Transforming clutter: clear out your old cards

Greeting cards are fun to receive, but do you ever wonder what to do with them afterwards? It’s difficult to throw them away because of the sentiment they carry, but you don’t want to just keep them stashed away in an old shoe box, either. Here are a few craft ideas that help you make use of your greeting cards.

Decoupage jewellery boxes. If you have an old wooden box that could use a little sprucing up, covering it with greeting cards could be the perfect way to make it fancier. By simply cutting out the designs that you like from your old greeting cards and sticking them on with a strong-bonding glue, you can design a colourful collage and seal it with glitter.

Recycled gift accessories. And just because you’ve already received the card from someone else doesn’t mean that you can’t reuse it to pass along another gift. If you cut out the front covers of two greeting cards, you can glue them to the sides of a small ordinary gift bag to make unique personalised cards. Greeting card covers also make great gift tags when cut into smaller pieces. Simply punch a hole through them, thread with ribbon, and you can attach it to your gift.

Simple craft activities for kids. For your really little ones, it can be difficult to find crafts projects that don’t involve scissors or glue. But with a hole punch and some old greeting cards, you can keep them occupied for hours. One fun idea is to punch holes along the sides of a greeting card and then attach a piece of ribbon to the back. Your kids can then “knit” ribbon of various colours through the holes.

A jigsaw puzzle. This idea requires you to first make a collage with your old greeting cards on a large piece of cardboard. Once you’re done, you can then use a permanent marker to draw whimsical lines that run parallel and intersect so that when you cut them out, they resemble puzzle pieces. You can also create mini-puzzles using just one card.

Holiday decorations. Greeting cards also make great ornaments for Easter and Christmas. You can use an origami guide to create a star to place on the top of your Christmas tree, or you can try a simpler approach. To get the kids involved, you can trace circles on greeting card covers (use a plastic cup to help keep it tidy) and then cut them out. You can glue them to construction paper or felt circles of the same size, or you can glue two of them to each other. These circles, once attached to ribbon, make good decorations for the mantle or doorknobs.

These activities prove that clearing out your greeting cards doesn’t have to be a chore. They also give you an alternative to throwing away little notes and sentiment that mean a lot to you. All you need is scissors, glue, and the will to turn them into art.

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