‘Tis the season to send and receive Christmas and holiday cards. Instead of tossing or recycling the cards, here are some creative ways to reuse them. Many of these ideas also work for reusing birthday cards and other greeting cards.
1. Create gift tags for holiday packages like we did in the photo above. Use pinking shears or scrapbooking scissors to cut fancy edges, sprinkle with a little glue and glitter if you wish, or simply cut a simple tag from a pretty part of the design. A hole punch is handy for stringing ribbon or yarn through the card.
2. Save money by making your own holiday gift bags; simply glue colorful holiday card cut-outs on paper bags.
3. Create new Christmas cards by gluing the fronts of used cards onto plain paper or card stock.
4. Make a seasonal mosaic to hang on the wall by arranging card pieces in a pleasing arrangement and gluing on cardboard or construction paper.
5. Make Christmas placemats. You can ‘laminate’ the finished mat with clear contact paper if you wish.
6. Make holiday ornaments like these geometric paper hanging balls from Snow and Graham. Little kids may prefer to simply cut out pictures from cards, decorate them a bit and hang them on the tree. By the way, when you’re cutting out designs cookie cutters make nifty templates. Just trace around the cutter lightly with a pencil and cut away.
7. Here’s a craft idea that young children can do: make holiday magnets by gluing cut outs from cards on flat magnets. Sometimes you can find unused magnets stuck in the ‘yellow’ phone books.
8. Cut the cards into strips and make old-fashioned paper chains by gluing the strips into circles and interconnecting them. Hang the garlands on the tree or wrap them around a staircase railing.
9. Another kids’ craft: make a holiday bookmark by gluing a vertical strip cut from a card onto a pretty ribbon.
10. Make placecards for each seat at the holiday dinner. Sometimes you can utilize the plain back of a card cut into a rectangle for the placecard, which can then be decorated with a small cutout or sticker. Write each guest’s name on a card and everyone will know exactly where to sit.
11. Scrapbookers can use holiday card cutouts to decorate pages.
12. Make napkin rings by cutting 1-inch pieces from a paper towel tube or toilet paper tube and gluing pretty cut-outs on it.
13. At the end of the season, send unwanted holiday cards to St. Jude’s Card Recycling, 100 St. Jude Street, P.O. Box 60100, Boulder City, NV 89006.
P.S. You might also enjoy “One Family’s Real Simple Christmas.”