Greeting cards deliver messages of hope, encourgement, thanks, celebration, companionship and comfort to people you love. It’s no wonder that nine out of 10 U.S. households purchase about 30 cards a year, according to the Greeting Card Association. Using cards to express a personal message is a popular custom. Cards offer the right amount of real estate for sending a brief message—not too short or too long—and the best ones are beautiful or entertaining.
Each person in the United States receives more than 20 cards a year and a third are kept forever. Most people would agree that—like homemade food—a personal, handcrafted card has greater value than a store-bought one. But perfect cards are a rare find. Many women labor over finding just the right one for each occasion, so when they find designs they like, they stock up on several. This can be costly in both time and money, considering cards average between $2 and $4 apiece and can be as much as $10 each. Here, we show you how to make inexpensive, well-designed cards in a short amount of time at home. Make several at a time and also create an organizer to keep cards and materials in order.
A special place to store finished cards gives the inspiration needed to design your own greetings. Select a new or repurposed cardboard box and fit it with tabbed dividers. Make a divider for each month of the year. Lines on the back of the dividers provide space for dates, names and occasions. Make additional dividers labeled with the types of cards, such as birthday, anniversary, sympathy, thank-you, thinking of you, baby shower, bridal shower, graduation, etc. Create several cards for each category, and you’ll always be ready for expected and unexpected events. Download card-organizer label templates here.
Gather card-making supplies and keep them organized in one place. Craft materials may include a selection of papers, envelopes, tiny flowers, tissue paper, paints and embellishments such as glitter, beads, buttons, ribbon and string. You may also need pens and markers, glue, scissors, stamps, ink pads, punches, a paper cutter, a bone folder and a computer with a printer. Include fabric, handmade felt flowers, craft or watercolor paints and downloadable clip art. Organic and recyclable materials can include paper sacks (cut up for cards and homemade envelopes), dried flowers and seeds, repurposed clothing trims, old jewelry and cardboard from gift boxes or product packaging.
To make one of the cards, shown left, copy the provided template onto a piece of 80 to 100-lb cardstock. Print a message inside, handwriting or using a computer. Fold the card in half using a bone folder tool. Decorate the card using our ideas or your own concepts. Our designs are cut from patterned scrapbook paper or created with nonsmudging cream chalk on cardstock. Embellish designs with glue-on items and/or markers. Attach the fish to the card with a self-adhesive foam pad, so he seems to float. On other cards, beads become raindrops, glitter embellishes a baby buggy, and rhinestones and flowers dress a wedding cake.
Express Yourself With Words
The best messages are composed by the sender and filled with heartfelt, positive sentiments. Write messages using a word processing program and spell-check the finished message. Cut out and transfer words to the card. For messages, quotes or Bible verses use the following resources.
- The Bible
- Leaves of Gold
- The Bible’s Promises for Life
- The Complete Guide to Christian Quotations
- 1001 Unforgettable Quotes About God, Faith and The Bible