Learning how to make cards is something that will not only give you a hobby, it will provide you with a skill that will impress all your family and friends! Especially when you send them one of your handmade cards for their birthday.
One thing that irritates me when learning a new hobby or pastime is when people use jargon, industry related terms and abbreviations.
When you are starting out with something new and are finding your feet, and simply trying to work out the basics of any new activity, the last thing you want is to get bogged down and despondent because you don’t understand the lingo.
Trying to fathom out the jargon and what supplies you will need can take all the fun out of learning so I have made a list of the most common terms you will find when you are a beginner.
If you do not find what you are looking for here then please do not hesitate to ask a question in the forums which are checked daily.
Card Making Terms
Acetate is a thin plastic film that has many applications. You can stamp onto it using rubber stamps, use it for making shaker cards, and use it to make an image or embellishment appear to hang independently. You can also paint Acetate with glass paints and glitter glues.
Anything that is acid free is perfect for card making and scrap booking as it will not deteriorate or discolour. Acid free is simply a product that is manufactured free of acid.
Adhesive is something that is used to stick one material to another. Common craft adhesives include glue dots, glue sticks, double sided tape and photo stickers.
A bone folder is used for scoring and folding paper and card. It is a flat piece of plastic or bone which is pointed at one end and round at the other.
Brads have two prongs at the back which are pushed through the paper or card and then flattened to hold in place in much the same way as a split pin. Brads are available in a wide range of designs, shapes and colours.
A brayer is usually used to create backgrounds or to roll over two pieces of paper to help glue them together. A brayer is a roller that is soft and made of rubber.
Cardstock is a sturdy thick scrapbook paper which is available in many different thicknesses, weights and colors.
Cello Bags are used to protect your cards and often used when making cards to sell. They are made from thin plastic which is transparent.
Rubber stamps are a major part of card making and scrapbooking. They are covered in an ink or dye and used to print or ‘stamp’ and image onto cardstock. They come in many different styles, shapes and patterns.
Clear Rubber Stamps
Clear rubber stamps are usually used with an acrylic block, clear stamps can be positioned how you like, and can be mixed and matched with other stamps that you add to the acrylic block.
A corner punch is used for cutting corner shapes, usually to round off the corners of cards.
A craft knife is an essential item. It is a very sharp pointed knife that has replaceable blades.
A cutting mat is a mat that protects the surface you are working on and is used alongside a craft knife.
Decoupage is a technique used to decorate cards, where you build up a 3D picture using several pictures as layers.
Is a term that means ‘cut out shape’. The shape is usually cut from a metal template called a ‘die’.
Distressing is a method used to give your project an old and worn look.. This can be achieved in many ways including, stamping, crumpling, inking and tearing.
Double Sided Tape
Double sided tape is sticky on both sides and can either be flat or 3D.
An embellishment is used to decorate a handmade card or scrapbook page layout.
A technique used to create a raised image by heating embossing powder.
Embossing Powder is a fine powder that is available in a variety of colors. Embossing powder is sprinkled over a stamped image and heated to create a raised impression.
Eyelets are metal fasteners with holes in the middle. They are attached to cards and scrapbook pages. Once attached ribbon and fibres can be passed through the holes.
Gel pens come in many different colors and can be used to colour small areas in a precise color.
Glitter glue is glue that is already mixed with very fine glitter. Glitter glue is usually white and dries clear.
Glue dots are used to attach embellishments such as buttons or other heavy materials. They are extremely sticky and should not be removed once applied.
A heat gun is used to heat embossing powder
A technique where strips of paper are folded and overlapped to create a background in an aperture card.
A back lit box that is used with an embossing stencil. The light in the box transmits through the image so that it can be seen through card and paper.
Matting is also known as mat and layering. It is a technique where a layer of paper is built up to produce a frame around an image or embellishment.
Pigment ink is normally used for embossing because it is like a water based ink that dries slowly enabling the embossing powders to stick to it.
Rub ons are transfers that are applied by rubbing with a lolly stick. Once applied they are permanent.
A way of creating a line that can be used to fold a card.
Toppers or a ‘topper’ is basically like an embellishment. Card makers refer to a topper as something they will put on top of their cards. Toppers can really be anything such as an embellishment or decoupage.
The above terms are commonly used amongst card making enthusiasts. For a full breakdown of tools and equipment used by card makers then please see the article on card making supplies.