I got my Cuttlebug about a year ago, and I'm just beginning to scratch the surface of everything that you can do with it. Today I thought I'd share a tutorial for embossing aluminum foil. If you're looking for a tutorial to emboss paper with the Cuttlebug, click on this link: Cuttlebug Embossing Tutorial.
I used Reynolds Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil, but since it works best when folded into several layers, you could probably use a thinner/cheaper foil if you have one on hand. In the photo above, you can see a single layer of heavy duty foil. It has a nice deep emboss, as I folded it to go through the machine instead of running just a single layer through; however, if you rub your finger over the relief, it flattens out. To keep it from flattening out, you'll need to layer the foil.
I was using one of the wide rolls of foil and I ripped a section off the roll that was about 16 inches wide.
Then I folded it in half. Don't worry too much about the wrinkles. The busier your embossing pattern, the less you'll notice wrinkles.
I folded it in half again.
And then one more time to get it about the size of the embossing folder. At this point, it was 8 layers thick. You might be able to get away with fewer layers and still get a good relief, but I was more worried about getting the foil the right size for the machine.
Then I sandwiched it using the standard embossing order for the Cuttlebug: A spacer on bottom, B plate, then the embossing folder with the foil stuck in the middle, then another B plate on top. I ran the whole stack through the machine and it comes out with a perfect emboss. The 8-layers makes a really solid emboss. It won't flatten from simple handling or from running your finger across it. IT would flatten if you run your nail across it with the intention of flattening it (which would flatten a paper emboss too), though.
Next I decided to try and die cut the foil. I used some Cuttlebug shape dies (Labels and Such set) to punch out some shapes.
I used the standard die cut sandwich: A spacer plate on bottom, B plate, Dies, Foil, C plate on top. I ran the whole stack through the machine and it cut out cute little label shapes.
The nice thing about these die cuts is that they pinched together the layers of foil so they won't come apart without some serious fiddling. I might seal the edges with some mod podge or other glue, just in case, but they felt pretty secure.
These were so much fun to make. Like all embossing, it's such instant gratification, and then for it to be shiny and metallic too, you can't beat that. I can't wait to figure out what to use all of my embossed foil for.
Note: All of the embossing folders used in this post were purchased at Tuesday Morning and are Tim Holtz/Ranger brand or We R Memory Keepers/American Crafts brand.