Embossing folders are a quick and simple way to add three dimensional texture to your cards and you can do this with a whole range of different materials, from plain cardstock to acetate. There are many different types of embossing folders on the market – some that give multiple levels of embossing and others that even cut shapes as well as embossing. In this feature I will be using standard embossing folders and embossing with a stencil too.

All the materials embossed on these cards require a standard embossing-folder sandwich of plates, but you can add shims – pieces of cardstock or folded paper – to increase the thickness of the sandwich to give more pressure and get a deeper impression if you wish. For these cards I have shown embossing altered to give different effects, but you can also add ink and paint to the folder before embossing for even more results.

Two of my essentials for accenting embossed cardstock are sandpaper and Nuvo Embellishment Mousse, both of which I used on the ‘You are my sunshine’ card. Lightly sanding away the top surface of ink-blended cardstock reveals the white core of the cardstock to help the embossed pattern emerge, and adding a light application of Nuvo Mousse gives a gorgeous subtle sheen to your design.

When embossing materials such as vellum and acetate, the pattern will show up white. This is because the pressure from the machine stretches the material to fit the contours of the pattern, giving the impressed design. This is a great way to achieve a parchment look in seconds, making it appear you spent ages gently stretching the surface to appear white.

However you decide to incorporate embossing folders into your cards, and whatever materials you decide to experiment with, have fun playing and adding texture to your projects. The additional texture achieved is fabulous for anyone who is visually impaired as they can feel the pattern you have created.


Place a piece of acetate inside the embossing folder and run it through the machine using the correct sandwich of plates


This is the result of embossed acetate, with white lines around the edges of the embossed areas. If you want this to be more prominent see Step 3


Use a paintbrush to apply a small amount of silver acrylic paint across the back of the embossed acetate (the side with the detail recessed)


Leave this to dry for a minute, then buff off the excess with kitchen roll