In the last couple of years, I have started using chipboard, rub ons, and plastic embellishments for a variety of projects and scrapbook layouts. I love the versatility of all these products and when I found out we were going to have the opportunity to review the new Grafix chipboard sheets, Clear Craft Plastic, and Rub-onz, let’s just say I was ecstatic! Grafix actually started in 1963 under the name of Ohio Graphic Arts Systems, and has since come a long way by continuing to produce new innovative art and craft products. They are well known for their outstanding customer service, competitive pricing, and have been honored several times for their support of United Way and their donations to various art and school programs.
I received three different amazing products from Grafix for this review. The first item was a package of chipboard and it contained two 4×6″ sheets, two 8.5×11″ sheets, and two 12×12′ sheets of acid free chipboard. All of the chipboard sheets were of medium weight so they were perfect for creating sturdy embellishments, chipboard albums or altered projects, and would also work great as layout backgrounds. The chipboard comes in a natural color, which is a great benefit because this allows you to dress it up however you desire! The chipboard sheets work great with paint, ink, and several other mediums, and their also great for distressing, sanding, stitching, and layering. The packaging states that the chipboard is compatible with most die cutting systems, however I do not own a die cut machine. Even though I was unable to try die cutting the chipboard, I did use a trimmer and a craft knife on the chipboard and found that it cut easily, so I can only imagine the possibilities.
The second product I received was a package of four 8×8″ acid free clear plastic craft sheets. The sheets came with a blue liner on each side for protection and they are offered in two different sizes of thickness, .020″ like the sheets in my package, and .007″ which would be great for card and tag making. Grafix also offers the craft plastic in several other sizes like: 4×4′, 6×6″ 8.5×11″, and 12×12″, and all are available in packs of 4 or 25. These crystal clear sheets are perfect to use as is for making albums, clear layouts, or wall hangings. They are thin enough to cut with scissors or a die cutting system and offer the crafter a unique way to create transparent embellishments. You can decorate them with paint, alcohol inks, markers, paint pens, or dress them up by adding paper, glitter glue, stickers, etc.
Last but not least, is the product I was most excited about playing with – a package of Rub-onz to create my own rub-on transfers! It contained four 8.5×11 sheets of Rub-onz film and four 8.5×11″ sheets of adhesive film. The rub-onz are also offered in packs of 10 and 25.The Grafix rub-onz sheets are acid free and allow you to easily create your own rub-on transfers in a short amount of time. To create your rub on images, you can use rubber stamps, draw your own, or simply print your images or text on the rub-onz film. Afterwards, you apply the adhesive sheet, let it sit for 10-15 minutes, and then peel off the back and transfer it onto whatever surface you desire. You can use them on a variety of surfaces like paper, chipboard, glass, wood, transparencies, and more. Rub-ons are one of my favorite embellishments and I’m not sure what could be better than being able to design my own!
I recently created a new topper for my blog and thought it would look really cool printed out as a rub-on. I cropped the image in my photo editing software and then printed it out onto a Grafix Rub-onz sheet. I added the adhesive sheet to it, and after waiting the suggested length of time for the adhesive to bond efficiently with the picture, I trimmed the entire piece and then transfered it onto a sheet of white textured cardstock. I cut the chipboard rectangle from one of the 8.5×11″ chipboard sheets and then colored it with a metallic crayon. Afterwards I dabbed a light blue paint all over it and smeared it into the crayon with my fingers. I then adhered the rub-on image piece to the chipboard sheet with glue dots to add extra dimension. I matted the whole thing with another sheet of white cardstock, distressed the edges, and then used my crop a dile to punch holes through the top of the chipboard. I cut 2 more chipboard rectangles, punched holes in them and binded them all together with book rings. Now I have the perfect little chipboard book to store all my crayon techniques in and I can add other papers or more chipboard whenever needed.
Cardstock (Prism Prismatics)
Crayon (Crayola Metallic Crayons)
Paint (Ranger Paint Dabber)
Glitter Pen (Sakura)
Book Rings & Ribbon (Personal Stash)
Adhesive (Adhesive Tech, Permanent Bond Glue Runner)
On my second project, I decided to use one of the 12×12″ Grafix chipboard sheets as the background for my layout. Since I already love the color and look of natural chipboard, I simply added a little paint and pen doodling to dress it up a little. I placed a smaller piece of white cardstock in the middle of the chipboard and designed the rest of the layout on it. The picture of my daughter Charlie is actually a rub-on that I created using the Grafix Rub-onz and I was thrilled with how it came out. I printed out the picture of Charlie onto the rub-onz film, added the adhesive film, then trimmed around her face and mickey ears and adhered her to the white cardstock. I then created a title rub -n to match and I was amazed at how easily the rub-onz transfered. I added some journaling and then stuck mini glue dots all over the page and covered them with silver glitter to compliment the whole magical theme of the project.
Cardstock (Prism Prismatics)
Paint (Ranger Paint Dabber)
Glitter (Personal Stash)
Pen (Staedtler Triplus Fineliner)
Font (Wilderness downloaded from Internet)
Adhesive (Adhesive Tech, Permanent Bond Glue Runner, & Zots)
Since the rub-onz film worked so well with my pictures, I thought it would be cool to turn one of my recent butterfly photos into a rub-on and create a sun catcher using the Grafix Clear Craft Plastic. I used a butterfly picture to create a large rub-on and simply transfered it onto one of the 8×8″ sheets of craft plastic. For the most part, the picture was easy to transfer, however with this piece I had quite a few air bubbles that I could just not get rid of no matter how hard I tried. I had printed the photo out in mirror image an intended to use the other side, but with all the air bubbles it looked better on the opposite side of the plastic. My only advice to help avoid air bubbles is to go really slow when you are attaching the adhesive rub-onz film to the printed rub-onz film sheet. Lucky for me, I was using a picture of a butterfly and it almost looked more like dew drops rather than air bubbles. I did find that pairing the clear plastic with the rub-onz image produced a beautiful transparent picture and would be an awesome technique to include in mini albums made just with the craft plastic. After I transfered the picture, I realized I had trimmed the photo a little too much and had some open space on the sides of the plastic. To my surprise, I was able to trim off the excess plastic by placing it in my trimmer. I also thought the plastic was easy to punch holes in. To complete the sun catcher, I added a some journaling and ribbon so I could hang it in my window!
Clear Craft Plastic (Grafix)
Paint (Ranger Paint Dabber)
Ribbon (Fancy Pants)
I had a blast working with all the Grafix products, but I was especially pleased with the results of the rub-onz. It did take a little investigating to make sure I had correctly identified the rub-onz film from the adhesive film, however both of the films have a protective covering so if you just find the one that has an adhesive side by peeling back a small corner, you can easily tell which film is which. The instructions tell you to be sure and print on the rough side of the rub-onz film, and even though both sides feel quite smooth, the frosted side is slightly rougher and the correct side on which to print. I experienced a little trouble with air bubbles while adhering the rub-onz film to the adhesive film sheet, but for the most part they came out great and it was not enough to keep me from wanting to use this product again. Since you can stamp or draw your images on the film, I made sure to save every last scrap of it after printing and trimming my photos. I printed 3 fairly large pictures for my projects yet I still have quite a bit of the rub-onz film to work with. The clear craft plastic was great and I really liked the thickness of each sheet, it just made it so easy to work with! I already have plans for using up the rest of my chipboard and can’t wait to try out more of the Grafix products. Each of these products promote creativity and I would encourage other crafters and scrapbookers to give them a try!