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Category:  Articles » Home & Garden » Crafts Hobbies

 

Recycle Greeting Cards For Fun and Profit

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         Views: 1177
2009-11-30 06:56:19     
Article by Rebecca Froebel

Recycling old greeting cards has become a favorite way for seniors to earn a little extra income. As a crafter myself, I am always on the look out for something new to craft. A recent visit to a local senior center showed just how popular this new venture has become. One whole wall displayed cards waiting for an eager buyer such as myself to purchase them. The price was right at only fifty cents a card.

Old cards from all the seasons and holidays also work excellent for building three-dimensional pictures. I will share a quick way to make three-dimensional pictures that allow you to recycle at the same time.

Some crafters believe you should cut out all the usable parts and bag them according to item, but I prefer to leave them on the card until I am ready to use the part I need. This way the edges do not get tattered while bouncing around in a container. You want a nice freshly cut edge for most of your work.

The tools required will be a sharp scissor, round toothpicks, an exacter knife, Styrofoam cups, old cards, hot glue, and matting. A flat piece of packing Styrofoam or foam insulation works great for the mat. Foam poster board can be purchased, but is normally to thin and must be stacked for the toothpicks to hold tightly.

Once you have gathered all your tools you will need to decide what type of 3-dimensional picture to make. As an example, a winter scene is easy. Most of the picture pieces reside on Christmas cards. Pine trees, snow, birds, deer, blue sky and even a nice campfire are examples of pieces for your collage. Cut the pieces you wish to use in your picture and arrange them on the matting board for approval before their final placement. I find taking a digital picture and printing it off on plain paper is the easiest way to remember where everything goes.

The height of each piece is created by cutting small pieces of the cups and putting a toothpick through them. Start with the bottom layer first and build the heights of picture up as you go. Determine how far from the matting you want the piece and start your gluing at the place on the toothpick that will sit directly on the matting. Do not cut the rest of the toothpick yet. Place hot glue between each layer of Styrofoam to make them sturdy. Glue the picture piece to the top of the foam and then cut the bottom end of the wooden toothpick off so that it will poke into the foam at exactly the height you want that piece to stick up. Continue your picture until you have it complete. Place it in a frame or build a box with glass on top to preserve your picture forever.

You may also just glue the pieces to your matting without toothpicks, but I have found that I often add in more pieces as I see something else that would make the picture even better. This is easy to do if you have used the toothpicks.

Enjoyable designing to all as you play your part in recycling old greeting cards into new ones or beautiful pictures. When you get good at creating three-dimensional pictures or even new cards, take them to a craft fair and watch them sell like crazy!

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