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Get Started with Pop 'n Cuts - A2 Base + Circle Stitched Framelits

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Today I want to talk to the folks who haven't yet taken the plunge with Pop 'n Cuts. I often read comments on blogs where people say they have been "resisting" the Pop 'n Cuts dies. Why resist? They're so fun!

The A2 Pop 'n Cuts Base comes prebundled with your first insert, the Circle Label, and right out of the box you can be making some wonderful dynamic pop-up cards. Add in one accessory die - the Circles & Labels Stitched Framelits, and you've got everything you need to make awesome cards.

Patterned paper is a great way to fill space quickly and economically. Most scrapbooking papers are double-sided and there is usually at least one or two papers in every collection that include cut-out embellishments - tags, captions, borders, etc. 

Another comment I hear a lot is "I don't have the (time/skills/patience/die collection) to create the elaborate cards you feature on your blog, Karen."

Good point. I do sometimes cram a lot of dies and techniques into one card and/or video. What can I say? I crave attention. Ha ha.

OK, so here's what I set out to do today. I wanted to convince people that by purchasing just the A2 Pop 'n Cuts Base with included Circle Label plus the companion Circle & Labels Stitched Framelits, that it would be easy to make a pop-up card using just a few sheets of patterned paper and a little ribbon. 


All of my supplies are linked at the bottom of this post, by the way. The patterned paper is from Bo Bunny's Elf Magic collection.

OK, let's get started on the card. I cut a 5" vertical strip from one of the papers with a great graphic in the lower right corner. What a great way to let the patterned paper do all the work for me with my interior decorations. 


When using any Pop 'n Cuts insert, just make sure that the tick marks on the insert are aligned with the tick marks on the base. This ensures that you have the insert placed correctly for a centered card. I often use washi tape on my Pop 'n Cuts bases to show me where the edges of the cut blades are. Makes for easy placement of the paper plus I can identify my different Pop 'n Cuts Base Dies very quickly by just looking at the color/shape of the tape.

You'll need Extended Cutting Pads to use Pop 'n Cuts dies, since they are long dies. After placing the paper over the die cutting area, make a sandwich between the two long cutting pads and roll through the Big Shot. Notice how beat up my cutting pads are - they will etch the image of the dies every time you use them, until eventually they have to be replaced. This is normal!


The Circle Label is a simple box pop-up. Simply get your thumbs into the "box", slide them up to find the fold across the back, scissor your fingers around the card and this will allow you to easily work that fold across the back that brings the circle label forward into the card. Find where the "box" turns down (on both sides of the label) and then close the card to find the final fold, where the circle label touches the card.


To create a backing card (to cover the hole in the pop-up card) simply remove the insert from the die and place a piece of paper over the die with nothing in it. After die cutting using the extended cutting pads, you will have a plain A2-sized card with rounded corners. Fold the card in half.

Typically with Pop 'n Cuts cards you'll want to trim down either your inner pop-up card or your outer backing card so you are not trying to align two of the same-size card, which usually results in the outer card "shifting" when you close the card. 

For my card today, I wanted to preserve a full backing card AND a full pop-up card, so the secret, in that case, is to trim the pop-up card on the center tick marks.



Use scissors to shave just a little paper out of the center tick marks on both sides of the card. This will separate the back part of the card into two halves, but the pop-up itself will keep the halves joined together. Now use a tape runner on one half of the pop-up card, align the outer rounded corners of the pop-up and the backing cards and adhere. Then add tape runner to the other half of the pop-up card (always avoid the pop-up areas with adhesive) and line up the other end's rounded corners. You'll be left with a perfectly-aligned card (no shifting!) with a little stripe of backing card visible at the center line. 


Now I'm switching to the accessory die, and my first step is to cut a frame around one of the cute little Santas in the patterned paper. After die cutting the frame using two cutting pads and the Magnetic Platform, I then switch to the Silicone and Impressions pads to do the embossing step. For this card I did a pressed-down Debossed Stitch. Learn how to do this technique in this video:



You'll see in the photo on the left the way the debossed stitches look without ink. Add a little ink to them (right photo) and they are much more visible. Since the edges of the Framelits die are also debossed during this technique, they will also be highlighted with the ink.



To finish the card's interior I used pop dots on the back of the label and stuck it to the pop-up label. I also added a border strip (cut from the patterned papers) to the card up next to the fold and behind the pop-up. For the top half, I wrapped a ribbon around the card and tied in a decorative knot.


