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How to Make Cards

Card Making 101

This is my quick and easy ten point plan on how to make cards - Your Card Making 101 to remind you of each step.

Just follow the links for more information.

Print a copy to use as a reminder.

Step 1 - Gather Materials

The first step is to gather all the necessary materials you will need to create your greeting card. This will include card for your card base and for any layers.

You also need glue, scissors, ruler, pencil and any other items you need.

Step 2 - Decide on Message

Before you start making the card, consider the occasion and the recipient. Who is the card for? What is the occasion? Birthday, anniversary, or just a simple thank you card? 

 And most importantly, consider the message you want to write.

Step 3 - Decide on Design

Decide on the colour scheme, style and overall design of your card. 

Design your Card Layout and make colour choices.  

Outline your card design by making a card sketch or template.


Simple Card Layouts

Card Making Sketches

Step 4 - Size and Cut Your Card

Choose your card to make your card base. Decide on your card size, orientation and fold options. A common size is to fold an 8.5" x 11" (US Letter) or A4 (International) piece of card in half.

Use a bone folder to score your cards in the middle. This will make folding your card easier and give a cleaner fold.


Card Making for Beginners

Card sizes and Layers 

Step 5 - Choose Your Background

Choose your Background for the front of your card. This is your first layer.

There are lots of options such as patterned paper, background stamps and embossed images.


Card Making Backgrounds 

Paper Pads for Card Making

Step 6 - Decorate the Front of Your Card

Use stamped images, die cuts, printable ephemera or anything else you can think of.

Consider using a Focal Image.

Decide whether to add this directly to the background or to another layer of card.

Adhere everything to your card base and background.

Consider raising images, sentiments or layers with foam pads for added dimension.

Use different textures for added interest.

Add Layers - one or two as required.  Layers help add dimension and texture to your card.


Matting and Layering

Step 7 - Add a Sentiment

Use either a pre printed sentiment from a pack, a stamped sentiment or write your own by hand.

This can be something like "Happy Birthday!" or "Congratulations!" or "Thank You!"  as a thin strip or a stamped sentiment on a label.  


Card Making Sentiments

Step 8 - Let it Dry

Once you have completed decorating the outside of your card, let it dry thoroughly. You do not want any wet glue or ink to smudge or transfer to other parts of the card.

Check for any leftover pencil marks or smudges and clean them up with an eraser or white-out.

Step 9 - Add the final touches

Decorate the inside of card with a stamped image or strip of patterned paper at the bottom of the card inside.

Add an inside sentiment (if required).  Use a stamped sentiment or write your message. This can be as short or as long as you want it to be.

Add any final touches with embellishments (if required) such a ribbons, twine, buttons, rhinestones or sequins.


Card Making Embellishments

Step 10 - Personalise Your Envelope

Lastly, don't forget the envelope! You can also decorate it according to the card’s theme, or just stamp "Handmade by...." or "Handmade with Love"

Decorate envelope with stamped image on the envelope flap or corner of the envelope. Or add a patterned paper insert to the inside of the envelope or the outside flap.

There you go!

Your Card is now complete - Congratulations!

how to make cards

Download a PDF Version of "How to Make Cards" to print at home

More Card Making for Beginners....

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