Apart from the fact that most mainstream retailers charge a fortune for them, there’s nothing terribly personal about greetings cards these days. Not only are they costly, but the industry is constantly creating new ‘holidays’ and special dates for us to spend yet more of our hard earned and hard to come by money on! With an ageing population we’ll no doubt be urged to send Great Grandma’s Day cards soon enough. Of course, there is another way, and you don’t need to be Van Gogh to have a go at it; as ever Do it Yourself is the solution!
There are two obvious reasons – it’s far cheaper and it’s also much more personal. There are a massive range of card suppliers and craft suppliers to get you going and you don’t really have to have a creative bone in your body. Once you do get started it’s likely that you will, however, discover that we’re all more creative than we realise. Suppliers and craft stores not only provide all the bits, pieces and sticky stuff to create your own cards they can also be great sources of inspiration to get you on the road to creating a masterpiece or two.
Basic Card Kit
You’ll need some basic tools for making your own cards and there may be a few additional ones as well, however, this list will get you started.
- Cutting mats; these are essential number one, and will avoid cutting your table, kitchen surfaces and/or carpet! You can simply use an old bread board, if you like, but the modern variety of cutting mat tend to be made of plastic and are robust, offering protection for your woodwork and surfaces. Over time you’ll probably need to replace your cutting mat, but it’s a worthwhile investment.
- Craft knife: Scissors will do, but most won’t give you the neat finish that a professional craft knife will offer. These will give a nice, clean cut, and used along with a ruler will help you to get a professional finish to your cards. You can also use a Stanley knife, but craft knives are generally finer and lighter and easier to handle. A craft knife will also be the ideal tool to score the card to make it fold, without cutting fully through it by mistake.
- Glue; this may be stating the obvious, but you’ll need plenty of strong glue. The most common for craft work is the PVA type stuff, which is available from craft suppliers by the bucket load. If you plan to make all your cards yourself it’s worth stocking up on plenty of PVA glue, which is extremely affordable and safe to use.
The list above is, of course, missing the obvious; card and paper. Craft suppliers will have a huge stock of this to help you get truly creative. Also check out their ranges of rubber stamps; these are professionally designed images to print onto your cards and can help if you’re not the best at drawing! There are some stunning designs and they allow you to make a large batch of cards (at Christmas for example) in a short space of time. Most of these are moderately priced, and offer the chance to cut the costs on bulk purchasing for Christmas Greetings cards. While saving money is certainly a good reason for making your own cards, the real benefit is the personal touch. While major companies have taken the ‘personal’ out of personal cards, the DIY approach will demonstrate your card is sent with real feeling.
Creating cards with a little imagination, and a lot of glue, says far more than buying the off the shelf variety; www.imag-e-nation.com have absolutely everything you need to make that perfect statement.