The card front was desperately simple. I simply cut out the greeting block from a piece of the patterned paper and attached it with pop-dots.



I thought this would be the end of my blog post, but as I looked at the pile of remaining supplies it struck me that I could surely get another basic card from the leftovers.



I am not going to walk through all the steps of this card, but I did want to show how you would align your paper and die when you want to make a horizontal Circle Label pop-up card.


Still align your tick marks on the Pop 'n Cuts Base, but then arrange the die so the fold line in the insert is toward the right. Also align your paper face up as shown. After die cutting, you'll have a pop-up that works as a horizontal card:



For this card I did have to add a piece of white cardstock. I didn't have a big enough leftover piece of patterned paper that would work in the horizontal direction needed for this card's backing card. I used one half of the white cardstock as a backing card and then used the Circle Label Stitched Framelits to make a large white decorator label from the leftover cardstock for the front of the card. On this label I tried something new - doing BOTH the debossed and the embossed stitches. After inking it gave an interesting effect where the raised stitches turned red and the debossed stitches stayed white.


 For decorating the pop-up I kept it very simple, with just raised stitch lines and a present (from the patterned paper) cut with the smallest Framelits die in the set.



This is a great illustration of how patterned paper can do all the heavy lifting in a card. Simply die cut, fold and you're practically done!




I definitely thought this would be the end of my blog post, but as I looked at the meager pile of leftover materials I thought . . . could I squeeze one more card out of them?



For this card I did not use the Pop 'n Cuts die to make the backing card. Instead, I was able to get half of an A2 card from leftover patterned paper and the other half from the leftover white cardstock. Before adhering the pop-up in the card I cut two parallel slits on the upper fold line to create an extra little stair-step pop-up inside the card. I affectionately refer to those little extra stairstep platforms as "chunky" and by making one, you get an extra platform for animating, in this case, my patterned paper present and postmark.



At the end of this card I was left with only these scraps. Not too shabby!





Can you believe it? Three quick, easy and affordable cards using just the Pop 'n Cuts Base Die and Circle Label Stitched Framelits plus three sheets of double-sided paper, one sheet of cardstock, some ribbon, ink and a few pop-dots. 

Well I hope I've convinced you that Pop 'n Cuts cards do not have to cost a fortune or take a lifetime to create. If you've been "resisting", it's time to take the leap and get started! Pop-up cards are like a little bit of magic and everyone loves to receive them!

Here are some shopping links: 

November Pop 'n Cuts Card Class (w/instructions)

Last week was insane. John was out of town all week on business, I had my monthly Designer Challenge post to complete, and because we were going out of town to a family wedding for the weekend, the dogs had to go to the vet for a mandatory canine flu vaccine, which resulted in Katie going to the doggie E.R. later that night with an allergic reaction.


I did manage to get Friday's card class designed and kitted, but ran out of time to complete my usual instruction sheets for each card. I promised my students that I would put the photos and instructions on my blog, so here they are.

 CARD #1: Butterfly Clear "Thank You" Card


  1. Using the Square Pop 'n Cuts Base with Ornate Edge, die cut a piece of Cinder Cardstock to be the backing card.
  2. Fold a piece of lightweight green spotted patterned paper in half and place it on the die with the fold line about 1/8" lower than the tick marks on the die. After die cutting, this will create a shorter version of the decorative-edged card, giving a two-tone effect top and bottom. Before adhering the green card inside the backing card, trim a little from both sides of the green card to create side borders.
  3. Place the Label Pop 'n Cuts Insert inside the Pop 'n Cuts Base and cover with a thin clear material (Grafix lightweight clear, write-on-transparency or Bazzill light plastic paper) Work the folds to create the pop-up label.
  4. Die cut two borders using the Banner & Borders Thinlits and glue them onto the transparency sheet near the top and near the bottom as shown. Use scissors to trim away any clear material above and below the borders. Add mini glue-dots or glue behind the border pieces and adhere the pop-up piece inside the card, aligning the center folds. (Use adhesive only behind the border pieces where it will be hidden.)
  5. Use the Label Framelits to cut a decorater label for the front of the pop-up. Also use the Framelits set to cut the center portion of a label to stamp with "Thank You". Layer the two pieces onto the pop-up label.
  6. Die cut a small butterfly from glitter paper. To attach the butterfly where it will definitely be hidden when the card is closed, first place the butterfly face down near the edge of the card. Add a mini-glue dot to the lower wing and close the card against it. This will attach the butterfly to the pop-up label in a position that works.
  7. Tie a ribbon bow and attach inside the card.
  8. For the front of the card, die cut a large patterned paper label using the Label Framelits Set, a large corrugated Butterfly using the Bigz Butterflies & Labels, and a cream cardstock Label Trellis Border using the Sizzlits Decorative Strip die. Cut a section of the border to layer vertically over the label.
  9. For the Butterfly, peel away some of the outer layer to reveal some corrugation and then spray paint with a mixture of glossy white and silver glitter. (Craft store purchases) After the paint dries, attach the butterfly to the label using a staple vertically in the center. Use two large self-adhesive pearls to cover the staple.
  10. The finished card measures 5" x 5" and can be mailed in an A7 rectangular envelope (5" x 7") for a single stamp.

