Galactic Hot Dogs

Homemade Cards and Gift Tags

Trust me, people will look at the back of the card to find your special signature when you give them a homemade greeting card. When you think about it, what could be better than giving a card that captures your own special feelings for the recipient?

Lourie Russell of Alexandria, Virginia, does a beautiful job with greeting cards and stamps. She purchases blank paper and envelopes at a craft store and decorates them with a variety of stamps and ink. She also uses different textured and colored papers that she cuts to fit the card for special effects. A touch of glitter for the right card and a handwritten message is the finishing touch. You always know when a Lourie card is coming—her trademark of a tiny engine is always stamped on the back.

You don't have to be an artist to create a homemade card—a blank note card and envelope, a rubber stamp and stamp pad, and some markers would fit the bill. Simply stamp the front with the stamp and write your message inside. You can stamp a matching stamp on the back or side of the envelope. It's the thought that counts, and your written thoughts will be appreciated long after the gift is gone. Or try this simple design to relay your greetings.

Card Creations

Present Pointers

Making greeting cards is a fun project for anyone, including kids. You might want to give someone on your gift list a pack of blank cards, stamps, stamp pads, magic markers, textured paper, scissors, and glue and package them in a keepsake box.

Time frame: Half to one hour

Level: Easy

What you need:

  • Rub-on transfers and Popsicle stick, or packs of paper cutouts and white glue (found in craft stores)
  • Blank note card and envelope (You can buy these in packs at craft or stationery stores.)
  • Hole punch
  • Matching thin satin ribbon
  • Fine tipped marker
  1. Use a rub-on transfer to create a design on the card by placing the design centered on the front with the tacky side down. Rub the transfer with a Popsicle stick until it is completely transferred to the paper. Gently lift a corner of the transfer off the paper. If there are areas that aren't transferred completely, rub again with the Popsicle stick until transferred.
  2. If using cutouts, glue a random pattern of paper cutouts on the front of the card. I've used Christmas cutouts for Christmas greetings, hearts for Valentine's Day, and everyday shapes such as leaves, musical notes, flowers, and so on for everyday greeting cards.
  3. Using the hole punch, make two holes in the front center top of the card. Thread the ribbon through the holes from the back to the front and tie a bow in the ends, so the bow is on the front, top of your greeting card.
  4. Write your message inside the card and place in the envelope. If desired, decorate the envelope with matching transfers or cutouts on the back flap or front left side.

More on: Crafts for Kids


Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Making Great Gifts © 2001 by Marilee LeBon. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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