Ellison All-Star Cutter Review, Inspiration & GIVEAWAY!

Thank you to Ellison for partnering with me on today’s blog post. I received an All-Star Cutter and a few dies in exchange for writing this review. All opinions are my own and I only support brands and products that I use and absolutely love.  

Every once in a while a company reaches out to me to host a giveaway and I have to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming. This is one of those moments! I have such a fabulous giveaway for you today, courtesy of Ellison Education. In true Kinder-Craze style, I have some ADORABLE project inspiration for you as well. More on that later. First, let me tell you about the amazing AllStar SuperStar Machine!

Ooops! I already got a tiny bit ahead of myself. Allow me to back up a bit. You are probably already familiar with Ellison Education. They are a standard name in schools across the country because of the die-cutting machines they manufacture. Teachers would be lost without all of those adorable cutouts of animals, flowers, and alphabets and snowflakes we use all year long. They instantly make any paper craft a breeze. We have two Ellison cutters at my school and dozens of dies, which are used every single day in my building.

The Ellison AllStar SuperStar Cutting Machine

I thought I knew everything there was to know about Ellison dies and cutters, but I was WRONG. I had no idea about their secret little UBER-amazing personal cutter: the AllStar SuperStar cutting machine. What makes this machine so amazing? Well, it’s lightweight (yes, I said lightweight), portable, durable, and the perfect size for your home office or classroom. Did I mention that it’s lightweight??!
Ellison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAYEllison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAY
The AllStar SuperStar Machine is compatible with AllStar dies. I selected a set of Skeleton Part set of 3 dies for my project.
Ellison AllStar cutting dies
The dies themselves are not very tall. They are fed though the machine foam-side-up and sandwiched between two clear acrylic sheets.
Ellison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAY
The die-cut sandwich (as I call it) is placed on the machine and a few turns of the hand crank draws the die through the cutter.
Ellison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAY
Ellison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAY
Ellison AllStar SuperStar Machine GIVEAWAY
When the die emerges from the back, you can see that it has cut a distinct shape into the paper. This is the ribcage for my skeleton project.

This isn’t exactly a feature of the machine that they advertise, but I thought it was really cool that the cutter left an impression in the sheet of acrylic as well.
Ellison AllStar die cut machine information
After several cuts, the plastic looked like this.
Ellison AllStar SuperStar die cut machine information
Ellison AllStar cutting die

Ellison DieCut X-Ray Craftivity Fun

Once I had cut enough materials, I was ready to begin my project.
Just to clarify: this was NOT a scary skeleton project.
It was an ALPHABET project.
A letter Xx project.
Actually, it was an X-RAY project.

Two of my favorite little friends came to visit me and help me out with this project. One is in Kindergarten, the other girl is a First Grader so we did two variations of this activity to double your inspiration and see how it could work for multiple grade levels.

I began by assembling the skeleton parts as a model for my kindergarten helper. The arm and leg bones can be a bit confusing so I showed her exactly how they went together.
X-ray skeleton project for preschool or kindergarten
Once a model was created, my kindergarten helper was ready to create! She glued each skeleton piece onto a 12×18″ sheet of black construction paper.
kindergarten x-ray skeleton project
kindergarten x-ray skeleton project
kindergarten x-ray skeleton project
We gave the skeleton a heart to add a little pop of color.
cute kindergarten x-ray skeleton craft
This was a fun way to reinforce the sound of Xx and is a perfect, inexpensive project for a preschool or kindergarten classroom.

Realistic X-Ray Craft

To extend the skeleton craft, I used the same skeleton die cuts to create authentic looking x-rays with clear contact paper. (If you’re new to the world of Kinder-Craze, you should know that I am obsessed with clear contact paper and I use it ALL the time for craft projects).

To complete this project, I cut a sheet of contact paper that was approximately 9×18″ long, peeled the glossy paper, and placed it sticky-side-up on the table.