Supply Links for Butterfly Card:

CARD #2: Rudolph Gift Card Holder


  1. Cut a 4" x 6" piece of green patterned paper. Place the Circle Label Pop 'n Cuts insert into the A2 Pop 'n Cuts Base die and align the tick marks in the center. Place the patterned paper centered over the Circle Label portion of the die and die cut. Work the folds to create the pop-up circle label.
  2. Remove the insert and die cut a patterned paper backing card. Fold the backing card in half and attach the pop-up label piece inside the backing card using a tape runner and avoiding the pop-up areas.
  3. Die cut a cream Gift Card Holder, a green small tag and a white large tag using the Gift Card Holder Framelits dies. Stamp the reindeer onto the gift card holder and then attach it to the front of the pop up. Add washi tape to the small tag and then staple it somewhere on the Gift Card Holder. Add a red glitter dot to the nose of the reindeer.
  4. Die cut two red swirly borders from the Banner & Borders Thinlits die set. Cut a 0.5" strip of leftover red and glue the red strip and one of the swirly borders inside the card over the paper seams. Add the large white tag as a place to write a personal greeting. 
  5. For the front of the card, emboss a 4" x 5" white piece of cardstock with the Label Trellis Embossing Folder. Cut a decorative edge onto that piece using the Square Pop 'n Cuts Base (or any other type of decorative edge). Glue the embossed piece to the front of the card and add the other red swirly border on the left side.
  6. Stamp the stockings onto a piece of white cardstock and then cut them out using the Labels & Stitched Frames Framelits set. After die cutting, switch to the stitching die to create a raised embossed stitch. Color the stamped image and highlight the raised stitches with a light gray marker. Glue the finished label to the front of the card. (Watch the video below to learn how to make a raised embossed stitch)
  7. The finished card can be mailed in an A2 envelope for a single stamp.

Supplies for Rudolph Gift Card Holder Card:

 CARD #3: Bunny Cocoa Card


  1. Die cut a backing card from patterned paper using the Square Pop 'n Cuts Base with Ornate Edge.  Also cut a black flourish from the same die. Fold the backing card in half.
  2. Cut a 4.25" x 8.5" piece of cream cardstock and center it over the Mug Pop 'n Cuts insert, placed in the Square Pop 'n Cuts Base die. Die cut and then work the folds to create a pop-up mug on the left side of the card as shown. Round all four corners and stamp the greeting in the lower right corner of the card.
  3. Place a piece of patterned paper over just the mug portion of the die and then trim to just the mug after die cutting. Highlight some of the snowflakes in the patterned paper with glitter dot stickers. 
  4. Hand cut some marshmallows from scraps of white cardstock and glue them to the pop-up mug before adding the paper mug over the top. If desired, highlight some of the marshmallow edges with a light gray marker. Also add two marshmallows to the card above the greeting.
  5. Use a tape runner to add the pop-up card inside the backing card, lining up the center folds and avoiding all the pop-up areas.
  6. Die cut a red felt heart and glue it to the pop-up heart.
  7. For the front of the card, stamp the bunny on a piece of cream cardstock and then use the Labels & Stitched Frames to cut it out, nesting the stitching die inside the cut die for a pressed stitch all in one step. Color the bunny as desired.
  8. Die cut a vellum snowflake and attach it to the label with a large silver brad. Use a red Copic marker to color the brad, if desired. Attach the finished label to the front of the card and overlay with the black flourish.
  9. The finished card measures 5" x 5" and can be mailed in an A7 rectangular envelope (5" x 7") for a single stamp.

