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Hot Foiling Tips And Ideas

Paper crafting has been my passion since I was a child. I love sharing paper projects, ideas, and products. Get more from your paper.


Foiling Basics-Where To Begin

If you want to foil cards and embellishments for your papercraft projects, you have options to consider depending on your budget. There are machines that help you achieve beautiful, foiled images. But there are additional purchases in supplies and tools that come with these machines. Only you can decide which system is right for your needs.

There are just a few things to know and understand about foiling so that you can get the most out of the products and supplies you have to create amazing projects.

Toner Foiling

Most folks have an inkjet printer in their homes. That is a printer that uses a cartridge filled with liquid ink. The liquid is spread out to create an image.

A laser printer on the other hand, uses a powder to create the image. Foils will stick to the powder, but not the dry ink. The powder is a plastic material that is dry when the image is produced. Then when you put it through the laminator, the heat makes the plastic liquid again and the foil sticks to that liquid.

So, if you have a laser printer, you are ready to go and create some foiling projects. If you are like me, you are not ready to commit to an additional printer, so we will show you how to foil without the expense of buying a second printer.

What You Would Need

  • If you have a laser printer, all you need is a laminator
  • If you do not have a laser printer, you would need a laminator, toner sheets and or designer card fronts, transfer gels, foils, and stencils.

Preprinted Toner Sheets

If you do not have a laser printer, you can purchase preprinted toner sheets, usually in sets. With these sheets, all you have to do is cover the sheet with foil and run it through a laminator. They come in different sets like backgrounds, sentiments, images and more.

Toner Foils

When you are using toner sheets or designs, you want to make sure that you are using toner foils for the best results. These foils often come in both sheets and rolls.

Toner Inks

There are toner inks that you can use with your stamps to create stamped images that can then be foiled. You must, however, use a semi-gloss paper rather than card stock or the paper will rip. This technique works om images, but not sentiments.

Foiling With A Laminator

One of the most popular techniques is foiling with a laminator. The thing to understand about using this form of foiling is that you cannot use an inkjet printer to create a project with the laminator on heat foil. You must use a laser printer. Inkjet images will not work.

Hot Foiling Foils

The difference between toner foiling and hit foiling is that hot foiling has adhesive built into the foil sheets. There are many companies that sell hot foil machines and foils.

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  • Todo is a Uk company.
  • Couture Creations Go Press And Foil and machine
  • Spellbinders Glimmer made to be used with the Spellbinders Glimmer System
  • Gemini Foils-There are actually two that are boxed alike and look very similar. One is for papercraft, and one is for multiple surfaces. Be sure when you are purchasing them, you get the right one for your project.
  • They are made to be used with the Gemini Foil Press System
  • Foil Quill Foil-Comes in a very large roll as well as sheets
  • Blue Bonnet is A USA company that sells on their Facebook site

Hot Foiling Machine Basics

The hot foiling machine is a two-step method of foiling that has become very popular. The image is impressed with the foil onto the paper by means of a hot foil press. Then a die cut machine is used to permanently impress the image onto the paper.

Hot foiling is a process that involves creating an impression on a surface using thin metal hot foil plates and special foil sheets The combination of heat (from the hot foil machine) and pressure (from the die-cutting machine) helps create a beautiful, shiny, metallic design,

A hot foil machine heats the hot foil die plate so this can transfer the image or design onto a surface. The shiny pigment from the thin hot foil sheet adds that much-needed metallic color to the plate’s design as it gets impressed onto the surface of cardstock, paper, or fabric. A die-cutting machine is needed to add more pressure. Running the hot foil platform, a couple of times through a die-cut machine helps push the plate’s design into the surface more. This will ensure that the whole design gets transferred without any missing spots.

The die cut machine must be compatible with the hot foil machine. So, if you are thinking about foiling, you will want to consider what will work with the dir cut machine you may already have.

At first glance, a hot foil plate looks much like a wafer-thin die. But instead of actually cutting into the foil or paper, the plate allows you to press the foil into the paper creating the design. Some plate designs coordinate with other of the same design or theme like stamps, stencils and dies.

Ways To Use Hot Foils In Your Paper Crafts

Investing in a hot foil system an investment. Besides the machine, accessories, foils and plates you will have invested a craft budget. So, you want to make sure that you get the most out of the products that you buy.

Even with a laminator system, you will be buying toner sheets, foils, printed toner designs and more. So, you will want to get the most out of your system. Here are some tips and ideas to get the biggest use out of your craft dollar spent.

