It is so satisfying to give a greeting card I have made myself. As a scrapbooker, I already possessed most of the materials I needed to make cards; heavy-duty papers, rubber stamps, colored pencils, lots of embellishments and scraps of lighter weight papers… so the progression to making cards a few years ago seemed natural.
Often, photos I have taken work out perfectly for different people on my list. Sometimes, I actually have the foresight to take a photo especially for use in a particular card I plan to make. For instance, I have a friend who collects things with a sunflower theme. If I see a particularly interesting sunflower I take the photo to use for her next birthday or ‘just because’ card. I have even made sets of cards as gifts for certain friends. Recently, I made a set of cards with various hummingbird images stamped on them, each one hand colored, for a friend who collects hummingbird images. Natural elements lend themselves well to card making.
Combining a variety of elements makes handmade cards interesting. Adding elements like small shells, dried flowers, photos, interesting paper shapes, silk flowers, small hardware; like safety pins with beads strung on them, ribbons, twine, doilies…. not all on the same card of course, but in combinations that showcase textures and color schemes makes each card unique and personal.
One of my favorite ‘tricks’ with photographs is to alter them to sepia tone to create an antique look to them. I usually combine these altered images with vintage looking paper and some old-fashioned looking embellishments. I like to combine additional items with cards when it’s appropriate; a homemade bookmark or a gift certificate for something relevant like a birthday meal or a day spent together sharing a mutual interest…
Sometimes, the nicest cards are the simplest. A special photo or sentiment, combined with a coordinating paper choice may be sufficient to express a particular sentiment.
Feel free to send me any interesting homemade card hints.