Tool Tips: Distressing Card Stock Edges

Distressing the edges of card stock is an essential technique for vintage and shabby chic style projects, and you'll want to find the right tools to make that job easy. 

Distressing ToolIf you've watched any of my vintage tutorials, then you know my favorite is this little distressing tool that was part of the Cutter Kit that Stampin' Up! retired this year.  Boo Hoo.

I decided to experiment with some other options so I could show you some tools you may already have that will do the job just as well.

Scissors seemed like an obvious choice, and I started with my Paper Snips since they're always close at hand.  The blades are so thin and sharp that they tended to make cuts in the card stock instead of distressing the edges.

Distressing with Craft & Rubber Scissors-2Next I tried Craft and Rubber Scissors.  They have a thicker blade and aren't quite as sharp. The edges of the card stock came out looking the same as if I'd used the distressing tool.  However, I had to be really careful to keep the blade from cutting into the card stock.

IMG_0107Then I tried a really dull pair of kitchen scissors and they worked quite well.  The distressing looks good, and they didn't cut into the card stock like sharper scissors.

I borrowed some little kids' scissors with thick blades that arent' very sharp, and they worked well, too.

Sanding Block from Stampin' Up!My next experiment was with Stampin' Up!'s Sanding Block.  Unfortunately, even using the coarsest side of the block, it tends to smooth the edge more than distress it.  It will give a little texture to the edge when I sanded perpendicular to the edge that would be a nice effect on some projects.  But it won't work for the shabby chic look I love so much.

Then I went out to the garage and found some files and rasps.  They didn't give me the distressed edge I like, either. 

Distressing with Metal RulerOne more tool I tried is a metal ruler.  It is thin without being very sharp, so is similar to the little "blades" in my favorite distressing tool.  It gives a nicely distressed edge, and doesn't cut into the card stock. 

The alternate options that I think work best are the dull scissors and the metal ruler.  I like the dull scissors a little better because they're more comfortable to hold.  But either one would be an acceptable substitute  if I ever have to give up my old favorite.

Leave a comment and let me know if you've found other tools that you like for distressing the edges of card stock.

2 Responses to Tool Tips: Distressing Card Stock Edges

  1. Sharon Cline July 28, 2012 at 5:47 am #

    Thanks for all you share with us!

  2. Sage Kimble July 28, 2012 at 7:44 am #

    You bet, Sharon. I love to pass on what Ive learned, and continue to learn.

    Nurturing Creativity, One Stamp at a Time

    Sage Kimble
    Independent Stampin Up! Demonstrator
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