Fabulous Finds Friday — Evolution Revolution

Oh, my, how the Evolution die cutting machine has evolved!

The new and improved version, the Evolution Advanced, has several performance-enhancing features (and it still does letterpress — yay!). One thing I really love is the smaller footprint — the platform folds up so the machine is more compact, making it easy to store (you can also remove the handle.)

evolution 583 closed DSC_0570

I must admit, I found it tough to pull down the platform panels. But once I did, I found that the bottom suction cups (which become engaged when you pull down the panels) were nice and strong. And I LOVE the storage compartment in the platform.

evolution 583 storage DSC_0568

The machine still has all the features that make it a wonderful tool — it die cuts and embosses and is compatible with most other dies and embossing folders. The Evolution also has a letterpress kit, sold separately, but a valuable addition. I love the look of letterpress and am anxious to try my letterpress platform in the Advanced.

The Advanced has a new dial system that adjusts the height of the rollers, changing the pressure. The idea is that you don’t have to bother with a variety of mats (just the base plate and one mat). I found the dial stiff and hard to turn, but I’m hoping it will be easier the more I use it. The dial is supposed to eliminate the need for extra mats and shims, but we’ll have to see if mine gets easier to turn. Once I figured out the right dial level, the base plate ran through like a dream.

evolution 583 dial DSC_0573

One other cool option — a motor! Yes, you can buy a plug-in motor that runs the whole shebang for you. This will be a boon to anyone who has hand issues.

Here is a quick tag I made using the dies that come with the machine and an embossing folder I’ve had for a while:

evolution 583 tag DSC_0574

The Evolution was originally sold by Lifestyle Crafts, then by We R Memory Keepers, and now by American Crafts.
Here’s a good video that shows what the Evolution Advanced can do:

What are your thoughts on die cutting machines?

Thanks for stopping by!

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Pretty Boxes, Easily Made

I love boxes and I love this box making die from Lifestyle Crafts. It was fast and easy to create several boxes for holiday gifts.

This set features papers from Basic Grey.

boxes 519 basic grey DSC_0440

Here’s another, using paper from KaiserCraft:

boxes 519 kaisercraft wood paper DSC_0438

And check out the rosettes! (See, I promised I would do something with all those rosettes I showed in my last post!)

One other cool thing about this die is that you can also make an open lattice basket. Here’s an example of the basket:

Lifestyle basket 397 DSC_0321

Fabulous Finds Friday — Crafty News

Today, some news from the craft world.

We R Memory Keepers, makers of such great tools as the Crop-a-Dile, Envelope Punch Board and much more, has purchased the Lifestyle Crafts brand. Lifestyle makes the Evolution machine, which does letterpress, die cutting and dry embossing.

To celebrate, We R is having a giveaway. Check it out here.

Next week, I’ll show off some new dies. Have a crafty weekend!

Shameless Self Promotion

I have a fun project on the Crafts ‘n things blog site today — cute favor boxes made using Lifestyle Crafts dies.

Check it out at http://blog.craftsnthings.com/?p=8698

Thanks for indulging me! (And feel free to leave some love there … Grin.)

Fabulous Finds Friday — Multi Circle Die

Have you ever needed several circles for layering? But it’s so tiresome because you have to cut them over and over? This die cut from Lifestyle Crafts just made my life easier!

storage magnetic sttrip 423 DSC_0361

This die is so handy for making multiples. I often just cut out a bunch to have on hand. And if you just want one? A solo circle is included in the set. And here’s my other fabulous find: Magnetic strips for the inside of my closet door! This die was too long to fit in my die box, so I hung it on the inside of a closet door in my craft room. So handy. I like it so much, I may hang more of my most often used dies there! The magnetic sheets have a self-adhesive side and are really designed so you can make your own photo magnets. But this is a picture perfect use for me! I cut the sheet in half, peeled off the backing, and presto sticko!

And just so you know I really used the die, here’s a quick card:

tools lifesty stick project 422 DSC_0345

Thanks for coming by … have a great weekend.

Fabulous Finds Friday — Pokey Tool

Today’s Fabulous Find is this nifty tool from Lifestyle Crafts*:

tools lifestyle quickstick 422 DSC_0372

Pokey-tool, of course, is not the real name, but’s so descriptive!
The QuickStik has several uses: There’s a sticky piece at one end that lets you grab tiny pieces of paper, rhinestones, etc. And the other end has two pokey sides — one has a sort of chisel tip and the other is pointy. It’s great for poking out tiny pieces stuck in your die!

Here’s the pokey part:

tool lifestyle quickstick 422 DSC_0371

And the sticky end:

tools lifestyle quickstick sticky 422 DSC_0373

And a finished card:
tools lifesty stick project 422 DSC_0345

By the way … the die cuts are also from Lifestyle Crafts.

Thanks for stopping by … and have a Fabulous Friday!
(*see disclaimer. Tool provided by Lifestyle Crafts.)

Fablous Finds Friday — Die Cut Basket

I am crazy for this basket template from Lifestyle Crafts:

DC0458_Basket

(Do check out my fun Easter baskets that are featured as the Craft of the Day on the Crafts ‘n things website.)

What I like about his die set (besides the fact that it is stinkin’ cute) is the variety of baskets and boxes you can make with this one set. Here’s a look at the first set I made, just for practice:

Lifestyle basket 397 DSC_0321

Above is the basket, using all four of the lattice inserts. But you can use just one or two of the inserts and keep the other sides solid, or leave them all solid.

The set also comes with a cover so you can make a box:
lifestyle box solid 397 DSC_0324

I’ve been playing with a variety of paper to create more boxes and baskets, some of which will be featured soon at www.craftsnthings.com.
Have a wonderful weekend and thanks for hopping on over!