Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Holiday Card Making

I've always been a scrapbooker, but in the past year or so I have got more interested in making cards.  I don't do it often because I am usually not confident in how they will turn out.  I don't want to give someone a crap wedding card.  "Congrats, I care so much that I made you this piece of crap to save a dime on you."  Not what I'm going for.

The one occasion I have been making cards for the past 3 years in Christmas.  I have so much Christmas stuff for cards and there is a plethora of Christmas card ideas on the internet (like Pinterest) so I am confident that my cards will come out cute.  I since it's more of a thinking of you and wishing you the best this time of year, I feel like personal is better.  And I reserve the crappy cards when that happens for close friends/family (sorry mom). 

It all starts with having the basic supplies.  You need the following:
1. Cards (or paper to make cards)
2. Envelopes
3. Solid and Patterened papers
4. Tape (double sided)
5. Colored pens
6.  Scissors/cutter

Pens, tape (double sided, roller), small cutter

I personally buy packs of cards and envelopes that come together at Michaels in both beige and white.  With a coupon they are under $10 for a pack of 50.  Yes, FIFTY!!!  That's 20 cents a card people.  At the card store I personally have a rule of no card over $3 dollars (unless it's super cute or I've already been there an hour looking).

Then I'd like to call these next items the starters kit:
7. Fancier scissors that cut various edges
8. Stamps (from Thank you, to Christmas, to Thinking About You and everything in between)
9. Ink
10. Stickers
11. Ribbon

A sample of my holiday stamps.  I usually look for sale ones or use a coupon at Michaels for them.  The "Joy" and "Noel" were actually dollar section ones.  The ornament shaped, "Happy Holidays" and "Season's Greetings" same in a pack of Holiday Sayings. 
All the square ink pads were under $2 in the sale section at a local scrapbooking store, Archivers.  The others are from Michaels I believe.
This is a collection of scrap paper and holiday stickers.  I try to keep everything like this together so it's easier to find when I'm card making.  I keep most scraps unless they are very tiny.
I stash all my ribbons in an old Hershey box.  I got it as a gift for something with candies inside but it was too cute to throw away.  Glad I found a use for it.  Most of these ribbons come from weddings I've been to (on the bulletin, announcement, favors, wrapping my bridesmaid flower stems, etc) or from various gifts.

These items make the cards fun and festive.  I love stamps that say a Holiday greeting that I can then add my own personal message to.  I usually use the patterned paper, stickers, and stamps to really embellish the outside.  The inside I keep pretty minimal.

These items really help to add a little extra to your cards:
12. Special stamping kits/packs
13. Packs of specialty paper or cards
14. Heat embosser
15. Die-cutting and embossing tool

Holiday paper packs paired with a regular cardstock pack

Specialty cards

The only realm of these extra items I've broke in to is the specialty packs (No. 13).  I have picked up quite a few packs of holiday or just colored cards.  Most packs were just in the $1 section at Michaels (catching a theme here?).  I have a few packs of Holiday paper too that I actually bough for scrapbooking originally.  I love that I can use it for both, since paper packs are usually a bit pricey (over $10 dollars or so), but you do get a lot for your money.  I have about 5 different packs for scrapbooking and in 10+ years I've never finished one.  That's what I call bang for your buck folks!

I've used 13 and 14 a few times at craft stores and friends' houses but just don't have the space to store alot more stuff, plus these are a little most costly usually.

Enough chatter let's look at some cards.  I like to mostly browse ideas online then do something a bit different myself.  Otherwise I'm afraid I might send the same card to someone from one year to the next.  Because the basic card itself is the same, I love to make no two alike.  Even a colored card can be made two different ways. 

Ok, I lied, I made these two alike BUT they are in different colors (gold vs. silver).  I made sure the people who got these would not be people who see each other over the holiday.  We want everyone to feel extra special.

Sometimes I do a card that is more focused to a kid, or more "seasonal" compared to Christmas specific, or that is religious.  I then decide which cards best fit the people I send them to.  Again, it's about wishing them a good season and to let them know your thinking about them.

The first says "Fa La La La La" and then we have jingle bells.  These cards are kind of like ornaments too.

I love how these two open.  Same card style but two different wasn't of making them.

The santa cut-out one is always fun to decorate and the maroon card was just adorned with a simple sticker.

Sometimes I use pieces from old cards (left) or I write my own message on the outside with raised cut-outs (right).

An important thing to note is to ALWAYS "sign" your cards.  A few years ago I found this "R" stamp and I use it on the back of every card.  Then I just write my initials and the year.

Inside your card you not only want to make it pretty and festive, you want to ad your own message.  I keep it pretty generic over all so I can send to whomever later.  I might add an extra special note when I send it out then.

As you see here, I did some stamping inside but added Holiday messages too!

Definitely remember to keep it fun!  Card making is pointless if you don't enjoy it too.  If you'd rather send out a picture card or buy a pack and send the same to everyone then do it.  Just never forget to add an extra message to make it a bit "home-made."

Hope this was a great reminder to send out your Christmas cards or inspire you to make some.  Good Luck!

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