Is the 123 Punch Board by We R Memory Keepers the super tool every paper crafter needs, or just a super fail? Find out in my review!
123 Punch Board by We R Memory Keepers
Looking to save time on tedious paper crafting tasks? Meet the 123 Punch Board!
This versatile tool is one of the latest in a long line of punch boards by the crafty folks at We R Memory Keepers. So what’s so special about this one? The 123 Punch Board combines the technology of three separate punch boards into one!
With its simple measure-punch-score technology, you can create paper envelopes, boxes, and bows in several different sizes. Not only that, but the measuring is already done for you — simply follow the handy guidelines on the 123 Punch Board flap to punch and score.
Sounds pretty awesome, doesn’t it? The big question is, does the 123 Punch Board really do all of that? Let’s find out!
123 Punch Board Review
11.8″ x 9.8″ x 2″
What’s Included in the Box:
- The board
- One scoring/folding tool
- A full-color manual and project guide
With the basic tool, you can make:
- Envelopes from 2×3-1/2 inches to 7×7 inches in size
- Boxes from 1-3/4 inches to 4 inches in size
- 4 different sizes of bows
- Extra projects included in the manual — coin envelopes, file folders, and more
Your purchase of the 123 Punch Board also includes access to an Envelope Generator app, which provides measurements for making envelopes in any size. If you’re willing to do a little math, you can also create boxes and bows in custom sizes.
How the 123 Punch Board Works
The way that you use the board will vary slightly depending on the project you make with it. However, the process is pretty similar for each item. Because the best way for you to understand how it works is to see it in action, here’s a little video by Christine from ScrapTime Videos that shows it in use.
The Real Details
To get a really good feel for this board, I tried each project listed in the manual. Then I went back and made them again. Here are my conclusions:
What I Love About This Tool
- Major time and headache saver. The biggest pro about the 123 Punch Board is the amount of time and the headache it saves you on figuring out measurements for cutting and scoring. With just a quick glance at the board flap, you know what size to cut your paper, and where to score and punch. I can’t tell you how many hours of my life I wasted before this tool on calculations, which I’m pretty bad at, by the way. Not a problem anymore!
- Does the work of several punch boards. We R Memory Keepers offers a whole line of punch boards for various paper craft tasks. Although the 123 Punch Board is pricier than the others, it does the work of three boards, so you don’t lose time or creative momentum by switching between tools.
- Makes more projects than those it was designed for. The instruction manual includes several projects besides just envelopes, bows, and boxes that you can make with this tool. I love that the makers were thinking outside the box…errr…board here! There are also a lot of really cool videos online by creative crafters who found even more fun ways to use the 123 Punch Board. You’ve got to love versatility!
- Lightweight and small but sturdy. The board is about the size of a portable 12-inch paper trimmer. It’s easy to carry, and doesn’t take up much storage space. Despite its small size and weight, this board is very sturdy. I’ve dropped mine several times already, with no damage done!
TIP: I don’t recommend dropping your board on purpose just to test this!
- The scoring/folding tool slides into the board for storage. I hate scrambling to find pieces of a tool when I need them! Because the scoring/folding tool clips onto the 123 Punch Board, that isn’t an issue.
- Built-in corner rounder and corner slit punches. The punch mechanism has a corner rounder slot and a corner tab slot on the back. This keeps you from having to dig for yet another tool to complete your projects.
- Extendable scoring arm for larger projects. Want to make a big box or full-size file folder? No problem! The 123 Punch Board includes an arm with extended score lines. When you don’t need it, just fold the arm back into the board.
- Easy, full-color directions and project samples. The directions included in the manual are easy to follow, and include full-color photos. Nothing is worse than trying to figure out how to use a tool from sketched diagrams. No such problem here!
- Downloadable app for additional envelope sizes. We R Memory Keepers is keeping things modern with their Envelope Generator app. Simply download the app and punch in the size of envelope you want to make. The app does all the figuring for you — no calculator necessary!
What I Don’t Love About This Tool
- Tightly packed measurements. The measurements printed on the 123 Punch Board flap are all packed pretty close together, so if you’re rushing, you can get confused between one line and the next. We R Memory Keepers did make the effort to shade every other line, but my brain still had some difficulty processing this, and I got mixed up a few times. At first I just thought the measurements were off — it actually took talking to Customer Service at We R Memory Keepers to realize what was happening. However, I solved the problem by putting a straight edge under the line I was trying to read, and then everything worked just fine.
- There is a learning curve to each new project. This isn’t a ‘negative’ so much as a word of caution. Don’t assume anything! I thought that I could extrapolate from what I already knew a couple of times, and then messed up my paper. Read the manual carefully for each new project, and then do the project a couple of times following the directions step by careful step before trying it solo.
- Incorrect Measurements for A2 Envelopes (sort of ). The standard A2 card size is incorrectly listed on the 123 Punch Board flap as “4-1/2 x 5-1/2 inches.” However, after speaking with Customer Service at We R Memory Keepers, I learned that this is the closest the board can come to making an envelope for this size of card. An A2 card will fit just fine in this envelope — there will just be a little extra wiggle room along one edge.
- Incorrect sales listings. The maximum sizes of envelopes and boxes, as well as the number of bows that this tool will make is different from what was promised in the sales listing. I purchased my board from Michael’s Crafts, and their sales listing still states that this tool will make envelopes up to 18 inches in size, boxes up to 10.2 inches, and 6 sizes of bows. At the time of purchase, other retailers also listed this same incorrect info (perhaps they copied from each other?). However, the basic tool will actually only make envelopes up to 7×7 inches, boxes up to 4×4 inches, and 4 sizes of bows. So the tool is not quite as versatile as originally promised.
- Envelope Generator App is a bit clunky. Because I think it was nice of We R Memory Keepers to include an app with the 123 Punch Board, I’m not going to really complain. However, I will caution you to read the subtitles below each measurement box to make sure you’re putting the numbers in the right places. For example, I tested it with the A2 (4-1/4 x 5-1/2 inches) size to see if it would make a better envelope than what is listed on the board. I typed 4.25 inches as the width and 5.5 inches as the height, and it gave me an envelope completely the wrong size. Reading the subtext carefully afterwards, I noted that the Envelope Generator requires you to enter the longer side in the Width box, and the shorter side in the Height box, even if that isn’t necessary how you plan to orient your card.
- The app is only for envelopes. I really wish the Envelope Generator app worked for boxes and bows as well. In particular, I found that the smallest bow size listed on the printed guidelines for the 123 Punch Board was still a little bigger than I wanted.
Super Tool or Super Fail?
Overall I’m quite pleased with the 123 Punch Board. I honestly didn’t expect to be, given the low price point compared to a lot of paper crafting tools on the market. However, in my humble opinion, the time- and headache-saving features of the 123 Punch Board make it worth far more than the cost! Throw in the extra projects you can make with it, and this one is a real winner.
The couple of downsides to this tool that I found are easily solved by taking your time, at least until you get the hang of using it. There is a learning curve to using the 123 Punch Board, and you want to make sure you’re reading the measurements correctly, so don’t try a new project when you’re in a rush.
Bottom line, if you haven’t already, I highly recommend that you add the 123 Punch Board to your toolbox. Just think of how much easier your holiday crafting could be this year with this tool! Custom envelopes for your Christmas cards, pretty gift boxes in a variety of sizes, and even bows to top them off with…with this tool, there’s so much paper crafting fun to be had!
Share Your Thoughts
Do you use the 123 Punch Board? If so, what do or don’t you love about it? If you don’t already have it, how likely are you to add this tool to your craft supplies? Do you have questions about the 123 Punch Board that I can help answer? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!
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