Supplies for Bunny Cocoa Card:

CARD #4: Season's Greetings Poinsettia Card


  1. Cut a 4.75" x 12" strip of red patterned paper and red cardstock. Place the Poinsettia Insert in the A2 Pop 'n Cuts Base and die cut the patterned paper. Bring the two poinsettias up to meet in the middle and use a glue dot at the top to hold them together. Remove the Poinsettia Insert from the Pop 'n Cuts base and die cut a red cardstock backing card.
  2. Emboss the backing card using the Berry Swirls Embossing Folder. Before adhering the Pop 'n Cuts card inside the backing card, use scissors to cut the pop-up card on the center fold. (Make sure the Poinsettias are still connected to each other) Trim the length of the pop-up card so some of the background will be visible top and bottom. Use a tape runner to adhere each half of the card into the backing card. By cutting along the center fold the pop-up can open fully flat inside the backing card.
  3. Add Be Creative tape (or Xyron) white cardstock and then die cut the Noel and Poinsettia using the Noel Sizzlits set. Peel up the liner on the adhesive and cover with Warm Glitter, burnishing it into the adhesive for a smooth flake-free finish. Add red glitter dots to the center of the poinsettia and add to the pop-up using pop-dots. 
  4. Die cut two green leaves and one green berry vine and add them to the pop-up as shown. If desired, use red Stickles on the berries. Add strips of coordinating washi tape to the top and bottom seams inside the card. Add the glittery Noel word inside the card.
  5. For the card front, add a strip of patterned paper across the card, then a section of Label Trellis Border strip, die cut from cream cardstock. Die cut two green holly leaves and string floss through a clear and green button.
  6. Use the Sassy Labels Framelits to cut out a stamped white greeting on from red cardstock. Use the pressed down debossed technique to add the stitch lines. (Watch the video for instructions on this look) Add the finished label to the card using pop dots and layer the holly and buttons as shown.
  7. The finished card can be mailed in an A2 envelope. (Use a single button instead of two buttons if worried about the height of the card requiring additional postage)

Season's Greetings Poinsettia Card Supplies: 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

November Designer Challenge - RED + Stitched Framelits

It's my favorite day of the month - Designer Challenge Day! 

Designer BlogsI have amazing designer friends.

Eleven of them participate each month in the Designer Challenge and if you'd like to bookmark their blogs, you'll find a handy list of links in the sidebar to the left. 

The worldwide web is a beautiful thing. The designers are from five different countries and five different states and through the power of the interwebs (heh), all of their amazing inspiration collides into one epic blog post each month.

This month the theme is RED plus Stitched Framelits. You can see all the projects and find links to the specific blog posts on the Sizzix Blog Here.

For my project, I knew I wanted to make a wedding card for John's cousin Jennifer, who is marrying Tony on Saturday. My original thought was to make a more traditional card focused on their big day, but then I spotted this beautiful Home-themed patterned paper from Little Yellow Bicycle and it made me think more in terms of celebrating their future life (and home) that they will build together from this day forward.



This month's video tutorial is an overview of Stitched Framelits and how to get different looks.


For my card, I used the Pressed Down Debossed Stitch effect for all the labels.


 Here is a close-up of the House so you can see some of the details. I embossed the texture onto the house using the Silicone/Impressions sandwich (learn about that technique in the Thankful House Video Tutorial) and then, while the paper was still in the die, I sponged red ink through the holes and onto the embossed surfaces for a clean look. I also used the die as a stencil and outlined all the bricks and slats with a red felt-tip pen before removing the paper from the die. For the curtains, I put tiny strips of a sheer red ribbon in between the window frames and panes. The heart is cut from felt.


For a place to write a personal message, I added a Pressed Down Debossed Sassy Label to the bottom portion of the card.


There are so many amazing RED Stitched Framelits inspiration projects, that you'll want to make sure to check out the Sizzix Blog and then each of the individual blogs as well. Just settle in with a drink and snack - it's worth it!

If you're interested in purchasing the products I used on my project, here are some shopping links. I also included a link to the Circle Label Stitched Framelits, which are not used on my project, but are shown in the video.

My final Designer Challenge for Sizzix will be posted on the Sizzix blog on December 5th. The theme is "Anything Goes" so you will see a wide variety of colors, themes and textures from the designers. One twist, though, is that they will all feature a different insert or die from the Karen Burniston collection. This means that you'll get the opportunity to see around a dozen different dies featured in one post. It will be epic - mark your calendars!

Happy Crafting!

Sentimental Saturday - Pop-up Cake Die

Today I'm feeling sentimental for one of my very first Sizzix designs - the 3D Pop-up Cake Die. You can still purchase this die, while supplies last, from the Sizzix site at a great price.

