What Is Fussy Cutting in Card Making?

If you spend any time reading card making blogs or paper craft blogs, you’ve probably come across instructions to “fussy cut” around this or that element as part of the project instructions.

Fussy cut?


What exactly does that mean, anyway?

“Fussy cutting” is a relatively new buzzword phrase that has gained popularity since die cutters have gone mainstream with the paper crafting public. Nowadays, people who own die cutters tend to use them as often as possible to save time and minimize the numbers of mistakes they make when cutting things out.

Die cutting is quick, easy and popular. In contrast, cutting with humble scissors and craft knives can seem fussy and old-fashioned. “Fussy cutting” simply refers to cutting using these “old school” methods rather than a die cutter.

Many card makers and paper crafters find that fussy cutting is still a necessary technique to know. Owning a die cutter can only take you so far, for a number of reasons:

  • There are many things you might need to cut out that do not have a corresponding die available.
  • Dies are expensive, so you might not always want to make the investment in every die set that’s available. There might be cases where you’d prefer to fussy cut rather than paying for one more set of dies. Dies are really the best solution for cutting extremely detailed shapes like grassy hillsides or scalloped lace borders. When really simple shapes are involved, there might be times when you decide you’d rather save the money and do your own fussy cutting instead of paying for the dies. This is particularly true in cases where you want to buy a stamp set that you’ll only use in one project.

So there you have it: That’s what people mean when they talk about “fussy cutting” or give you instructions to “fussy cut” this or that element in a project. Now you’re updated on what fussy cutting is all about. We hope this information is helpful to you as you learn more about card making and advance your card making skills.

Over to You: Your Take on Fussy Cutting

Do you prefer to fussy cut or die cut?

If you’re into fussy cutting, did I overlook mentioning anything important that people really need to know about it?

If you have additional insights you’d like to share, you’re invited to leave a comment in the comments section below.

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    Posted By: Amy Solovay

    This page was last updated on 3-5-2022.

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