Like most paper crafters, I have thin metal dies. My collection is not huge as I have limited space for storing of dies, of course, but I own dies. When I go to my local stamp store (Impress in Tukwila or University Village if you’re curious) there is a rolling cart with several storage bins on it that are filled to bursting with metal dies from several different manufacturers and on top of nearby shelving are the actual die cutting machines.
However, die cutting machines are not cheap and dies can get expensive. One of my favorite stamp sets of small Santa Claus chibis was $19 for 25 photopolymer stamps. The coordinating dies, however, were $35. I’m happy that companies like Memory Box try to cut down on packaging to help keep the costs down.
Also, like anything else in the craft world, designs come and go. Scrapbooking Made Simple brings out new dies every month and when they’re gone, they’re gone.
So here’s where we get to my pet peeve which really is more about how dies are used in crafting magazines and videos than about the dies themselves.
I have lost count of the articles and videos I’ve run across that are entitled, “How to make a fun paper box,” or “Making a moving slider card,” where step 1 is to die cut the interesting bit. What if I can’t get the die in question? What if I don’t have a die cutting machine? Why not just put that in the title? “How to use this die to make a fun paper box,” is perfectly fine and I know that this will include the use of a die that I may not be able to get.
Yes, I realize this is incredibly nit-picky of me, but I always get so disappointed when I come across a great sounding project only to discover upon viewing the article or video that it requires a particular die that I don’t have and either can’t get or can’t afford.