Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Slice Digital Designer

Slice Digital Designer

My first response when I saw the video demo of the Slice Digital Designer was, "Oh! I have to have one of these!" But there's always that little cautious voice in my head that tells me I'd better get the full picture and investigate the downsides. So, investigate I did. There were lots of positive reviews, and I kept looking for the negative ones, but I couldn't find any.

This one little machine die cuts, draws, and embosses designs in just about any motif. And because it's digital, you can custom size the designs, so you're not limited to set pattern sizes. The digital aspect also means that there are less tools and gadgets to store – no box of templates and patterns. The Slice comes with over 11,000 designs, so you can imagine how much space it would take to store that many templates.

It's also cordless – a feature I find particularly useful for drawing on walls. (I never really got that out of my system.) And I love how compact it is. I dream of one day having a house with a huge room devoted just to my hobbies and crafts – they all seem to overlap. The stamping, scrapbooking, painting (on walls, of course,) always seem to come together in one massive project of intertwined media. Alas, that room is but a dream, but I still have room in my little hovel for this totally awesome craft tool. It takes up less than 6 square inches.

The Slice Cordless 3-in-1 Digital Designer is pretty easy to use, although like any crafting tool, it takes practice and some degree of work to achieve the exact result you're looking for. But then, that's part of the fun of crafting – the satisfaction of mastering a new skill.

Besides the machine itself and the power cord adapter/charger, the Slice Kit includes a design card booklet, a 6 x 6 cutting mat, 3 embossing tips, an embossing mat, drawing tips, a blade replacement tool, and some other free goodies like Tacky adhesive, a spatula tool, 5 replacement blades, project idea cards, and an assortment of 8 x 8 crafting paper.

The Slice cuts cardstock, vellum, vinyl, photos, paper of all sorts, and even fabric. The extra blades are a particularly good addition, since you'll probably want to reserve one just for fabric. (My mother's voice still rings in my ears: "Where's my good scissors?!" "You better not be cutting paper with my fabric scissors!")

The only two downsides to this awesome little machine are: 1) the cost - about $265. For most serious crafters, that won't be a huge deterrent. With the number of tools and equipment that the Slice replaces, it pencils out – even if you've already invested in all the other tools and templates that the Slice replaces. For beginners just starting, it's a great investment. But, for fairly skilled more part time crafters, the cost may be enough to make them satisfied with what they've got. 2) And this is a minor point – the Slice does require the accessibility to power at some point to at least recharge the battery. If you're an off-the-grid homesteader, you'll have to fit that into your power allotment schedule and plan accordingly.

About the Author

Dana Walker

Read more about the Slice Digital Designer.

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