You just got a beautiful greeting card in the mail. It's so much better than a bill or a flyer isn't it? It brightens your day and lets you know somebody's thinking about you. It's a little moment of happy pause in your day
We all get a little thrill when we see some fun snail mail in the mailbox but, what are you supposed to do with that greeting card after... say... a month?
(I'm flashing back to the Seinfeld episode where Jerry throws a thank you card in the garbage only for the recipient to spot it and... well... it doesn't go well!).
I don't like a lot of clutter but I always struggle with throwing out cards - especially when somebody has taken the time to send me one or to write a lovely note inside it. So I've gotten pretty crafty at repurposing greeting cards. Here are some of my favourite ways to reuse them!
1. Turn a Greeting Card Into Wall Art
Greeting cards are essentially little art prints. An easy way to reuse them is to simply cut the back off and voila - you have some art! You can frame your new art print and hang it on the wall or leave it unframed and tack it up to your bulletin board, use it to decorate your work cubicle, post it on your fridge or put it next to your computer where you'll see it every day.
2. Create a Greeting Card Gallery Wall
Take the greeting card as art idea one step further and instead of hanging just one piece of art, frame multiple cards and arrange them on your wall in a fun gallery. You can do this by theme - like cards that are all flowers or botanicals, or by colour - cards that all have green running through them. Get creative!
3. Turn Your Greeting Card Into a Postcard
Pass that lovely moment of receiving snail mail on to another friend by using the front flap of your card as postcard (if there's no writing on the back). Check with your postal service to see if they'll accept it as a postcard without an envelope first. If they don't, you can still use it as a postcard but pop it in an envelope before mailing it.
4. Use Old Greeting Cards in Junk Journals and Scrapbooks
I use old greeting cards in my gratitude journal. It's a collage journal where I decorate the pages with repurposed mixed media items - think used postage stamps, scraps of paper, mini envelopes, bits of ribbon etc. Not only does it reuse the artwork but it evokes the memory of the person who sent it to me and the joy it gave me to receive it! I also use the back flap of the card - usually it has a nice texture for writing on in my journal.
I've also reused the envelopes - postage and postal marks make for interesting decoration! You can do the same with scrapbooking.
5. Create Mixed Media Art With Old Greeting Cards
Mixed media artists love repurposing older items in their art work. Don't forget greeting cards! You can cut the artwork out, make geometric cuts, paint and embellish the art work - whatever your imagination suggests.
6. Turn Greeting Cards Into Gift Tags
If you've got cards with great artwork, cut the art work and use it for a gift tag. The sturdy card stock is perfect for attaching to a gift or a gift bag. Punch a hole in the top and thread some ribbon through it. You can also write a little note and a "to" and "from" on the back!
7. Turn Old Christmas Cards into Tree Ornaments
Speaking of cutting out artwork and punching holes and threading ribbon, you can turn old Christmas card artwork into tree ornaments! If you want to make them a little sturdier, glue them to some heavier cardstock and then trim around edges of the artwork. If you use red, green or other coloured cardstock, you can even leave a border around the artwork for a little extra decorative touch.
8. Decorate Gift Boxes or Storage Boxes With Old Cards
I went through a whole découpage phase when I was in my very early 20s. I found it relaxing from university course work! I would paint plain, heavy cardboard boxes I got at the craft store, decorate them with cut out bits from magazines, old cards and anything else that caught my eye. And then I'd finish it off with a few coats of ModPodge. Today, I do the same thing with any ugly box that I use for storing things in! I just cover it up with paper, old cards and paint and there we go! You can also do this with furniture or anything else you want to jazz up!
There are pre-schools, teachers and community children's programs that are always looking for art supplies and they can do lots with the front flaps of used greeting cards! Ask in your local community facebook groups, local daycares or elementary schools or contact your local parks and recreation department.
10. Make a New Card!
Use the art work on your card to create a new card and send it to somebody special! Add a few extra embellishments and some words from the heart and send it out into the world.
I hope this list gives you some easy ways to repurpose these little works of art that people have sent your way!