How to Make Your Own Paper Crimper

Written by liz tomas
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How to Make Your Own Paper Crimper
The teeth of interlocking cogs create the crimping effect on paper. (mechanical gears and cogs image by patrimonio designs from

A paper crimper is used to create embellishments to paper. Crimped paper can be used to add dimension and texture to a card or used to embellish frames, boxes and tins. Crimping the edges of paper can be the perfect frame for an interior object or to draw the eye to a central figure or text. Using different paper will result in different effects as thicker card stocks hold the crimp better than thinner. Making your own crimper allows you to completely customise your products and create crafts that are truly unique.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 plastic cogs
  • 2 pieces of wood
  • Screws
  • Phillips Screwdriver
  • Washer
  • Handle

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  1. 1

    Screw the plastic cogs to one piece of wood using screws and a screwdriver. The size of the wood depends on the size of the cogs. Screw in the first cog, and then place the second cog so that the teeth are in the valley of the first clog. The teeth should not be flush to the other clog but there should be a space where the paper is fed through. Once you have found the proper orientation of the second cog, screw this into place. Do not tighten the screws completely as the cogs need to be able to rotate. Cogs that are very long will require a shaft that runs down the centre of the cog. Screw the shafts in place to secure the cogs.

  2. 2

    Screw in the other sides of the cogs to a second piece of wood. Make sure that both cogs are even and are screwed in the same distance as the first piece of wood.

  3. 3

    Remove one securing screw from one of the cogs. Place a washer down. Thread the removed screw through a turning handle, and reinsert the screw with handle into the block of wood securing the cog. Tighten the screw enough so that when the handle is turned, it in turn will cause the cog to rotate.

Tips and warnings

  • The placement of the cogs is crucial. When they are properly aligned, the turning of one cog causes the second cog to turn as well. Once the paper is inserted, it is drawn through the cogs and crimped. The size of teeth in the cogs dictate the type of crimp produced.

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