I have found over the years with crafting some neat trips (tips and tricks) that have been pretty useful. We all know how expensive crafting can be especially with all the little accessories we just have to have.
Brayer - I actually just stumbled across this one last night at Michaels. They had in their dollar bins, little kid's rolling pins, made out of wood. This works just as well as a wood or rubber brayer.
Transfer tape for vinyl - I have some and not that it is horribly expensive but you know when you need it you are out of it, and you don't want to have to wait for it to be shipped. I have used Contact brand repositionable clear contact paper, but also after school starts Staples has rolls of Clear cover repositionable contact type paper. I wait until the school stuff goes on clearance and get it for .50 a roll. I tested it on one of my kanob patterns and it worked great, I would check it every week and it would peel off and not leave a residue at all.
Knitting needles - I have several sizes that I always buy on clearance, or if you knit you don't have to buy them. These work great for rolling the edges on projects like flowers and such. And if you have used a little too much glue and some shows around the edges, a needle works great for cleaning it up.
Dry wall tape - This product comes on a roll and really is a webbing, but one side has stick to it. So if you are cutting out a project that has small pieces or multiple pieces that need to stay together and gluing. Cut a strip off and putt the sticky side over your pieces on your mat. Carefully lift off, I always try to walk it off which means you kind of move it side to side instead of straight off, This seems to hold the pieces on better. Then lay the webbing down with the pieces face up and glue them. Then take your webbing and place on your project and press down. Just make sure not to use a lot of glue. When dry carefully walk the webbing off and viola all those itty bitty pieces are attached.
Weeding Vinyl - This has to be one of my absolute favorites. I use a program called Sign Cut, it is software that is available with the Black Cat Cougar machines, well worth the money. Although when I got my cougar, their weren't programs like MTC that worked with them. But their is a weeding feature that can make life wonderful and you can use these steps on any machine. What the weeding feature does is add vertical lines to your projet that stop right where your pattern cuts. This makes weeding your vinyl so much easier. Now to make your own weeding layer is super simple. Create a page that has vertical lines I would draw some straight lines about 3 inches in length across a page, and make several rows. Now when you have a project insert those lines as their own layer. The reason I only make them about three inches in length is so you can shorten or lengthen them in regards to your project, you can also delete the ones you don't need. I make about 3, 3" lines across and make about 4 or 5 rows of those lines. It really helps when weeding.
Re-Sticking your mats - I hate doing this, but mats are so expensive I make my self. First if you wash them with a nylon scrubber and some diswashing soap and warm water, and dry them you might find you still have sticky left. You can also use non-alcohol baby wipes this will help to get all the gunk off the mats as well. But if you have to re-sticky them, I have found Aileene's Tack it over and Over Again works nice. You mix it in a sealable plastic bowl, 50/50 water and glue. Tape off your mat and use a sponge brush. This dries fairly quick with in maybe 10 or 15 minutes, but I live in the desert so it might take longer in different climates. The great thing is that the left overs sealed in a bowl last, and if you wash your brush you can use it again. When I went into Michaels it was over in the glue section and is about 4.99 for a four ounce bottle which I figure will last a very long time.
If you have any tips or tricks please feel free to add him. Thanks for following my blog, and have a super great Sunday.