Monday, 21 October 2013

Cards - Making good use of my stash

Now that I have finished making all those cards that I will be sending out at Christmas and have put all my card making stash away, I thought I'd do a blog about my approach to card making.  As you would expect, given that my motto is 'making good use of things', I try and recycle as much as possible, and make bought stuff stretch as far as I can.  Mam always taught us to be thrifty and not to waste things and its a good approach to take.

So how does that affect my card making?

1. Freebies
I love a freebie don't you?  I subscribe to one craft magazine at a time and sometimes they come with free papers or stamps, and over the years I have built up quite a few free papers which are great for the backgrounds of cards - or even the main design!  Then there are the embellishments which are also great and can last for ages if used sparingly.

 The NO√čL heart card and the mauve polar bear both use free papers.

2. Recycling
Cards would be much less fun without recycling!  After Birthdays and Christmas I spend a couple of happy hours cutting up all the cards (except any special handmade ones that go in a memory drawer for safe keeping).  Because I'm making cards for personal use rather than for sale, I have no problems re-using the designs on bought cards.  So what can you get from a bought card?  Well first there's the main design that you might be able to use as a 'topper' for your cards.  Not all are suitable but it's surprising how many you can use.  All of the cards below use recycled main designs.
Then there are the words - again can't use them all but worth trying. All but the red snowflake card use recycled words.
After that there is the background card which sometimes has a nice colour on the inside or outside, or a small design on the back that you might be able to use as a topper.  Some of the bigger cards have paper inserts which can be saved as well. 
Once your family know you are using your old cards you will probably get a visit from them carrying a bag full of theirs!


Other things I've recycled and used on cards: keys, wires, resisters and sheets from a dismantled laptop keyboard; feathers collected from my budgies; silk flowers from a garland; sparkly shapes that get strewn on tables at parties; beads and sequins from old clothes.

3. The bought stuff
Yes I do have some bought stuff:  card blanks, embellishments, peel off stickers, and some card and paper (not to mention the glue and double-sided sticky tape of course).  Asking for stash items as presents is good because people are usually happy to feed your hobby.  Pound shops are also good for items that make good cards - usually not in the card making sections! The two Santa cards are shiny foamy stickers of a window decoration sheet.
I bought some tree, star and snowflake embellishments a few years ago - they came in three different colours.  I only use a couple on a card so they have lasted me ages.  Also, if you have small punches you can make small sticky shapes from the leftover peel-off sheets.

 

I hope you've enjoyed reading this blog and are now happily hunting for more and more items for your stash! 
 
 
 

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