  1. Use it for your home decor. Adding a little foiling to your home decor to add interest no matter what design theme you chose.
  2. Add some shiny metallic features to your scrapbook pages. Use it for your titles and embellishments to create dimension and interest to your layouts.
  3. Create foil DIY gift tags. Holiday gift tags are always a nice touch to your gift wrapping
  4. Add a foiled sentiment to your greeting cards. Both on the outside and the inside, foiled sentiments are an exciting touch to any card.
  5. Create a masculine fell to a card with simple geometric shapes
  6. Add foiled elements to a bullet journal
  7. Foil a bookmark to use or add to a book gift
  8. Add foiling elements to a junk journal
  9. Add foiling elements to simple wedding invitations

What Kind Of Projects Can You Foil

There are so many projects that you can craft foil. Here are some of our personal favorites:

On Greeting Cards

  • Create a beautiful background to a handmade card
  • Make a beautiful background on a handmade card
  • Use geometric designs for masculine cards and projects
  • Make a foiled card sentiment

On Scrapbook Pages

  • Create a foiled title for a scrapbook page
  • Add foiling to flowers and other embellishments

Other Craft Foiling Projects

  • Make some foiled gift tags for any occasion
  • Create foiled leather earrings and other jewelry projects
  • Make custom wedding invitations
  • Add foiled elements to your bullet journal

What Materials Can You Use Craft Foil On

The first material that would come to mind is of course paper. And that has been the most popular material to foil. But craft foiling goes far beyond that.

With A Foil Quill

There are many materials that the freestyle foil quill can craft foil on because you can craft foil freely. But the options do not stop there. You can foil on fabric with a foil quill that is used with a Cricut or other electronic cutting machine.

Why not add foil to your vinyl projects? Since many folks like to work with vinyl, why not consider adding craft foil to your custom vinyl projects?

Leather is another great option. You can cut leather or faux leather with many of these cutting machines so< why not add a touch of foil to your creations?

I will bet that you never considered foiling wood. Machines like the Cricut Maker will actually cut very thin wood. So, it is possible to add foil to a wood project. Or you could use the Freestyle Pen to work on wood projects.

With A Hot Foil System

Materials can vary from system to system, but here are some generalized items you can foil with systems like the Glimmer Hot Foil System and The Gemini Hot Foil system:

  • Cardstock
  • Chipboard
  • Fabric
  • Leather
  • Ribbon
  • Watercolor Paper

When you are considering a machine system, always make sure to research the item to make sure that it will fit the kinds of materials you like to use

How To Foil With A Laminator

You can create custom foiled projects with just a simple laminator

You can create custom foiled projects with just a simple laminator

Laminator Basics

For most hot foil techniques, you will need to use a laminator if you do not have some kind of hot foil system. There are different types of laminators with different features and sizes. You can decide the type of laminator depending on your specific needs. Price will be dependent on the features that you want and the size that you need. If you are just going to use the laminator for foiling, you can purchase a simple one for somewhere between $30-$40. If you want to use the laminator for other home or offices uses, you can get a unit with additional features.

For hot foil projects, you would either use a toner sheet that can be plain or in a design. The toner sheet and the foil are run through the laminator in a parchment paper pouch. Then the foiled toner sheet can be cut with a die cutting machine or a punch, The heat from the laminator bonds the foil to the toner sheet.

Some toner sheets have designs such as card front designs built into the toner sheet. the foil is then placed over the toner sheet and run through the laminator. You then have an instant card front design. Again, a parchment "envelope" is placed over the project.

Another way to use a laminator with foil is to use a transfer gel. These most often are used with stencils. The stencil is applied to cardstock. The gel is rubbed onto the stencil and allowed to cure preferably overnight. Then the foil is placed over the cardstock and run through the laminator. Parchment is used to protect the parchment.

If you want additional features, you can expect to pay a bit more for your laminator. A basic laminator is fine for most foiling techniques.

No matter if you have a laser or an inkjet printer, you can use a laminator with your craft foil without using gel medium or toner sheets. Yes, you need to get a laminator. But in the long run, if you enjoy foiling this will be a cost saver.

Remember, you must allow the laminator to heat for about 15-20 minutes before you use it. Otherwise, you will not get the expected results. With laser-printed images, the heat from the laminator reactivates the toner so the Deco-Foil sticks to the toner just as if you used an iron on the surface.

For inkjet printers, the process is slightly different. You need to use a glue pen or any other glue that remains tacky when dry. You apply the glue to the image where you want the craft foil to be visible. Then you let it dry. Place the craft foil on the image where you want it. Then use the laminator. (you could also use a hot dry iron)

No matter which printed image you use, you must always place a piece of parchment paper over the image before it is laminated. If you forget the parchment paper, the glue or toner could melt onto the carrier rollers and damage the laminator. I like to run the image through the laminator twice just to make sure that the craft foil adheres to the image,

What To Look For In A laminator


If you are just doing occasional laminating for craft foiling, then speed probably is not too important. But if you are planning to use the laminator for other paper projects for home or office projects, then you may want to look at the speed of the machine you are looking at.


Most paper projects are not too large, but size can be important if you want to foil larger projects. Chose the size that is right for your projects. Go the larger size if you have the choice. That gives you more options for future projects.

Paper Jam

Would be a feature that you should consider. Removing projects can be a messy situation. Paper jam features make your life easier if the unexpected happens.

Temperature Settings

Sometimes you can get better results with the option of changing your temperature settings. You can keep it simple or have the option. It is up to you.

Automatic Shutoff Feature

This is one option that you defiantly should consider. It is a safety option that can be important if you get distracted and forget to turn the laminator off.