The Cake is one of the most time-consuming and product-dependent dies I've ever designed. Wow! I'm really selling it, huh? The thing is, even though you have to take time, use strong adhesive, reinforce your connections and choose bendable side tier materials . . . the results are SO worth it. I've made more Cake cards over the years than any other die. Here are some of those cards:

Ann Bday Card Anniversary Card CakeBday Card 11 THBest Wishes Wedding CardBirthday Cake Card SUEmma Princess Birthday CardFlower Birthday CardGretchen Bday2Harley Birthday CardNew Years CardPink Birthday Cake CardSU Come as you Arent Halloween CardSU Flower Pot Birthday CardSU Wedding Cake NanetteSweet Emma Purse CardTogether Forever Wedding Cake



Here is a video tutorial for assembling the cake. The Red/Black cake above is the one that I make in the video.


If you'd like to own your very own Cake Die, you can purchase it from the Sizzix site here: 3D Pop-up Cake Die

"Be Jolly" Accordion Album

Next week is my monthly Designer Challenge on the Sizzix blog. This month the challenge is:

RED + Stitched Framelits

The designers were challenged to use the color RED predominantly in their project and to also incorporate one of the three *NEW* Stitched Framelits from my Sizzix collection. Their choices for Stitched Framelits are:

Each of these Framelits sets include cut dies and stitch dies which are independent from each other, making it possible to use the stitch lines nested inside the cut dies for a single pass downward stitch, OR the stitched dies can be used on their own to make a pressed stitch on a card front or layout OR they can be used to create a raised embossed stitch by using the Silicone & Impressions pads in place of the bottom cutting pad. To watch me do the raised stitch effect, check out the Thankful House Video (skip to 10:30) and/or the Multi-Tier w/Spiral video (skip to 6:33).

The Designers will be posting their projects on their own blogs next Monday and Tuesday (November 18, 19, 2013) and then I will compile all the project links plus a *BRAND NEW* project and video from me, into one big post on the Sizzix Blog next Thursday, November 21, 2013. If you don't want to wait until Thursday to peruse the designers' projects, make sure you "LIKE" my new Karen Burniston, Designer Facebook Page, where all the projects will be linked in real time as they go up on the designers' blogs.

I decided I needed a warm-up project. I've been so busy with teaching that I haven't had much time for crafting. Plus, CHA is right around the corner and I have a ton of work to do to prepare for my new launch with Elizabeth Craft Designs

For this warm-up project, I decided to use some of my new Stacey Yacula Rubber Stamps from Purple Onion Designs. I fell in love with these stamps after seeing them used so amazingly by both Kelly Booth and Helen Cryer. Of course, after seeing their creations I was also pretty darn intimidated! Ack! 


I cut the Accordion Album out of red cardstock and used the companion Frame & Label Bracket die to cut two red cardstock outer frames and two Shimmer Sheetz outer frames. All of the frames were embossed with the Berry Swirls Embossing Folder.


For the inner panels, I also used the Frame & Label Bracket die to cut the Labels from white cardstock on which I added Be Creative Adhesive Sheets. After die cutting, I removed the liner from the adhesive and covered the white labels with Warm Diamond MicroFine Glitter from Elizabeth Craft Designs. The glitter is so fine that it does not flake off. Just burnish it into the adhesive and you're set. Very easy to stamp right over the top of the glitter and to color the images with Copics.  


The snowman's buttons and the centers of the stamped snowflakes have Glitter Peel-off Dots stickers on them. I love these flat sticker embellishments from Elizabeth Craft Designs that give all the wonder of rhinestones but without any bulk. 

After I stamped and colored each panel of the scene, I ran the panels through the Big Shot using the Labels & Stitched Frames Framelits to add the raised embossed stitch lines. I highlighted the stitches with a dark gray Copic marker.


I used the Gift Card Holder Framelits set to die cut a small tag around my "be jolly!" greeting. I attached the tag to the third page using a rhinestone brad through a felt snowflake (Creative Impressions, from my stash) I felt like the tag needed some edging, so I turned to one of my new favorite items, a Wink of Stella glitter brush pen. They were a gift from Kelly and they are super cool! The ends are brushes and they dispense a liquid color infused with glitter for a very quick and pretty sheen.

Shopping links for the items used on this project are below:

Stay tuned next week for a ton of RED + Stitched Framelits inspiration during Designer Challenge Week!