My first grade friend assembled the skeleton directly onto the contact paper (no glue required!)
cute kindergarten x-ray skeleton craft
cute kindergarten x-ray skeleton craft
The bones alone would be enough to complete the project but I wanted it to be used as a literacy extension activity. We got a little silly and used our x-ray in conjunction with the book There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly. In this case, we decided to connect it with the moment she swallowed a dog (you know… to catch the cat). I used my school equipment to cut a black dog silhouette, which we added to the stomach of the skeleton.
cute authentic-looking kindergarten x-ray craft
I printed a line of text front the story and my helper cut the words out.
cute x-ray craft for There Was an Old Lady book extension
This was added to the sticky bottom of our x-ray craft.
cute x-ray craft for There Was an Old Lady book extension
A fresh sheet of contact paper was placed sticky-side-down onto the project to seal all of the pieces and keep the sticky stuff contained.
cute x-ray craft for There Was an Old Lady book extension
Then we held the x-ray up to the window to examine the evidence.
cute authentic-looking kindergarten x-ray craft
Looks like she swallowed a dog!
realistic transparent x-ray craft
My Ellison All Star Super Star cutting machine and Skeleton Parts dies made these classroom projects a breeze!
cute x-ray skeleton craft project ideas

The Giveaway

Now that you know all about the AllStar SuperStar, are you ready for the giveaway? Ellison Education is generously giving one lucky Kinder-Craze winner an AllStar SuperStar cutting machine and a few AllStar dies to get you started. This is a prize package valued over $200! Use the Rafflecopter below for your chance to enter. The giveaway will run now thru Sunday, January 19 at 10:00pm ET.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Maria Gavin

Maria is a former kindergarten and first grade teacher, with 13 years of teaching experience. Her love and passion for all things early childhood is now fulfilled as a mom to two amazing kids. She loves sharing practical and creative tips and ideas that are perfect for young learners – in the classroom or at home!

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78 Responses

  1. wowza! I would love to win this. I teach at a very small school and we don’t have a die cut! I would start with patternblock shapes. Cutting them by hand is bonkers! Thanks for the opportunity!

  2. I’m an OT so I’d love the lacing heart, snowflake frame and the 5 senses head and body parts. Our schools don’t have any die cutters and it would be awesome to share it with all my teacher friends. Thanks for providing such awesome activities, you make my job so much easier!

  3. Our PTO helped purchase many of their die cuts and we have two HEAVY “presses”. I would love to have one that is light weight that I could carry around. No more hanging out in our workroom!

  4. I love Ellison machines! I’ve always been fascinated with them…My mother taught religious education at my school and I would always help her cut out letters and shapes. And now that I’m a teacher, I love Ellison even more! It makes making everything so easy! If I won, I think I’d get the skeleton. It’s so cute!

  5. This would be incredible! We have a die-cut machine in our school but we have to share the die-cuts with the entire district. Let me just say, good luck getting a heart for Valentine’s Day if you forgot to put in a request three months earlier. 😉

  6. Hmm, there are so many that I would really like to have. The three I would pick are the “Key & Keyhole”, “Mitten”, and the “Teeth (Molar, Incisor & Canine)” die cuts.

  7. This giveaway is awesome! My school does not have one of these, or any cutting machine. I would love to have this capability! Thanks for the chance.

  8. I have so enjoyed your blog as a “new” older kindergarten teacher! I stayed home and raised my 4 children in Catholic schools and now am returning to the classroom 20 years later! Wish I was in a Catholic school! I’d love to win the machine.

  9. I love the heart frame, and I love the shape frames! (hexagon, rhombus)! and I love the lacing heart! Oh and the pentominoes are cool! I love the stars! There are just too many to choose!

  10. I would start with some seasonal favorites, like a snowflake, a flower and a leaf. Perfect to use inside your stained glass window-type projects!

  11. I like the star because I use stars with stickers for a behavior incentive. I also like the snowflake, bow, handprint, heart, etc. hahaha love them all!

    Caitlin

  12. I just love the X-ray idea! So cute. You must go through a ton of clear contact paper each year! I’d love to have the lace up heart and apple dies, the pattern block and tangram dies, either envelope die (for our class post office), and dies of the children and the skeleton (both parts). Oh what I could teach with all of that!

  13. Wow! Looks like an awesome machine! I like the birthday cake, mitten, and large cross dies. So many good choices, though! Thanks for the chance to win!

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Hi, I'm Maria.

I’m a former kindergarten teacher turned work-from-home mom. I still love sharing ideas and resources to make teaching easier, so you can focus on what really matters in the classroom. When I’m not working on the blog, you’ll find me chasing kids around the house with a cold cup of coffee in my hand (some things never change even once you’re out of the classroom!)

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