Yep, you read that right- Faux Letterpress. You may know how to use this technique with your cutting machine already, but it was news to me! I love the clean, simple line look with a slight depression that comes with Letterpress. So classic. Besides, I am always looking for fun and creative ways to use my electronic cutting machines and this fits the bill. I can try something new without having to purchase additional supplies. Anything that saves money!
Making faux letterpress is pretty much the same as the embossing with the exception that you would use a pen in place of the tool. The foam mat really helps the pen get that depression that is indicative of Letterpress. Here are the supplies again:
- embossing mat (make your own if you don’t have one!)
- Seasoned Christmas Cut It (mittens) by Lettering Delights
- pen or marker (a thinner point creates a cleaner look)
Place a pen into your machine. Since we are cutting the outlines, try to get your pen as centered as possible. Have your pen draw the inner lines of your file. Start on a lower force and bump it until you get a nice impression. I like to write settings down for future use. You need to start with a lower force otherwise if it is too high it will tear into your paper and mat. The pen tip will go right through. Be careful using a heavy flow pen or marker and going over it too many times. It will make your lines very wet and tear your project.
Replace your pen with the blade after the machine has completed drawing. Note, if you have your blade set correctly, it will just barely scratch the foam like it would on your regular mat as evidenced below. Another tip, if you lower your pen just a little more than it should normally be it helps with the impression and how dark your ink will be.
The bottom left set of mittens is with my pen at the normal height. The top middle left is with it slightly lowered. Much better impression and inking. Yeah, ignore that tear in my foam. My blade went wonky for some reason when I was test cutting. I must have had the blade too far out.
Yes, I know you wouldn’t use shiny ink in Letterpress. I used a metallic gel pen from the dollar bin so the camera would catch the depressions. Can you see them? If you can’t, I can vouch that this is surefire faux Letterpress on the cheap! You did catch the cheap part, yes? Cheap is my second favorite word. The first being “free.” Ha!