How do I Choose the Best Embossing Press?

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  • Written By: Mal Baxter
  • Edited By: Daniel Lindley
  • Last Modified Date: 15 October 2019
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An embossing press is a versatile device or machine that performs small cutting and pressing design jobs and larger-scale projects. It can come in sizes from handheld to stand-alone equipment, with many gradations in between. The first step in making the best choice of an embossing press, typically used in decorative paper crafts, metal crafts, and for official seals on embossed letters, is to understand your current use requirements as well as the many extended potential uses. An embossing press can cut and press pre-designed shapes, stamp monograms and letterheads, and also provide security against forgeries for certificates, art prints, or other important documents. Consider other factors such as price, durability, and space requirements.

Many design options exist for the multiple applications of an embossing press. When pressing images directly into paper or card stock, and cutting fine shapes easily or quickly for multiple sheets, quality, clarity, and ease of use come into play. Add new cutting dies for creative design possibilities, but bear in mind that some brands favor interchangeability more than others. Some projects need larger quantities or more pressure to function, and require either heavy-duty or electric presses. Smaller desktop units can be operated with a hand crank for increased power.


Whether crafting decorative card borders or creating a personalized stamp or official seal, an embossing press exists for practically every type of custom cutting or pressing job. These include hand plier embossers, which can be used with metallic seal wafers for attractive certificates and diplomas. There are small address embossers and single-lever machines for heavier grades of paper and bigger dies; these are typically composed of heavy-duty materials such as cast iron or aluminum. Today's consumer embossers for crafts come in colorful desktop designs and sizes that encourage portability and versatility.

While a desktop embossing press can handle thousands of documents, a freestanding unit is required for larger jobs. These heavy-duty embossers typically require operation by a foot pedal or hand switch from a seated position. They also offer many adjustable clamping forces and adjustable paper guiding, with a reach of several inches from the nearest edge of the paper to the center of the document, and assisting shelves or side-flap tables. Typical home embossers are portable, but you should consider gripping mechanism, power requirements, height and weight of materials, and die sizes.

The types of materials an embossing press can handle range from fabrics, paper, thin metals and wood to chipboard and foam. Common household uses include the creation of cards, borders, placeholders, invitations, holiday decorations, personalized frames, or door decorations. Decide on your most likely project scopes and find the device that meets those requirements with the most versatility.


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