Hand Punch Design Ideas: Adding Texture

  • Difficulty Rating: Beginner
Punch Basics: Adding Texture

This is the fourth in a series on getting the most out of your basic paper punches.

Today we are going to focus on adding texture to your punched shapes. Punches are often used flat, but sometimes I just want to add some texture, detail, and interest. I will share a few of my go-to, simple techniques for adding a little pizzazz to punched shapes.

Running punches through a paper crimper

It doesn’t get much easier or quicker than running punches through a paper crimper. I especially love this technique on flower shapes. Simply insert the shape between the crimper’s rollers and crank the handle to feed through.

This adds a lot of texture and dimension in seconds

This adds a lot of texture and dimension in seconds. Layer four crimped flowers together with the corrugated design in an alternating pattern. Secure layers together with a large brad and gently bend petals up for even more dimension.


I love adding these flowers to all kinds of projects, like this photo frame for prom. Simply hot glue the crimped flowers to the frame.


To add specific detailed texture to a punched shape, my favorite technique is creating lines using an embossing stylus. I used this to bring these leaves (punched petals) to life by adding veining.


Place the punched shape on a piece of craft foam and carefully draw lines using the stylus. Be sure not to press so hard that it breaks through the cardstock. I used a ruler as a guide to get a straight line down the center of the leaves and free-handed the shorter, angled lines. These lines not only add detail but allow you to bend the leaves for extra dimension on projects.


To add more intense texture, a favorite product of mine is modeling paste. This puffy cloud was created this way.


The paste is white, but you can tint it with paint before using. Here I added a tiny drop of black to turn my cloud gray. Once you have your desired color, “paint” the modeling paste onto your punched shape (in a matching color so you don’t have to worry about full coverage) with a toothpick. Spread it around and add designs such as swirls with the tip of the toothpick. Be sure to work on a protected surface such as wax paper. Once you like the look, move the shape to a clean area of your surface using the toothpick to dry fully.

I challenge you to think of other ways to add a little texture to your punched shapes!

Supply List


Modeling Paste

Craft Foam