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Tips to Make Great Greeting Cards

Beginners Guide to Making Cards

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Simple Rubber Stamped Card

Simple Rubber Stamped Card

Kate Pullen

Making Hand Stamped Cards

Many rubber stampers enjoy using their stamping skills to make greeting cards. Birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, births and many other special dates can all be marked with a special hand stamped greeting card. In addition to this there are numerous other occasions when a card is much appreciated such as simple 'thinking of you' cards through to the more unusual 'on your divorce'.

Great Project for Beginners

Making rubber stamped greeting cards are an excellent project for beginners. They present an ideal opportunity to practice new techniques or use a range of different stamps and they also are a wonderful way to produce one of a kind cards which cost much less than their store bought alternatives. Making greetings cards isn't difficult and a beginner can produce some lovely cards given very little in the way of special equipment or fancy techniques. Here are some tips to help beginners plan their first greeting card projects.

Stamping Technique

The image can be stamped directly onto the card or stamped onto paper or cardstock first. There are advantages to both techniques and the choice will largely depend on the type of project and the desired finished effect.

Advantages of stamping directly onto the card:

  • It is quicker to do
  • This is good for simple and uncluttered designs
  • Less paper or cardstock is required
Advantages of stamping onto paper or cardstock first:
  • An unclear or uneven stamped image will not result in the card being ruined
  • Multiple stamped images or collage effects can be achieved without the need to mask images
  • A good way to use up odds and ends
  • This is particularly effective for layering to give 3d or textured finishes

Applying Images to Cards

If images have been stamped onto paper or cardstock prior to being attached to the card, they need to be attached to the card so that the end result looks well designed. Giving the paper or cardstock a patterned edge can help give a professional finish. This can be achieved in different ways:

  • Tearing: Tearing paper gives a textured edge and this can be colored to complement the finished design.
  • Pattern Edge Scissors: Scissors that cut leaving a patterned edge are available in many styles and these are a useful way to add pattern in a uniform way.

Color

A good color scheme can help create the perfect card. Some basic principles such as using pastel colors for babies are ways of defining a design for the card. Color can be added in a number of ways including using colored paper or cardstock and coloring images. Chalks, inks and marker pens are all good ways of adding color to a stamped image and produce different finished effects:

  • Chalks: These give gentle coloring and are good where subtle or muted shades are required.
  • Inks: Some inks can be used as paints and can be painted onto images. The colors can be diluted to produce light colors or used straight from the pad for deeper shades.
  • Marker Pens: Special marker pens can be purchased for coloring stamped images, although normal marker pens work well too. These give rich colors in vibrant shades.
  • Embossing: Embossing powders are available in a wide range of colors and bring a professional touch to cards. Subtle effects can be achieved by clear embossing powder over a clear ink as this slightly deepens the color of the cardstock.

Embellishments

Paper or cardstock embellishments can be made using a craft or paper punch. This can be used to punch out shapes which can be added to the cards. Add embellishments to cards with glue dots for a raised image and to give depth to the card.

Text

Text is an important feature in a greeting card, the right sentiment tells the recipient how you feel and makes the card extra special. While it would be great to own text rubber stamps for every occasion, the reality is often very different. It is possible to print text from a computer for rubber stamped projects and this can be incorporated into the finished design. This opens up a whole range of text opportunities that can work well with any rubber stamped greeting card project.

Design Tips

  • Less is More! An extremely effective card can be created by using a small stamp on a large plain sheet of card.
  • Tapestry stamps can be used to create wreaths or frames for cards.
  • For a formal effect try laying the stamped designs out in a structured way, for instance evenly spaced in rows or columns.
More About Making Handmade Cards

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