Sunday, September 20, 2009

Recyling old Christmas cards into gift tags

My brother and his wife both have paper routes, so you can imagine they get quite the stash of Christmas cards (and gifts) every year! Since he would usually just throw away the cards when the season is over, my brother donated them to me. :) I'm not sure if all of these cards came from one year, but I'll tell you in a minute how many tags I got out of them. (You won't believe it!)

These range in size from the largest Nestabilities Labels 8 to the second-smallest. I put them in baggies for my mother so she can find just the right tag, according to size. They're not fussy (i.e. no coordinating cardstock backing), but they'll make beautiful gift tags. And you can't beat the price! :)

Now check out how thick these stacks are and take a guess at how many tags there are altogether:

Okay, here's the breakdown, from smallest to largest:

91 smallest (about 1.75x2.5")
52 next size (about 2.25x3")
33 next size (about 3x4")
73 next size (about 3.5x4.75")
81 largest size (about 4x5.5")

For a grand total of 330 tags. This will last my parents a long, long time - even if they share with every relative within driving distance! :)

You know I'm addicted to my Nesties now, right? I had so much fun cranking these through my Cuttlebug. There's something so satisfying about cranking out this perfect shape in five seconds, instead of the minute it used to take me to cut out each shape by hand!

Another thing I absolutely loved was being able to perfectly "center" my image, since the Nestabilities are open in the middle.

And one last tip ... If you want to get the most out of your cards, check the backs for mini pictures or coordinating images. The majority of the smallest tags came from the backs of the cards - the part most people would usually throw out when they do this type of project. And if the back was colored or patterned, I usually got at least two of the smallest tags out of them.


Esther said...

What a GREAT idea! Love all those tags, they look so nice cut out with the Nesties! Your mom ought to have lots of fun with those!

jemilyea said...

Christmas card crafts are some of my favorite projects! Your gift tags are lovely. I grew up cutting up old cards for gift tags, but we don't have such nice shapes.

I have access to AccuCut/Ellison die cut machines. From green cards I cut out Christmas trees and wreaths. I have stockings from red cards. One year I took blue/snow card fronts and cut out captions for the snow-related bulletin board I was putting up.

I also enjoy decoupaging (sp?)/ mosaic-style with cards. (Example: enlarge a holly leaf shape to 8.5 x 11. Cut out green cards in all sorts of shapes and glue them on the leaf mosaic style. Then arrange the leaves for giant wreath on a bulletin board.) I have photographs somewhere.

More card ideas are always welcome!

Sophia said...

I love the idea of using certain colored cards for certain shapes! I need to remember that if I ever run across nice-sized dies for my Cuttlebug!