny pieces that fall out the bottom, and of course the most obvious way to put them to use (in my mind) was to get a template of a piece of something I'd already punched, and fill in the spaces!  I was so excited to try it out, and am still excited about how it turned out and all, but I can assure you, this was a one time thing.  I worked on it over several days, and some days for at least an hour.  Overall, this had to take many, many hours.  My art teacher has told me many times I have the "patience of a saint."  I don't know about that, but this is certainly not for everyone!
 The picture above shows the process of gluing down the pieces halfway through.  I filled in the spaces with white paper, so it may be a bit hard to distinguish, but hopefully you can see that some of the spaces have been filled in, while others are still empty.

As you can see, I put tape on the edges so that the template stays in place when gluing down the pieces.  I used regular scotch tape, but masking tape would work well also.  Anything that won't tear the paper when peeling off will work.
A toothpick, or some other pointy object, is necessary for putting glue in a space, pushing the pieces into their spaces, and also helpful for getting the little ones where they need to go (dab a little glue on the toothpick and carry the piece to it's spot).  Toothpicks work well because the ends sort of flatten a little, so they don't pierce the paper.  The pieces look kind of spotty and textured because I pressed them down by poking them all over with the toothpick.

Before I actually started adding in the pieces, I thought they would fit right in, but they actually seemed to be a little bigger than the spaces I was forcing them into, at least that was the case for the biggest pieces.  That's why there's sort of a lip on the edge of the big pieces.
Finally, after everything was filled in and the glue dried, I carefully peeled the tape off the edges, and began to pull up the template.  It's not as easy as it looks.  Maybe it doesn't even look easy.  In any case, it wasn't as easy as I thought it would be.  Since the template was not glued down, I expected to be able to simply pull it up (although, as soon as I started gluing everything in, I knew that wasn't going to happen).  That was not the case.  The reason for that is partly that the big pieces were a little too big, which, understandably, would make it a bit harder to pull up, but it was mostly hard because, especially when doing the small pieces, glue got under the template, and then made the template tear when I was trying to pull it up.  Heheh, I thought I was going to be able to keep this template to use for future cards, but I ended up throwing it away because it was so ripped and messed up.
Sometimes a layer of paper from the little pieces would come off, and I would just glue it back on.
I went all around and finally worked my way to the bottom right corner, where I finished up.
Because the template was accidentally glued down in some places as I already explained, some bits of the pink template were left behind.  I hadn't imagined it that way, but I really like the way it looks with those small pops of color!  If you see bits of blue in there also, that's because I had previously used that template to watercolor over on some card (another way of using negative space).
I apologize for that smudge in the upper right corner (and I apologize if you didn't notice it until now).  That's something on the lens of my camera that I can't figure out how to get rid of, so it's on every picture.  Hmph.  Anyhooo, since there are bits of color scattered throughout, and I thought it didn't look finished, I added a little pink bow at the bottom.  I'm not sure it was the best placing, but I can't do anything about it now, so I guess it doesn't matter!  Hope you like it!

Be sure to ask me any questions you have if I missed anything!


  1. That does look tedious, but it turned out really pretty! And no, I didn't notice the smudge until you pointed it out. ;)

    1. Heh, I was afraid of that. Maybe I shouldn't have mentioned it. Oh well! Thanks!

  2. Oh my goodness, Maggie, this card is amazing!

    1. Thank you! It took a lot of time, but I think it was worth it!


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