Basic Laminator Foiling With A Laser Printer

As long as you have access to a laser printer, you can create foiled images with just a few steps


  • Laminator
  • Cardstock
  • Heat Foil
  • Parchment paper
  1. Print an image using a laser printer on cardstock
  2. Turn on your laminator to the warmest setting
  3. Cut a piece of foil large enough to cover your image
  4. Lay the foil on top of the image with the colored side (shiny) up
  5. Once the laminator is ready, slide the cardstock with the foil through the laminator
  6. Once the cardstock has gone through the laminator, carefully peel off the foil sheet.

Remember to always follow the manufacturer's directions for your laminator to get the best results

More Laminators Foiling Ideas

Complete Laminator Package

The Minc Foil Machine has features that are different from most laminators

The Minc Foil Machine has features that are different from most laminators

Difference Between A Minc And A Laminator

The Minc machine is a foiling machine marketed under the Heidi Swapp brand. They come in different sizes, depending on your needs.

You print your image/design with a laser printer and then lay your foil over the top, place the foil and image into a transfer folder and run through your Minc Machime. The Minc is like a laminator, but you can control the heat by the settings and the Minc has several rollers to control the pressure when it goes through the machine.

The smallest machine has a 6.5" opening. The largest Minc has a 13 " opening which is perfect if you want to do a lot of foiling for projects like scrapbook pages.

The major difference between a laminator and a Minc machine is in the rollers. Both machines heat the project. But with the Minc machine there are a top and bottom roller that also squeeze the project as it is going through. So you get the heat, but you also get pressure too. The laminator on the other hand, does not use pressure.

The heat setting also affects the result of your project.

More Minc Information

There is a release button in the back of the Minc should there be a mishap or problem with your project. The release button stops the pressure and you can pull out the problem. Time to throw the project and the carrier sheet away, There is no fix when that happens

Other Minc Products

There is a toner ink marker available in the Heidi Swap Brand. It is made to be used with Minc Foil. It has three replacement nibs and is compatible with the Minc Machine. You can add personal touches to all of your products.

: First, write with the toner marker on the surface you wish to add foil. Second, place any color reactive foil (sold separately) over the writing. Third, run the foil through the MINC machine and voila! You have easily added the perfect, personal touch to your project.

Minc Foiling Ideas


Different Types Of Foil

There are just a few things that you need to know when it comes to crafting foil. Why would it be important to know the differences in foils? The fact is not all foils are comparable with all techniques. Knowing the right foil to use for your project guarantees you a higher success rate.

Textile Foil

Textile foil is a thicker foil that is made for garments, but also gives perfectly good results on paper.

Heat Foil

In this case, a significant amount of heat is needed to get the foil to transfer onto your project. Some popular brands in heat foils include Papercraft Foil Rolls by Crafter's Companion, Glimmer Hot Foil Rolls by Spellbinders, and Foil Quill Rolls and Sheets by We R Memory Keepers.

Reactive Transfer Foil

With this foil, not only will you be using heat, but also a reactive agent as well. The reactive agents could include specialized transfer gel, transfer paint, or ink toner, you can transfer foil onto your project. These foils are generally used with a laminator or a Minc machine. Some of the more popular brands include Heidi Swapp MINC Reactive Foil, Therm O Web iCraft Deco Foil Transfer Sheets, and Gina K Therm O Web Fancy Foils.

Adhesive Foil

This foil uses liquid or sheet adhesive to attach the foil to the surface of your project. The foils transfer onto the tacky surface in the shape or design of the adhesive. Prima's Rub-On Foil Sheets, Ranger Ink Foil Sheets, and Re-Design Decor Foil Sheets are just some of the foils available in this category

Cricut Adhesive Foil

This is a foil that is manufactured for the Cricut It is used exclusively with the Cricut Foil Transfer Kit. It uses pressure to apply the foil onto your project.

Craft Foil Tips and Ideas

Learn how to use watercolors with foils. Get tips and ideas

Learn how to use watercolors with foils. Get tips and ideas

This elegant, foiled holiday is a perfect way to send greeting to your friends and families

This elegant, foiled holiday is a perfect way to send greeting to your friends and families

All About Heat Foils

All het foils require a significant amount of heat to get the foil permanently adhered to the base material

What To Consider When Buying Hot Foil

Most manufacturers of hot foil systems will also have hot foils available. for the most part, you can use other hot foils as well. The only exception to that is the Minc System where you have to buy the foil specific to that system.

So, you may want to shop around and see which foils work best for you for the price.

Your first consideration when buying a craft foil should be the quality of the foil itself. You want to buy the foil that works the best for your projects. Buying cheap foil but getting bad results is not a good bargain.

The next thing to consider is how much foil are you getting for the price. You can of course figure out the cost per inch. In my view, rolls are better than sheets, because you can cut the exact amount that you need on a roll verse more waste on a sheet.

Always figure in the cost of shipping if you are ordering online. Some websites offer free shipping if you order a set amount of product. If you are a prime member at Amazon, for the most part, your shipping is free. So, if one site is offering a better price, but shipping is high, you probably are not getting the best bargain.

Deco Foils

There are a lot of different craft foils on the market. Probably, the most well-known and appreciated is called Deco Foil. Deco Foil is a trade name for the foiling paper made by Therm-O-Web. It is a thin, shiny craft paper with a distinctive metallic look.

