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A Cut Above: a beginner’s adventure in paper cutting

Earlier this year, deputy editor Elaine Bennett attended a workshop at Make, Do & Mend in Chelmsford, Essex to learn how to create paper cut designs. With the help of tutor Jo Nicolson and a sharp scalpel, she started her journey. Read an excerpt from issue 61 of PaperCrafter below to find out how she got on…

A Cut Above: a beginner’s adventure in paper cutting

Cutting out shapes with a craft knife from a piece of paper is one of those rare crafts which is relatively easy for beginners to try, yet quickly yields professional-looking results. For these reasons, it is the perfect subject for a workshop and as I, along with other eager attendees, settled round a large table at Make, Do & Mend in Chelmsford, we were all excited about starting. Tutor Jo Nicolson eased us in gently by giving us a sheet of simple shapes to cut round, giving us a feel for the process. Jo demonstrated the best technique for holding our scapels and also explained about which weights of paper and types of blade worked best. As newbies to the world of papercutting, our fingertips were a little soft and soon got sore. Jo was well-prepared and provided us each with a plaster so we could prevent blisters forming throughout the three-hour session. Once we had all mastered cutting out squares and rectangles and had got to grips with trickier curved lines, Jo demonstrated the potential of paper cutting by showing us some of the intricate designs she had created for her online shop. Feeling inspired and a touch humbled, it was then my turn to pick from three templates; a beach hut design, a rose bouquet or a butterfly…

Read more and see photos in the new issue of PaperCrafter, on sale now.

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