Back when I was a child the only kind of paper punches you could find were for making little round holes to put paper into a notebook. Boy have times changed! Now there are paper punches available in all sorts of styles and sizes for many different uses. The most common use for paper punches is during the creation of scrapbooks and paper crafts, however the use of paper punches is not just limited to these fields.
The most basic type of paper punch is the hand punch style where there are two handles , like scissors, with the punch being at the end. These types of punches can range in size but generally come in 1/16 – 1/4” in size and are usually found in the shape of circles (holes), hearts, rectangles, stars and other small, non ornate shapes. Theses punches come in handy to make small designs on papers or cards. They can also be used to make personalized confetti allowing you to choose your own colors and paper type. However, I would recommend only making confetti this way in small batches as it can be very hard on your hands.
The lever type paper punch is perhaps the common punch used among scrapbook enthusiasts and paper crafters. These punches seem to be only limited in imagination. They can in both very small and incredibly large sizes and I have seen them in just about every shape imaginable! One advantage to using theses type of punches are that the punch can be a very basic shape, but it can also handle delicate or ornate type shapes also. For example, I have used punches in the shape of both butterflies and dragonflies and intricate flower designs all come our beautifully with little effort. These punches can be rather pricey sometimes, but because of their size and construction, are usually a worthwhile investment.
One of my favorite type of punches, which has become quiet popular in recent years, is the border punch. These types of punches are similar to the lever type punch, but usually have a fancy, ornate or decorative style. The punch is placed at the edge of the paper and when used correctly transforms the paper or card stock into a beautiful and customized work of art. The most common style for these punches are lace type patterns or a variation of a scallop edge. However, I have seen these in very intricate patterns too and even in embossing styles. One of the most popular designs is a pattern called “falling water” it is both simple and very functional.
It is very nice and handy to have a variety of punches in your home or office. You can always find something to dress up with a various punch, although I do recommend steering away from term papers and official office reports as this can take away from your credibility. However, sending out a simple handwritten note becomes a lot more fun and personable when using a punch to add a little whimsy, you can even add a few pieces of handmade confetti to give someone a little surprise when they open their envelopes. Even if you are not a scrapbook designer or a paper crafter, don’t think paper punches aren’t for you!