Originally it was made to be used with a transfer gel medium which can be a bit on the expensive side, but well worth it.

They can be bought individually or in bundles on Amazon. Generally, the bundles are a better buy

Paper Craft Foil Rolls By Crafter's Companion

  • Rolls are sold in individual rolls.
  • Rolls are 12.6cm in width and contains 5 metres.
  • Priced at about $4.95 per roll

Glimmer Hot Foil Rolls By Spellbinders

You can purchase these as single units or in bundles four

  • The roll contains 5 inch x 15 feet of foil
  • Average price $7.43

Foil Quill Rolls And Sheets By We Are Memory Keepers


  • Each sheet is 12 x 12 inches
  • The pack includes 15 sheets
  • Five colors with three sheets of each
  • About $18.95 per pack


  • 12" by 96" roll
  • Single color
  • About $8.67 per roll

Minc Hot Foil

  • 6" by 5" roll
  • Single color
  • About $4.99 per roll

Deco Foil Ideas And Resources

Crinkled Die Cuts With Foil

You can actually die-cut craft foil even though it is very thin. Craft foil is better when you handle it with care. Even the slightest touch can leave a mark on the foil. But that is no problem, you can still use the foil with this crinkle technique.

All you do is wad the craft foil in a ball with your hands. Then straighten it out and lay it on your die-cut plate. Follow the manufacture's directions for the die-cut sandwich for your machine and die-cut the foil.

Once you have cut the foil, be very careful when you remove the die cut.

One thing to note is because the craft foil is thin, it may leave a mark on your cutting plate.

Adding Color To Foil

You can add color to foil with your alcohol markers. You can use partial coloring or color the whole thing. This is fun with foiled die cuts. You can custom them using any color you like.

Using A Laser Printer With Deco Foil

If you have a laser printer, using craft foil becomes very easy. You actually do not need any transfer gel medium at all.

Steps To Using A Laser Printer With Deco Foil


  • Deco foil
  • Printed image from the laser printer
  • Parchment paper
  • Dry iron or an Easy Press
  1. Print the image that you want to add Deco-Foil
  2. Lay the Deco-Foil, color side up, where you want the foiling to occur.
  3. Cover the entire image with a piece of parchment paper.
  4. . Iron over the image with a hot, dry iron.
  5. Allow the paper to cool and remove the parchment paper and the excess Deco-foil.

The Foil Quill Free Style Pen

The Foil Quill Free Style Pen has the different tips. You can buy them individually or as a bundle, The magnetic mat is an accessory as a separate purchase

The Foil Quill Free Style Pen has the different tips. You can buy them individually or as a bundle, The magnetic mat is an accessory as a separate purchase

Using A Foil Quill Pen

There are two kinds of option when it comes to using a foil quill. There is a free style which works anywhere and a foil quill which is attached to an electronic cutting machine.

Free Style Foil Quill

The Free style Foil Quill Pen allows you to foil anywhere you please. No machines needed beyond the pen. the Freestyle Pen is a specialized heat pen that allows you to put tip to foil and add shining designs.

Available in four tip width options - standard, fine, bold, and calligraphy - you can foil on a wealth of various surfaces including acetate, plastic, wood, leather, and more.

Just a few steps to use this amazing tool:

  1. Plug the pen's power cord into a battery back, computer USB port, or other USB power source. The light at the end of the pen will turn on when it's connected to a power source and your pen will begin heating up.
  2. Choose your material or the surface you want to foil on and pick a brilliant color of foil.
  3. Place your foil on top of the material you're foiling and pull it taught, securing with low-tack tape or magnets (if applicable).
  4. After a few minutes, your pen is ready to create magic. Touch the pen tip to the foil and start writing or drawing to transfer the foil onto your surface.
  5. When you're done, peel the foil away to see your amazing foiled creation

Foil Quill

Designed to be used in place of the pen or blade of many popular Cricut, Silhouette, Sizzix and Brother electronic die cutting machines, this Foil Quill allows you to foil designs from SVG files on your computer. There are even hundreds of images available on special Design Drives that you can add in glimmering foil on all your projects!

You can purchase an all in one kit or buy each tip individually. The tips include a Standard, Bold, or Fine Tip versions for your machine.

The Foil Quill is compatible with:

  • Cricut Maker
  • Cricut Explore Air & Air 2
  • Silhouette Cameo 1, 2 & 3
  • Silhouette Portrait
  • Silhouette Curio
  • Sizzix Eclips 1 & 2
  • Brother DesignNCut
  • Brother ScanNCut DX, CM650WX, CM350, CM100DM, SDX125, SDX225, & SDX125i

Foil Quill For Electronic Cutting Machines

More Foil Quill Ideas And Tips

Some foil plates come with coordinating die sets that allow you to cut the foiled piece cleanly

Some foil plates come with coordinating die sets that allow you to cut the foiled piece cleanly

All About Foiling Systems

Foiling systems are an additional way to add foil to your paper craft projects.

Rather than using a laminator to foil, they utilize a twostep system.

The foiling system includes a platform and a docking station where the platform is placed to be heated up.

