Monday, October 24, 2011

HANDMADE HALLOWEEN GREETINGS

With one of my favorite holidays approaching, I've been making Halloween cards to send to friends and family. There's nothing like a handmade hello to let someone know that they are special to you. In this age of email and Facebook, I might be old-fashioned but I still prefer writing letters to electronic forms of communication! I don't have a lot of extra time these days, so I stuck with something very simple for my cards.


I just gathered up whatever I have on hand, including my handy Fiskars paper trimmer and paper punches. I have long been a fan of their products because I've always gotten great results with everything from their pinking shears to their punches. I particularly love the design of their punches like the one in the upper right hand corner of this photo because it's very easy on my hands! I don't have a lot of hand strength and I've really struggled with some companies' punch designs but these are a breeze to use.


Fiskars' portable paper rotary trimmer works great for trimming cardstock. It's compact, so it's easy to store. I also like the fact that it has easy-to-see gridded lines that make it simple to measure my cardstock and make accurate cuts.


One thing I really like about this trimmer is that it has a clear smudge guard that lets you hold things in place without getting your messy fingerprints on the paper. I'm usually stamping at the same time I'm cutting, so I would get a lot of smudges on my paper without it!


My trimmer also has a swing-out arm that extends beyond the width of the trimmer to stabilize larger scrapbooking paper.




My first card was quick and easy with some patterned Halloween cardstock and a few quick paper punches.


To give my card a little pumpkin personality, I used Fiskars' adorable Happy Jacks border punch, which lets you easily create continuous borders. 


All you do is punch a section and then use the built-in visual guideline of pumpkins to line up your next punched section for a seamless line of happy pumpkins.


For the card's central medallion, I just used my circle punch to cut a green circle, stamped it with a Halloween greeting, framed it with a black punched circle and a patterned circle that I then scalloped-cut with my scalloped pinking shears (but you could also of course use the scalloped decorative paper scissors).


For my other card, I cut a piece of black cardstock on my trimmer, then switched the blade on it with a scalloped one to create the orange inner border. I can cut straight scalloped lines much faster with this handy set-up than I can with my scalloped pinking shears. However, I still had to use my shears for the curved cuts like the oval black frame shown here. 


Then I just marked a spooky design on an oval piece of green cardstock with one of my rubber stamps—a witch in flight with wisps of stars, pumpkins, and skulls in her wake. A strip of orange pom-pom trim adds a final flourish to the design. 


It all came together so quickly. For me, the key is keeping things simple so I can actually get all of my cards made!


If you haven't already, I hope you'll give holiday cardmaking a try. With the price of cards these days, it's an affordable alternative that also allows you to express your creativity. I realize there's an initial cost in buying the supplies but the punches will last forever and a little cardstock goes a long way! You can find Fiskars seasonal and everyday punches at Jo-Ann Fabric and Crafts stores. Come back later this weekend to see a fun idea for a fall/Thanksgiving card project.

8 comments:

  1. Your Halloween cards look fabulous.

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  2. I love those cards, and I like your style!!

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  3. The lucky people on your list will love your cards. Very special.

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  4. Very cute! Can't wait to see the fall stuff...

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  5. What bewitching ideas for Halloween!

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  6. Halloween is a favorite around my house as well. I will have to share your spooky cards with my daughter, who loves making her own cards.

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  7. I'm old-school too in that I love to send and receive handwritten correspondences. I love your cards!

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  8. Your cards are just too cute. I've tried to stay away from the scrapbooking stuff since I have too many other expensive hobbies already. My husband might leave me if I add another to the mix! (just kidding)

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