People absolutely LOVE receiving hand-made cards. And when those cards look as pretty as these cards do, the recipient views the card as the gift itself! I am going to show you step-by-step how to achieve this shabby,vintage look in your handmade Christmas cards. Let's get started, shall we?
You can use card stock and make your own cards also but by using these you save a lot of time.
|Both Kraft and Off-White work well for these cards.|
Using Christmas-themed patterned paper, cut 40 rectangles measuring 4.5" x 6". Less if you are making less than 40 cards. (Cut one for each card you are making.) They can be of different patterns.
I use every pattern in the paper line. This way, when covering your cards, each one will be a little different, yet it will still coordinate with the others. Sometimes I use glossy papers for my backgrounds. If you wish to do this, select coordinating colors of glossy paper, and cut it so it measures 4.5 x 6".
NOTE: I cut these backgrounds from a different paper line than Nutcracker Sweet, as I had them left over from last time. You can cut them from the same paper line, or another one, because it's the background and it won't really matter. Just make sure it coordinates and goes with the card's theme.
These rectangles were cut from other paper than the Nutcracker paper line. They are backgrounds, so it only needs to coordinate, not match exactly. Also-I lined up the rectangle to show you how much of the card is covered up.
Now that you have cut the rectangles, get the paper with images on it, and cut all the images apart. Most collections have one or two papers that contain separate images, rather than a repeating pattern. Sometimes they are tags, sometimes you see 12 rectangles with images.
Using a scissors or distressing tool, rough up the edges of all the images that you cut apart in Step 2.
Of course, this is optional. Sometimes you may opt to leave the edges plain. Decide what "look" you want with your finished card. If a more shabby outcome is desired, distressing is best.
On a craft sheet, ink all edges of the cut images and the 4.5"x 6" rectangles from Step 1. Vintage Photo Distress Ink works very well. With an applicator such as a blending tool or sponge, ink every edge of every single image. This is a bit messy so the craft sheet is a must! Starting outside of the image, move your blending tool in a circular motion and move onto the paper so as not to leave a rectangle of ink on the card. (You may want to practice on a piece of scratch paper to get the hang of it.) If you are inking up the "distressed" image, make sure that you ink all of the white areas created by the distress tool. Paper has layers, and when the paper is frayed it reveals white paper underneath. So take the time to get good coverage on your image. Once ALL images are inked up, set aside for later. I put mine in a sandwich bag, to keep the ink from getting on anything it shouldn't! Especially if you make these cards in stages.
|Inking this is optional, but it really ads to the shabby feel of the card.|
Here and below, you see one example is inked, and one is left plain.
Open the card package and remove all 40 of the blank cards, setting the envelopes aside. Ink up the fronts of all the cards. Use the same technique you did with the images--start on the craft sheet in a circular motion and work onto the card. It is only important to ink the edges, as the center of the card will eventually be covered up with other paper. The goal is to make this fresh clean card look old and vintage, so put ink on the front, the back, and the inside of the card.
Ink the envelopes. Use the same technique as above. Set aside.
Emboss your glossy paper at this time. There are many lovely embossing folders with Christmas themes. Snowflakes, words, and other images look nice behind the collage on your card.
You are going to be busy preparing these cards, but it will be worth it! So, until next time,