Foiling System Accessories

  • Silicone Cooling Pad-It is silicone-based pad where you can set your hot foil plates on to cool off. It takes about 5 minutes for the plates to cool down completely.
  • Tweezers-You can use regular crafting tweezers or stick to the special hot foil tweezers with magnets on them (these usually come with the machine). A good pair of tweezers will help you move or pick up the hot foil die plates while they’re on the hot plate, so you won’t burn yourself.
  • Acrylic Spacer Plate-This is a clear acrylic plate that comes with most machines but can be bought as an additional accessory. It helps create your foiling sandwich and adds extra pressure onto the plate and paper, just like how die-cutting plates work.
  • Shim-This is usually made of plastic, acrylic, or metal, depending on which machine you use. Like the spacer plate, it is an integral part of your foiling sandwich. If your hot foil plate has an intricate design, you can add a piece of cardstock as an extra shim to get better results.

The first part of the system is the hot foil machine. Much like die cutting, a sandwich is created. The parts of that sandwich include a special die (stamp) to foil, the platform of the foil machine, some shims, the paper to foil, the foil itself as well as some shims.

The component of that sandwich is heated on the platform of the hot foil machine.

Then, the platform as well as the sandwich, once heated, is run through the die cutting machine (the second part of the system). The die cutting machine takes that heated sandwich and compresses the hot foil onto the the pattern of the die.

It should be noted that not all hot foil machines are compatible with all die cutting machines. A lot of that has to do with the thickness of the hot foil machine platform fitting through the hole of the die cutting machines,

The Spellbinder's Glimmer machine has the largest list of compatible die cutting machines This is something to consider if you already have a die cutting machine.

Then, the second part of the system is the die cutting machine. Once the platform has heated the components of the project, the platform as well as the sandwich is slowly run through the die cutting machine.

The foil is then removed from the cardstock to real the finished project.

Hot Foiling Tips

  • Use a sand eraser to remove any excess foil from your project.
  • Never lift a foiling die that has been heated without tweezers
  • Make sure to crank the die cutting machine slowly as you run the platform through the machine
  • Foils can resist ink. So, you can stamp or ink blend over a foiled project
  • Use anti-static powder on your cardstock before using foil. It may help over foiling

Glimmer Foil System


Manufactured by Spellbinders, the Glimmer Hot Foil System has been one of the most popular systems on the market. The reason for that popularity is based on the fact that the foil machine is compatible with so many die cutting machines (the second part of the foiling system)

Glimmer Techniques

  1. Double Foiling-Just like when you use a stamp and a Misti and restamp an image where there is not enough ink, you can do the same with foil to ad more foil to a project. You can double foil your design provided you have secured your glimmer plate in place using low tack tape. This will allow you to re-position the plate in the exact same spot and foil again without messing up your entire plan.
  2. Mass Foiling-There are times when you need multiple images of the same design. When you are creating mass foiling projects, you can skip waiting for the timer button to heat up the plates for every new piece of paper you plan to foil.
  3. Offset Foiling-You can fix your foiling mistakes by foiling over the foiled piece with another color of foil.

The Glimmer Process

Each Glimmer foiling machine comes with two shims-a clear shim(plate) and a milky shim (plate) On thinner materials you, would use just one plate. Thicker materials like leather would use two plates in order to get the same results.

Glimmer Tips

  • Always use the correct side of the foil. The foil has to go with the shiny side up to get the best results. If you place it incorrectly, basically you will foil the glimmer plate (the foiling die). If that happens, you can use a product like undo to clean the glimmer plate.
  • Do not foil after embossing. The heat from the Glimmer Hot Foil system will re-melt the embossing powder and will mess up your embossed piece, plus the embossing powder might transfer onto the surface of your glimmer hot foil system. If you need to emboss your project, you need to foil first and then emboss.
  • Make sure to tape your plates and your foil to the paper. Much the same as when you die cut, you want to make sure that your plates and foil do not shift in the process. Use a low tack tape to insure the best results. Use a tape hinge to keep all the elements aligned correctly.
  • Once you have foiled a project, never allow any tape to get near the foiled cardstock. Any tape will pull the foil off your project, so keep tape away from your finished foiled paper projects.
  • With the Glimmer system, it’s more important to trim away any excess foil as it is more prone to over-foiling. If you do get some over-foiling, you can remove this with a rubber/eraser.

More Glimmer Ideas

The Gemini Foil Press

The Gemini Foil Press is made to be used with the Gemini Junior,. But there is a platform extender base for the larger Gemini Die Cutting Machine

The Gemini Foil Press is made to be used with the Gemini Junior,. But there is a platform extender base for the larger Gemini Die Cutting Machine

Gemini Foil Press

The Gemini Foil Press has become another popular option for those who want to foil projects. It is exclusively used with the Gemini die cutting machines.

you can foil on to a number of surfaces (cardstock, vellum, mirror card, acetate, leather, fabric and ribbon

You need to pre-heat the machine first and then add the media and set the time based on what media you are using - the size of the die and the material you want to add the foil to.


