Embossing Plate Paper

Ursula's Digital Mixed-Media
Make your own Embossing Plate

I always joke that I don’t have my own manufacturing company, and would love to so that I could make embossing folders, dies and rubber stamps to my heart’s content. The reality is, of course, that it isn’t likely that will ever happen and so I make do with whatever I can do on my own 😉  . So this week’s post is an experiment that resulted in a cool way to make my own embossing plate from one of my stencils that I cut on my digital cutter.

Using a Sign that I bought at the hardware store, I cut it down and used Gel Medium/Modeling Paste through a stencil to create the embossing plate. Then I used the correct “sandwich” in my Sissix Big Shot die cutter to in order to emboss.


The key to this method is the sign board. It is much stiffer than other material (like matboard or chipboard although you can still try with those if you have them on hand). You will need heavy duty shears to cut this material.

I used Extra Heavy Gel Medium from Golden in this case. It worked the best for me, but You can try other mediums you have on hand. If it dries thick and stiff, that will work the best. Some mediums like certain molding pastes might crumble when you use it, but you can always try it if that’s all you have on hand and if it doesn’t hold up, you can try a different one later. These will not hold up indefinitely like plastic will, but if you have a friend with a 3D printer- you can always see if they can create a plate or folder for you. This post talks about using one of those.

You do not need to cut your own stencil like I did. Store bought stencils are just as effective.

The basic idea here is to use the gel medium and a craft knife or some other implement to slather the medium through the stencil-like you are frosting a cake.  Then lift off and immediately wipe off the stencil with a wipe or damp paper towel. I typically use Yupo paper which is plastic like typical stencils, but if your stencil is paper just be careful with how wet your cleanup rag is ;). Let the medium dry (I usually wait at least 24 hours). And then you are ready to emboss!

The sandwich I used here was based on my Sizzix Big Shot. You might have to experiment with your layers depending on what machine you have and how thick your plate is and how thick the material you are using to emboss is. I have other videos that use different sandwiches on the Sizzix (here and here).  These are different methods I employ for embossing, but all my embossing videos show the range of sandwiches that can be used with your Big Shot depending on what you are doing,

If you happen to have an Accucut machine here is a post on how to emboss with that.

I am in the process of editing videos on using leather with a variety of things and embossing that with the Big Shot and/or Accucut so stay tuned for those!

My sandwich in this example used the platform that came with the Sizzix Big Shot with none of the tabs ie. all the tabs were folded away from the platform. Then I placed a cutting mat on top of the platform, then the hand made embossing plate stenciled onto the sign material, then the cardstock I was embossing. Finally I used the silicone rubber that is sold to emboss with for these types of machines. Craft foam is not stiff enough so the silicone rubber pads are really a necessity here. Then the final piece is another cutting mat. If you own (or feel like purchasing) the new kits for the Big Shot that come with the rubber and a special embossing mat, then you can use that mat instead. Personally, I think these mats make a difference. Roll the sandwich though the machine and Voila! Embossed Cardstock!

If you are embossing inked or painted cardstock/paper you have to play around with which side to have facing up. In this case you probably want the plain side against the cardstock. But double check me because I am writing this from memory and I do confess to being geometrically challenged haha.

You can spritz the paper/cardstock with water to try to alleviate cracking. I sometimes do an sometimes skip this step and just go with the cracking and make it more of a grunge piece :).

Here’s the video to show how I made the plate and how to use it-

Here is a link to a post where I used on of these embossing plates for an embossed metal card.


Make Your Own Embossing Plate From Stencil
Make Your Own Embossing Plate From Stencil
Embossing Plate Paper
Embossing Plate Paper

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