Bruce Brachman Discusses The Original Concept of His Perfect Layers Tools


Concept Sketches

The Perfect Layers bordering tools were invented to create handmade cards.

I had always created my own cards for my friends and family. Mostly, these were hand- drawn images on blank cards.

In 2000, I discovered a wonderful store (Create an Impression in Ardmore, PA), dedicated to rubber stamping and other related crafts.

I took classes on card making and rubber-stamping at the store, and bought tons of stamps, papers and tools to make better cards. One of the techniques I learned was bordering: border the centerpiece, add another layer and so on.

The technique adds a touch of class to the card and gives a ‘finished’ look. You have to measure each side, then ruler cut each side and then start again with each border. Very time-consuming.

After a few weeks of thinking about a tool that would eliminate measuring, I assembled a crude version of what is now Perfect Layers. IT WORKED! The first time! I made a second prototype, which also worked. Layering artwork could take minutes of measuring and cutting; with this simple little tool, I could do the same thing in less than 30 seconds. With NO measuring.

Fast forward to 2001. I was working for P&M Products/Color Workshop (the home of the BLOpen). Still thinking about the tool, I mentioned my idea to Michael Rolfe, the owner of P&M, visiting from the UK. He gave me the best advice for creating any new invention: design the heck out of it and then leave it alone for a couple of weeks. Let the idea simmer.

I did that, then brought it to the attention of my wonderful boss, Julia Benben. She loved the idea and showed it to a good friend and fellow QVC presenter Lisa Bearnson, who was also a guru of scrapbooking! Lisa loved it, and the Perfect Layers tools were produced, presented and sold on QVC for years. Now they are a core product of the new website A place that sells creative tools for paper crafts, like card making … which originally started the whole idea of Perfect Layers.

Just goes to show you, that any idea (with the right resources) can become real.

-Bruce Brachman


First Prototype


Second Prototype

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