  • It has an automated time and temperature controls prevent any risk of your foil press overheating
  • The machine will switch off automatically after 25 minutes of no use

More Foil Press Ideas

Foil Machine Summary

Prices are based on prices seen on Amazon. Bundles may vary so decide what is the best price point for your budget

Foil MachineType Of Foil UsedNotesCosts

Foil Quill Freestyle

Heat Foil

Allows you to foil anywhere

$18 for individual tip-$72 for the complete kit. No additional supplies needed.

Foil Quill

Heat foil

Used with an electronic cutting machine

$30. There is a magnetic sheet that is an optional tool to use with your electronic cutting machine

Cricut Transfer Foiling System

Adhesive Foil

The system is pressure controlled, eradicating the traditional heat-controlled machines, making it safer than any other foil application approach. The system is fused with the Cricut Design Space, which facilitates a more user-friendly experience.

$22 for the kit. The only other supply that is needed is the pressure adhesive foil

Glimmer Hot Foil System

Heat Foil

Uses a platform that heats up which then uses a die cut machine to create the foiled image

$118. You will need a die cutting machine, foil and dies (heat plates) to create your designs

Gemini Foil Press

Heat Foil

Specifically manufactured for the Gemini Die Cut machines. It has a temperature setting, cool down and auto shut off feature

$155. You will need foil and heat foil dies to create your projects. This machine is only compatible with the Gemini Die Cut Machines. If you have the larger Gemini, you will also need an extender plate.

Heidi Swapp Minc Machine

Reactive Transfer Foil

To achieve beautiful foiled results, this system requires a reactive agent to transfer foil from a sheet to your project.In most cases, that reactive agent is toner ink but you can also purchase specialized transfer gel, transfer paint, and even transfer toner ink pensIn most cases, that reactive agent is toner ink but you can also purchase specialized transfer gel, transfer paint, and even transfer toner ink pens!!

$63-$115. You will need the minc foil and carrier sheets. You will also need a die cutting machine. You can use any die cutting machine that you have. As well as dies

Foil Transfer Products

These gels are manufactured by Thermoweb. They are used to transfer foils to paper without heat. They also use heat foil with a laminator, so we included this information for your consideration.

Transfer Foil Gel

This gel has an opaque white glossy finish Use with Deco Foil Transfer Foils or Flock Sheets. Compatible with most hot laminators

The Duo Gel

The duo gel works a little differently than the transfer gel. This gel works to transfer foil to paper using heat from a laminator, but also from pressure from a die-cutting machine. Transfer Gel DUO is a permanent transfer medium that dries clear and remains tacky for easy use.

Deco Foil Clear Transfer Pens

Simply hand-draw or stencil a design on your paper project, cover with foil and run through a die cutting machine or laminator!

TWC Hot Foil Gel

Package contains 2 ounces of hot foil gel that dries clear

I have seen a few other transfer gels on Etsy, but I have always had good results with the Deco Foil brand.

Using Duo Gel

Transfer Gel Duo

This is the easiest way to foil with the least number of extra products or machines needed. This is perfect for anyone who wants to try foiling. The gel is used with stencils. The Duo Transfer gel can be used in two ways. You can use it with a laminator, or you can use it with any die cutting machine that you may have. You always must allow it to dry for 24 hours before using it.


  • Deco Duo Transfer Gel
  • Stencils
  • Cardstock
  • Low tack tape
  • Spatula or palette knife
  • Laminator or die cutting machine
  • Craft mat or newspaper to cover work area
  1. Lay down the craft mat or other covering on your workspace
  2. Place your cardstock on the mat
  3. Spray the stencil with Pixie spray or use low tack tape to adhere the stencil to the paper on top of the stencil only
  4. Apply the Duo Transfer gel to the stencil. Spread it evenly across the stencil.
  5. Lift the stencil off the paper carefully like a hinge
  6. Wash the stencil right away in warm soapy water
  7. Allow the paste to dry for 24 hours

Using A Laminator

  1. Warm up the laminator
  2. Place a piece of foil slightly larger than the paper over it
  3. Place the sheet and the foil into a parchment paper pouch
  4. Run the pouch though the laminator

Using A Die Cutting Machine

  1. Place a piece of foil over the stenciled paper
  2. Place a piece of cardstock over the foil
  3. Create a sandwich similar to a embossing folder
  4. Run the sandwich through your machine
  5. Remove the foil from your paper

Other Tips

  • Do not use Pixie Spray for this project. The Pixie Spray will stick to the paste and you will not get a good foiling

How To Use Transfer Gel

How To Use Transfer Gel

Transfer gel is a medium that allows you to laminate foil without using a laser printer.

This is a great technique that uses stencils to create a foiled background. The one thing to remember is that you have to get the stencil washed immediately after use.


