Upcycling Christmas Cards

Hey guys! Happy 2017. New year. Clean slate.

This is my first post of the year. I’ve been busy taking it easy and enjoying the season. I’m so sad to see the holidays go, but that’s what inspired this craft:

It may be a dying tradition in this digital age, but I stillĀ LOVEