30 Ways to use Cut Files on your Scrapbook Layouts

Hey Creatives!

How are you all? Gwen with you on the blog today, and I have something I’ve been asked about A LOT! I’m frequently getting messages for ideas on How to use Cut Files on scrapbooking layouts so I thought, why not give you a whole bunch of ideas to get you inspired! Cut Files really are so flexible and useful, which is why I love them so much! First up though, do you love FREEBIES? Make sure you sign up for our Cut File lovers Newsletters, I send two free designs every month, so you will want to jump on that! You can sign up here.

30 Ways to use Cut Files on your Scrapbook Layouts

Now, onto the ideas I have for you… I challenge you to give them all a try!

#1 As a layout title. Cut files make amazing layout titles that are super inexpensive and so so flexible. This design features the ‘You Are Special‘ cut file which you can grab for FREE here.

#2 Frame it! There are many cut file designs that feature frames. These designs are so great to work with because you have a ‘spot’ for your photos ready and waiting to go, who doesn’t love that! This balanced layout structure is a personal favourite. ‘Roses and Frames‘ design.

#3 As a repeating pattern. This ‘Smell the Roses‘ design has been repeated and positioned around the page for a really striking design feature. The roses direct the eye towards the centre of the page.

#4 Help document the details of your story. School photos can be tricky, years blend into the next after time. This ‘Grade School‘ cut file helps to document the details of the layout. By choosing pattern papers carefully, parts of the cut file design stand out and can really help the viewer quickly identify details in the story.

#5  Turn them into shaker pockets. Um… sequins, yes, please! For this page, I’ve cut the ‘Camera Beautiful You‘ design to fit the layout background. I’ve then backed with vellum and pattern paper and added sequins in between the layers to create a shaker pocket. So fun!

#6  White on White. There is something striking about a white cut file on a white background. This cut file ‘Garden Background‘ is a great choice as the extra detail in the design really set the page off. It adds real texture and interest that I just love.

#7  Double it up! For this layout, the large feature cut file (Floral Banner) has been cut twice, once in dark blue and secondly in white. The dark blue cut of the file acts as a shadow to the white design. It’s such a striking addition to this page.

#8 As a large background feature. The ‘Bows on Strings‘ cut file used here really creates a striking element on this simple page design. For interest, some of the bows have been backed in pattern paper, with others left open to show through to the background. A page like this is super quick to pull together.

#9 On a dark background. Placing white cut files over a dark or bold background adds a striking element to any page. The extra beauty of this technique is that no backing is required so if you are not a fan of fussy cutting, this tip is a winner. I’ve used the ‘Winter Wonderland‘ page builder file for this layout.

#10 Cut out of pattern paper. This cut file design has been cut from pattern paper. Not only does it add a striking element to the page, but saves time with no need to back it. Simply add to your page, add photos and a few embellishments and you are done! ‘Trio Flower Cluster‘ design.

#11 Be ‘punny’, it’s fun! The cut file ‘Brace Yourself‘ on this page is a fun pun that relates to the photos. It would also work for an adventure page, you can get really creative with your titles so go for it!

#12 Add a clean mixed media element – You can add all kinds of mixed media paints and sprays to your cut files. I love doing this and then adding them to a clean background for a clean mixed media look. For this page, I’ve added Distress Ink to several cuts of the ‘Celebration Flowers‘ files in various colours. I’ve added colour blocking for the embellishments and teamed this all with a black and white photo that pops!

#13 To help with your layout design. In this page, the cut file ‘Butterfly Garden‘ fills a large part of the page. When using files like this your design choices are limited, which actually helps pages come together faster. There are fewer embellishments required and limited photo positions available. This stops that shuffle I know you do (because I do it too!)

#14 Double Up! Using two different cut files on your page is double the fun! For this page, I’ve used both to help tell my story. The ‘Sunny Skies‘ design acts as a background and the ‘Summer Days‘ file is my page title.

#15 To add a bold feature title to your layout. Let’s face it, alphas such as ‘Thickers’ can be expensive, cut files give you a similar bold look at a fraction of the price. This ‘Traveller Background‘ is the perfect bold title for this vacation-inspired layout. I’ve layered it on top of the globe element from the same cut file and some watercolour inspired pattern paper for the win!

#16 To maximise negative space. This ‘Stitch Heart Geo‘ design was the perfect addition on this page to fill in the blank space of the background. These designs are also some of the easiest to work with as they simply need layering onto pattern paper. The paper shows through the design, no need for fussy cutting to get a ‘backed’ look!