  • Craft mat or newspaper
  • Cardstock
  • Transfer gel
  • Stencils
  • Parchment
  • Laminator
  • Heat foil
  • Palette knife or old credit card
  • Washi tape or any other low tack tape
  1. Lay a craft mat or newspaper on your working area
  2. Cut the cardstock to the size needed for your card
  3. Lay the cardstock on the craft mat
  4. Lay the stencil over the cardstock
  5. Secure the stencil with low tack tape onto the work area
  6. Spread the transfer gel over the stencil. Make sure to get a thin even layer over the cardstock
  7. Immediately get the stencil and the palette knife into soapy water to soak
  8. Allow the transfer gel time to dry. It will be clear when dry.
  9. Once the transfer gel is dry, make your laminating sandwich. Foil over the paper with the shiny side up. Then parchment paper over the foiled paper. Place that into the laminating pouch,
  10. Run the project through the laminator following the manufacturers directions,

Transfer Gel Greeting Card

Transfer gel can be used with stencils to create foiled backgrounds. A laminator is used in this kind of foiling

Transfer gel can be used with stencils to create foiled backgrounds. A laminator is used in this kind of foiling

Apply Craft Foil Without A Laser Printer

More Transfer Gel Foiling Ideas

Foiled Greeting Card

Create a custom foiled greeting card with recycled lids and foils

Create a custom foiled greeting card with recycled lids and foils

Deco Foil Stencils

You can foil elements and embellishments for cards and scrapbook pages

You can foil elements and embellishments for cards and scrapbook pages

Black Toner Sheets and /or Black Peel And Stick Toner Sheets come three to a package

Black Toner Sheets and /or Black Peel And Stick Toner Sheets come three to a package

Deco Foil Black Toner Sheets

These are plain black toner sheets that do not have any adhesive backing. Each package has 8. 5 inches x 11 inches; 3 Sheets per package. These are used with the Deco Foil Transfer Foil in a laminator.

You simply cut a shape from your electronic cutting machine. Or you can die cut an image. Or you can punch an image.

  1. Place the image on a parchment paper folder.
  2. Cut a piece of foil a little larger than the cut shape
  3. Place that over the cut piece
  4. Close the parchment folder and run through the laminator with the folded side first

Tips: Remember to heat your laminator a good 15-20 minutes before using it. That way you will have the maximum heat you need to get a good foiling

Using Toner Sheets With Die Cuts

You can use toner sheets with die cuts to create foiled embellishments for your greeting cards, journals, planners and junk journals.

You can create layered flowers using your electronic cutting machines to make alternate cardstock and foiled flower layers.

Using Toner Sheets With Leftover Foiled Pieces

Another option is to use leftover pieces of foiled images from other foiled projects on toner sheets. There is no waste when using these leftovers on a piece of fresh toner paper.

Negative Foiling

Did you know that you can use the left-over foil sheet to create an additional project? You can actually get two projects from one sheet of craft foil. This is a great way to extend your craft budget and help the environment.

You can use this technique for any project you have made with either any laminated or Deco Duo Paste. You can also use the Deco or any other foil card fronts for the same technique.

Negative Foil Tips

  • Toner card front and prepared oil sheets work very well for this project
  • Preheat your laminator and have a parchment paper carrier sheet ready
  • Place the left-over hot foil sheet or scrap over a piece of black toner sheet
  • Run the toner sheet and scrap piece through a laminator
  • The left-over foil on the sheet will transfer to the toner sheet.

Tips On Negative Foiling

  1. Save all of your scraps for future use
  2. Keep some black toner sheets in your supplies
  3. Great for card fronts and sentiments

Deco Clear Toner Sheets

The Deco Foil Clear Toner Sheets come in designer patterns that allow you to add color with the foil of your choice. When using this product, you want to make sure that you lay the matte side to the foil.The foil goes on top with the shiny side up

  • 4 Sheet; 8.5 inches x 11 inches
  • Can be used clear for shaker cards or laser printed for foil
  • Can be die cut or used with electronic cutting systems

More Clear Toner Sheet Ideas

Peel Ans Stick Toner Sheets help you turn die cuts into foiled stickers

Peel Ans Stick Toner Sheets help you turn die cuts into foiled stickers

Deco Peel And Stick Toner Sheets

Deco Foil Toner Sheets are heat-activated transfer papers used to create custom designs and embellishments. Simply use scissors, punches, dies, or an electronic cutting machine to create any shape, layer with Deco Foil Transfer Sheets, and run through a hot laminator.

You get three sheets in each package. The sheets are 8.5" by 11" each.

There are regular toner sheets as well as peel and stick toner sheets.

They are compatible with most laminators and can be used with most of the Deco Foil transfer sheets.

Toner Sheet Tips

  1. Always wipe the toner sheet with a lint-free cloth
  2. Create a design using a punch, die-cut, or an electronic cutter from the Toner Sheet.
  3. Cut a piece of foil slightly larger than the design. Place foil, color side facing up, on top of the design. Place inside the folded parchment paper.
  4. Turn on the laminator, select the 5mil setting, and allow 10 minutes to warm up. When ready, insert folded parchment with the project into the laminator using the crease as the lead edge.
  5. Remove the project from parchment paper. Peel foil transfer sheet away from the design.

Note from the manufacturer: Due to the delicacy of designs, foil may not adhere to all the minor design details.

Toner sheets are available in different designer patterns

Toner sheets are available in different designer patterns

Deco Foil Clear Designer Toner Sheets

Each package has 3 81/2 by 11 sheets. There is one design per package.

