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Getting started in card-making
The beauty of handmade cards
According to the American Greeting Card Association, the average person receives more than 20 cards a year, and around one-third of those are birthday cards – now I don’t know who’s getting and giving all those cards, but it sure ain’t me! With the prices of shop-bought cards being what they are these days, I know of very few people who still regularly give cards on special occasions. But isn’t it lovely when you do receive a card that’s been carefully picked out for you? Or even better, one that’s been carefully made for you? I have one friend who is particularly good at this: every card she has ever given me was made by her, just for me – do I throw these away with the rest when my birthday’s over? Not a chance, they’re packed away in my kist with all my other special things, a reminder that someone took the trouble to think a little about who I am and what I like, and then to craft something guaranteed to make me smile.

Making cards doesn't have to be expensive
Card-making is not a difficult craft to get started on, and you don’t need to go to a great deal of expense. It’s a great way to use up scraps from other crafting endeavours, and with a little creativity virtually anything can be creatively incorporated into a card. To start you thinking, all of the following are fair game: buttons (broken or whole), old cards, stamps (both the postage variety and the inky type), pages from old books, old newspapers, pictures or words from magazines, giftwrap offcuts, coins, sealing wax, feathers, leaves, potato prints, tin-foil, wool, photocopied photographs, fabric scraps, beads, sequins, ribbon (plastic, paper or fabric), glitter, stencils, felt, stickers, rose petals, lavender, netting, shells, sweet wrappers (and sweets, if they’re the right kind!), old useless keys that have mysteriously lost their doors (we all have those…), string, dried flowers, artificial flowers… and the list goes on.

Set aside some time
For most people (unless you have a permanent work-space where you can leave your crafting goodies ready to go), it’s probably best to set aside some time, take a look at your calendar to see what birthdays, anniversaries and holidays are coming up in the near future, gather all your card supplies and ideas, and then settle down for a few hours to create a whole array of truly personalised cards in one go.

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