#17 To reinforce your story. Every element on your scrapbook page should help you tell your story. In this page, the ‘Book Stack‘ design is a perfect fit for this photo at our local library.

#18 DIY inexpensive embellishments. The cut files in this layout may not be as noticeable as those in other pages shared here, but they are working just as hard. For this page, I simply cut out two leaf designs ‘Leaf Duo‘ and used them as a base for my embellishment cluster. Embellishments can be expensive so these leaf elements are a great option for those of us scrapping on a budget!

#19 To help create a scene. The photo in this layout was taken on a sailing boat, but you can’t really tell that from the photo, especially at first glance. The ‘Set Sail‘ cut file design really helps the viewer to get a feel for where the photo was taken, it helps set the scene of the photo to theme the page.

#20 To document small moments. This photo was just a quick snapshot, a silly photo of my daughter on her phone, but it tells a story of my Miss 13 and her love for technology. I love documenting the small moments in life as well as the big ones, it’s so important. The cut file ‘Chit Chat‘ I’ve used here expands on that idea, giving me a space for some typed journalling that fits in the theme.

#21 Use as a design element. Cut file designs don’t have to directly relate to your photo. More generic designs such as these ‘Quad Frames‘ are so versatile and can be used on so many different styles of pages. I’ve added them to this page as they help draw the eye to the central design elements and most importantly the photo.

#22 Go Monochromatic. For this layout, I’ve pulled a stack of a blue/green papers and elements in my stash to create this Monochromatic layout. I’ve mixed and matched the papers to back my ‘Happiness‘ cut file. It still surprises me just how few supplies you actually need when working with a cut file. They really extend your stash and this technique is a great way to stash bust!

#23 To document family holidays. Back from vacay and have a bunch of photos to scrapbook? Cut files can really help pull your pages together fast and give a consistent look in travel albums. This page features our ‘Makin Waves‘ design which has been coloured with watercolours. The waves in the design really fit with the Summer vacation theme and could easily be repeated throughout an album with a sailing or summer theme.

#24 To give your photos context. The ‘Conversation‘ cut file on this page not only acts as a wonderful background and base for my photos and embellishments for the layout but gives the photo context and helps tell the story.

#25 Add a repeated pattern. This ‘Speech Bubble‘ design has been cut twice to fill the centre of this layout. Many cut file designs can be cut out several times and then repeated on your page for a fun effect. Any repeated pattern can help your layout design feel more consistent.

#26 Colour blocking. Cut file are a great way to add clean colour blocking to your page. For this layout, I’ve used the ‘Intersecting Hearts‘ cut file which I’ve repeated down my page and then added a plain pattern paper to back them. This creates three blocks of colour which creates a base for my photos and embellishments.

#27 To document special occasions. I don’t know about you, but I find scrapbooking ‘special events’ so much harder than scrapbooking ‘everyday’ photos. The pressure to make the page ‘good enough’ for that special photo can seem overwhelming! This is where very specific cut file designs come in really handy. It doesn’t matter to me that I’ll possibly only ever use them once, they are so inexpensive it’s worth it to help me get that very special photo scrapbooked! Cut files used on this page are part of the ‘Christmas collection‘.

#28 Add Floral elements to your page. Flower embellishments can be expensive and can add a lot of bulk to your page. Floral Cut Files such as these ‘Lily of the Valley‘ can give that same look, especially when teamed with some fussy cut die cuts and layered leaves. I love that you can reuse these over and over and make them fit any scrapbook layout just by changing up the pattern papers you use to back them.

#29 Cut them up! You don’t have to use a cut file design as a whole element on your page. They are really great for chopping up and changing up the design. This file ‘Flowers and Frames‘ actually has two square photo boxes as part of it. I’ve chopped those off and used just the floral elements for this layout. Think outside the box and you can get several looks from the one design.

#30 To help you use up your stash. This layout is one from our KIT to YOU collection. These exclusive designs help you use up your stash with Step x Step instructions and a special ‘Shop your Stash’ section, so no going out for new supplies, you can use what you have! ‘Flower Band Kit‘. Find out more about KIT to YOU here.

I hope this list really helps to give you some ideas for creating with Cut Files, they really are so versatile!  Just one more thing before you go… Now that you are all inspired and have a stack of layout ideas to try, why not download our FREE Project Planner Template?

Why not print out a bunch and get planning!  If you’d love to have these in a pad format shipped to you, you can also shop them here!

Until next time,

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