There are two sides to these sheets. One side is smooth, and the other side is textured. The textured side is the side that you want to foil.

There are only a couple of steps to use these toner sheets.

  1. Heat up your laminator
  2. Place the toner sheet with the textured side up into a parchment paper laminating folder
  3. Place the foil (Must be heat activated foil) on top of the toner sheet
  4. Close the parchment paper folder
  5. Run it through the laminator with the folded side first


  • Heat the laminator 15-20 minutes to make sure that it is warm enough
  • Cut the sheets in half which will be the size of a card
  • Use a whole sheet to create designer scrapbook paper
  • You can fold the half sheet to create a clear card. Just add and embellish a small piece of cardstock for the front sentiment and a clear piece for the inside for the message.

Deco Toner Card Fronts

  • 6 sheets per pack
  • 4.25 inches x 5.5 inches designer card fronts (A2 size)
  • Use with Deco Foil Transfer Sheets for an instant shine
  • Printed on 80 lb. Kraft cardstock
  • Create one-of-a-kind designs using markers, inks, sprays and more
  • Create custom embellishments using your favorite punch, die cut, or electronic cutter
  • Compatible with most hot laminators
  1. Trim Deco Foil Toner Card Fronts to desired size or shape using scissors, dies or electronic cutting system.
  2. Cut a piece of foil slightly larger than design. Place foil, color side facing up, on top of the printed side of the toner card front.
  3. Place inside folded parchment paper. *For small pieces, place onto a piece of cardstock for support, then place inside parchment paper.
  4. Turn on laminator, select 5 mil setting, and allow 10-15 minutes to warm up. When ready, insert folded parchment paper with project into laminator using the crease as the lead edge.
  5. Remove project from parchment paper. Let cool and slowly peel foil transfer sheet back on itself to reveal your foiled design!

Minc Toner Sheets

Minc Toner Sheets And Other Reactive Agents

The Minc machine acts much like a laminator except for one difference. It has rollers to get a more even foiling. The rollers squeeze the toner sheets and the foil together, so you are more likely to get the results that you are looking for.

Minc Toner Sheets

These toner sheets were manufactured for use with the Minc foil sheets.

  • If you are doing a die-cut, foil first, then cut your die. You will have a better result doing it in that order. When you die cut first, some of the toner will flake off in the cutting process. You will get better foiling, if you foil first and then cut the foiled toner paper.
  • If you are using a Silhouette Cameo, use the settings Depth = 6 // Speed = 2 // Thickness = 33 // Double Cut*
  • If you are using Silhouette Double-sided adhesive or score tape, with the toner sheets, your settings would be-Depth = 8 // Speed = 2 // Thickness = 33 // Triple Cut*

Minc Toner Ink

Minc Toner Ink is used to stamp on cardstock much the same as an ink pad would be used. In this case, you would place some of the ink on a craft sheet or some waxed paper. You would then use a roller in the ink and apply the ink with the roller. Then you would apply the foil to the project and run the project through the Minc machine

Toner Pen

Create freehand designs with the Heidi Swapp ink toner pen. You create the design, add foil and run it through your Minc machine, Easy to do nd takes you to a new creative world.

Minc Toner Sheet Tips

Toner Sheets Ideas And Resources

More Hot Foiling Tips

No matter what system or machine you are using, here are some extra tips for you to get the best results. Give them some thought and apply them as needed.

  1. When you are using hot foils, you can overlap or add extra layers without destroying the layer below. This applies to most hot foiling machines. This idea is most often used when you want to overlap words in a sentiment or layering flowers.
  2. Use low tack tape. Low tack tape is used on foiling plates to make sure that they do not shift. That way you get the foil exactly where you want it.
  3. Double foiling is a step that adds dimension to your projects. You can double foil your design provided you have secured your foiling plate in place using low tack tape. This will allow you to re-position the plate in the exact same spot and foil again without messing up your entire plan.
  4. When you need to mass produce images like flowers or sentiments you can skip waiting for the timer button to heat up the plates for every new piece of paper you plan to foil.
  5. While you are waiting for the foil plates to heat up and foil, use the time to prep your next project. You can ready the next foiling project, cut a card base or stamp your project
  6. Same as with stamps and dies where you can do selective inking to do selective stamping and selective or partial die cutting, you can so selectively foiling. You can cover the first letter of a word with low tack tape. That way you can use a different font for the first letter. Any part of a foil plate can be masked.
  7. Offset foiling is another option. You can fix any mistake that happens in your project. You can decide to foil a piece once again over the original but use a different color foil this time. Shift the glimmer plate just a smidge to have a shadow show on the card.

Final Thoughts On Foiling

We have just basically scratched the surface on hot foiling. There are so many options for these techniques depending on your budget and the space you have available in your craft space.

There is so much that you can do with foiling. Just about any surface will allow foiling if you have the right technique and the tools to get the job dine.

Take time to consider your options. Look at all the pros and cons of each system and decide which one is right for you.

I do guarantee that once you start foiling on your paper crafts, you will want to keep going because the results are spectacular, even for a beginner. The variety of foils that are available will keep you wanting to create a lot of projects.

Enjoy the process. Happy Crafting!

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Linda F Correa

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