Card Crafting your own greetings cards gives a personal touch that friends and family will really cherish. One of the best points about card crafting is that anyone can have a go. You do not need bags of equipment to get started – you can make the cards as creative or elaborate as you want them to be. You’ll find yourself having lots of fun too!
Tools of the trade
You will first need a few basic tools to get going which you may already have at home. Here is a simple checklist to get you going:
- A decent pair of crafting scissors is a good start, as you will need scissors for cutting your card to size, as well as cutting shapes or patterns as part of the design of the card.
- A craft knife is also handy for making accurate cuts.
- If you want to draw straight lines or make measurements for your card, a metal ruler will do the job.
- If you are going to add decorations (or embellishments) to your card, you will need some sort of adhesive to stick them on to it. There are different types of adhesives available for different purposes, so have a look in your local craft shop to see what you might need. PVA glue is ideal for sticking small decorative items to the card as it dries clear. If you have very small items to stick down, then glue dots are small dots of glue that peel off and stick to items.
- The most essential item to have is paper or card!
There are tons of options available for card crafting paper from various sizes, weights, styles and colours. Card textures vary too, including matt, glossy, textured or glittery, for example. Make sure the weight you use is heavy enough to stand up and hold the embellishments in place, especially if you use weighty items such as buttons to decorate your card with.
How to cut your card to size
When making your card, you can either cut the card to size yourself, or to save time, you may decide to buy blank cards and envelopes, so that you can just focus on the design. If you make your own card, then cut your card neatly to size. If you have access to a paper trimmer or guillotine then that is perfect, but if not scissors and a ruler will do the job. Make sure to protect the surface underneath when cutting, and if you have a cutting mat, this will make it much easier.
- Decide how big you want the card to be.
- Measure your card to find the middle, and draw a line down the centre of the card using a fine pencil.
- Score along the line using a ruler to make it easier to fold the card. Rub off the pencil mark and fold the card in half.
- Decide which way you want your card to be presented. If you are making an envelope to go with it, or already have an envelope, ensure the card will fit inside it.
Let the fun begin!
The next stage is the fun bit, and involves adding designs to the card. This is where your imagination really comes into play! There are absolutely tons of options available for decorating your card, but if you need some inspiration, then have a look through craft magazines or browse online.
You do not have to stick to the tried and tested ideas. There are lots of things you can use to decorate your card – have a look at home to see what odds and ends might be handy, such as old buttons, pipe cleaners, bits of leftover wallpaper, beads, wool and fabrics, etc. Take inspiration from the garden, too, and seek feathers, petals, leaves and flowers that could be dried and then fixed to your card.
Card crafting ideas for every occasion
You might want to decide on a theme for your card, and you could decide on a theme based on who you are sending your card to. For a child, you might want to decorate it with fun, cute stickers, goggle eyes, beads and feathers, for example. If the card is a Christmas card, then you might want to go to town with glitter and stars, for instance.
For a wedding card, then tiny bells, bows, sequins, ribbon and flower embellishments are particularly apt. Use some nice pens, pencils and crayons with your card, and make use of stencils for creating images. Rubber stampers are also very easy to use and make a fun addition to a card.
Arrange where you want your decorations to go on the card before you stick them down, so you can make sure that the card looks balanced and how you want it to be. Leave room to write or add a sticker with a message or greeting on the front. Try not to add too much detail to the card, no matter how enthusiastic you are, and stick to no more than three colours for a co-ordinated feel.
Card Crafting Inserts
Once the front of your card is finished, you might want to consider adding an insert to the inside for a personalised message. You can buy cardblanks then print your greetings onto them, or you can make your own. If you do not want to hand write it, then use a computer to print out a message in fancy type. You could create a template insert, which you can change the wording of, to suit the particular card.
Now you are ready to get started on your first card! Did you find our tip tips useful? Don’t forget to share your card crafting advice with us.