7 Creative Ways to Use Your Altenew Press Plates for Crafting

Last Updated: August 30, 2023

Paper crafting is a world of its own, full of endless possibilities to explore and experiment with. Delving into the captivating realm of paper crafting opens the door to a universe brimming with boundless creative opportunities. And when you're a crafter, every day is a new day to explore all the design ideas that tickle your brain! So, why don't we find creative ways to make the most out of our press plates? Join us as we explore seven creative ways to harness the true potential of the Altenew press plates!

Maximize your press plates!

Dainty Flower Garden Press Plates

What Are Press Plates?

In crafting, press plates typically refer to specialized metal plates used in processes like printmaking and embossing. They are used to create consistent and uniform pressure on materials like paper, fabric, or metal to transfer an image, pattern, or texture onto the surface.

Here are a couple of common contexts where press plates are used in crafting:


In printmaking techniques like etching, engraving, and letterpress, press plates are metal plates that have been etched or engraved with an image or design. These plates are then inked, and the inked design is transferred onto paper under pressure using a printing press. This process allows for the creation of multiple copies of the same design.

Embossing and Debossing

Press plates are also used in embossing and debossing processes. In embossing, the press plate has a raised design, and when pressure is applied to it, the design is transferred onto the material, usually cardstock, to create a raised texture. Conversely, debossing involves press plates with a depressed design, which is transferred onto the material to create an indented texture.

Press plates are often made from durable metals like copper, zinc, or steel due to their ability to withstand the pressure required for these processes. They can be highly detailed, capturing intricate designs that can be faithfully reproduced on various surfaces.

Create textured pieces

Floral Engravings Press Plates

Overall, press plates play a crucial role in various crafting techniques, allowing artists and artisans to create visually appealing and textured pieces.

Creative Press Plate Crafts

Press plates offer a gateway to elevating your paper projects with intricate designs, textures, and foil accents. Let's dive into creative ways to make the most of these press plates in your paper crafting journey:

1. Dynamic Backgrounds

Transform your paper projects by creating captivating backgrounds with press plates Use subtle and elegant letterpress designs as a textured backdrop for your cards, scrapbook layouts, and art journal pages. Incorporate foil accents strategically to add a touch of glamor and make your designs stand out.

2. Dimensional Die Cuts

Take your die-cutting game to the next level using press plates with your favorite dies. Cut your paper shapes as usual and run them through the letterpress process using the press plates. This will add intricate details and textures to your die cuts, making them truly unique and eye-catching.

3. Faux Metal Embellishments

Achieve the look of metal embellishments without the added weight! Simply apply foil to your paper using the press plates' design, and you'll have custom metallic accents for your projects. You can even switch it up using glitter paper for a shimmery embellishment! These faux metal embellishments can be used on cards, layouts, and even mixed media projects.

Achieve the look of metal embellishments

Must-have Gel Pen Set

4. Interactive Elements

Combine the magic of Altenew press plates with interactive paper crafting techniques. Create letterpress panels for slider cards, shaker cards, and pop-up elements. The combination of tactile designs and interactive features will leave your recipients in awe.

5. Embossed Envelopes and Cardstock

Make your mailings unique

Versatile Greetings 2

Add a touch of elegance to your correspondence by embossing your envelopes or cardstock with press plates. Whether it's a wedding invitation or a heartfelt letter, these embossed essentials instantly make your mailings feel unique and thoughtfully crafted.

6. Layered Collage Creations

Create intricate layered collages by combining various paper elements enhanced with Altenew press plates. Layer letterpress panels with different textures and designs to craft visually rich and tactile artwork. This technique works wonderfully for art journals, mixed media projects, and even framed wall art.

7. Miniature Gift Tags

Add charm and personalization

Golden Sunset Fresh Dye Ink

Elevate your gift-giving game by designing custom miniature gift tags using the Altenew press plates. These tiny canvases are perfect for experimenting with intricate designs and incorporating fun accents. Attach them to your presents for an extra touch of personalization and charm.

Here are some more tips to maximize your press plates:

  • Color Play: Experiment with colored cardstock, foils and ink to create dynamic contrasts that make your designs pop.

Experiment with color

Summer Dreams Fresh Dye Ink

  • Ink Blending: Combine ink blending techniques with letterpress designs for a soft, blended background that complements the textured focal point.
  • Embossing Powders: Mix and match embossing powders with ink for a multi-dimensional effect that adds depth to your designs.
  • Incorporate Stamping: Pair your press plate designs with coordinating stamps to create cohesive projects that blend different crafting techniques seamlessly.

Have Fun Crafting With Press Plates!

Press plates bring a world of inspiration to your paper crafting endeavors. With a dash of creativity and a sprinkle of imagination, you can transform simple sheets of paper into stunning works of art. So, gather your supplies, select your favorite press plate designs, and let the magic unfold in your crafting space. Your paper projects will never be the same again.

Need a little inspiration? Get ideas for your next project from the Altenew Blog. Happy crafting!


  • Altenew

    You’re welcome, Sue! Hope we’ve inspired you to make more projects with these examples. 😍 Keep crafting!

  • Sue

    These are beautiful projects! Thank you for all of the instruction and inspiration.

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