Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Scrapbook DIY: It's A Small World Die Cut

As I mentioned yesterday, I recently did another scrapbook swap.  For the title swapI selected "It's a Small World" for my design.  I had to make 26 pieces by hand using my paper cutter, scissors, paper punches and anything else I could come up with.

It took a little bit of creativity, but I did it!  Designing a title for "It's a Small World" was actually pretty easy since the ride is so geometric.  Would you like to make a paper piece for your own scrapbook?  Here's how I made mine:


  • White Card Stock Paper
  • Gold Card Stock Paper
  • Silver Card Stock Paper
  • Paper Cutter
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Daisy Paper Punch (I found mine at Michael's)
  • Small Circle Paper Punch (I found mine at ACMoore)
  • 2.5" Circle Paper Punch (I found mine at Michael's)
  • Silver/Gold Marker Pens- acid free
  • Gold Stamp Ink
  • Small World Clock Stamp (found here)
  • Adhesive (I used Elmer's Craft Bond tape)
  • Word Processing Software and a Printer
  • Extra Cardstock (for templates)
  • Sitckles or Glitter Glue (optional)

Step #1

1.) Design The Text 
Because I couldn't use my Cricut, I designed the text of my die cut with my computer.  I found a storybook font that looked close to the It's A Small World text.  I then made a few boxes for it in Illustrator.  I filled the text white with a thin gray outline.  Then, I printed them out on 8.5 x 11" white card stock.  (You can also do this with Microsoft Word or another word processor.)  Next, I colored all of the text in with metallic silver markers.  As I completed each sheet, I laid them out to dry so they wouldn't get smudged.  When they were finished, I cut out all of the boxes and set them aside.

Step #2

2.) Cut Template Pieces
Next, I cut out a few sample pieces so I could figure out my design.  It's easiest to create simple geometric patterns that are easy to cut.  My paper cutter has ruler markings on it so I cut out strips of 1" paper.  Then, I created 1" boxes.  I cut some in half, creating triangles.  I kept some of them as squares.  I paper punched a few silver daisies.  I set them off to the side in piles.

Step #3

3.) Create Your Design
Then, I started arranging the cut outs so they would be similar to the ride.  After playing around with the template pieces for a few minutes, I was ready to create my design.  I wanted to make it look similar to the entrance to both Magic Kingdom and Disneyland's It's A Small World ride.  It looks like a bunch of small buildings all attached to each other.  I ended up cutting out a few more pieces: 1/2" silver squares and small white circles made with a paper punch.  Next, I used extra card stock (from printing the text) to create "roofs" on top of the "buildings".  I hand drew the roofs and played around with a few styles before settling on my final choices.

Step #4

4.) Trace Templates
This is probably the most tedious part of the process.  Once I was happy with my roof top templates, there wasn't a quick way to cut them.  I literally had to cut the paper into strips and then trace each and every one of them.  However, I got into a pretty good flow and it passed pretty quickly while I was listening to music.

Step #5

5.) Create Clock Face
I used my clock face stamp to stamp more of the left over plain white card stock.  After stamping and letting them thoroughly dry, I used a large 2.5" paper punch to cut out the clock faces.  I probably could have used a 2" punch in order to not have a border, but I wanted a little room for error.  Take your time to make sure your clock is centered in the punch.  Otherwise, it'll look messy.  (Note: If you don't trust yourself with the paper punch accuracy, you could punch out the circles first and then stamp them.)

Step #6

6.) Cut Out Paper Pieces
Ok, I lied- this is the most tedious part of the process.  Once you're settled on your final design, you have to cut out all of the pieces- by hand.  This is why so many people have cutting machines to do it for them.  Luckily for me, I enjoy listening to music while I craft; it makes time go by faster.  I cut paper pieces for quite some time.  When I had enough of one, I moved on to another- resulting in little stacks of paper pieces!

Step #7

7.) Assemble Die Cuts
Here's the fun part- putting the die cuts together!  Now that you have all of your pieces cut, use them to make one final layout of your design.  If you don't like something, now is the time to change it!  I tweaked my design a little before I was happy with it.  Don't be afraid to experiment with layers.  It will give the buildings an authentic look!  Once your design is done, use your glue tape to carefully attach the pieces to your base.  I did mine in stages.  I added the roofs first; then I added the details and clock faces.  It was less overwhelming to split the process up.  Plus, I felt like I was accomplishing more, faster.  Before I knew it, the stack of completed paper pieces was growing!

Once everything is attached to your base, you're done!  Congratulations; you made a paper piece by hand!  The best part?  You can use this outline to create any type of scrapbook title of paper piecing you can think of!  The sky is the limit!  I absolutely love how these came out!  I'm happy I used sparkly metallic silver and gold paper for the details.  It really gives the paper piece the glittery look of the ride entrance!  I'm definitely making more little buildings for my It's A Small World pages.  °o°