Thursday, December 13, 2012

Border Punches Product Review

I like border punches. I think that they add an extra finished touch to cards. What I don't like is how expensive they are. With that said - you definitely get what you pay for when it comes to buying cheaper versions versus the more expensive brands.

Two Christmas's ago, I requested a Fiskars notebook border punch for Christmas from my hubby. It has been very easy to use. It doesn't have a plastic cover over the bottom to catch the punched paper, but I've realized that I don't really like that plastic piece there. You have to empty it after each other punch before the space gets too filled to be able to continue punching, which can get time consuming, especially when you are trying to do multiple cards at once. All in all, I have really liked the way the Fiskars border punches are built.

Then, a little over a year ago, my MIL bought me a recollections border punch. I was excited, because I only had one at that point. However, I was only able to get about a month of use out of it before the springs on one side of  the punch popped out of allignment and the punch got jammed. My hubby tried to "un-jam" it, but broke the plastic lever in the process. Then during a black Friday sale at Michaels this year, I tried another one, got about 1 week of use out of it this time and had the exact thing happen. I haven't tried to "un-jam" it though, because I am hoping to take it back to Michaels with the receipt and get a refund.  Ultimately, they are a few dollars cheaper than the Fiskars brand, but much more awkwardly and cheaply made. Also, these have a plastic door on the bottom that catches the scraps - which ends up causing the situation mentioned above. Overall, I am not a very big fan of the Recollections border punches.

Over the last several months, I've found that TJMaxx has been selling EK Success punches for about 50% of their price in the regular craft stores (with an even big price difference between those sold online) so I have slowly been buying them when I see a pattern I like. I haven't bought very many because, like most stores that sell overstock, there is a reason that they were overstocked, but I have found a few good border punches, including the Christmas tree one that I had been scouring TJMaxx for throughout most of the summer. It is normally 15/16 dollar punch on the EK Success website (It doesn't look like they sell the Christmas tree one there anymore), and I got it for only 3.99, which I was pretty happy about. Also, they are much more sturdily made and have a nice little feature that I haven't seen on any other punches. You can compact the punches to be flat (It works kinda like a hair straightener. You push the top down and then slide a button on the bottom to lock the punch in place). This makes storage much easier so that you can stack them on top of one another, which you can't really do with most other brands found in craft stores. (Note: EK Success punches do not have a bottom door over the punch section to catch paper remains.) I really like that the TJMaxx where I live sells the border punches because it has enabled me to buy some of the better punches for a really low price. 

Well, I hope that short review of these three different brands has helped. Has anyone else tried any other brands of punches that they like? Any other experiences like the ones I've had with the Recollections border punches?


  1. I know so little about paper punches...but I always appreciate when others give honest reviews of products. I'm thinking of doing that very shortly about a light I have.

    I think you need to take it back to Michaels...I would take both broken noes if you bought them from there and share your disappointment. It might also be beneficial to write the company. Sometimes that makes a difference, sometimes it doesn't.

  2. I definitely am going to take it back. (Wish I still had the old one, but it broke several months ago and I threw it away.)

    I never thought to write the company. Thanks for the suggestion Anita!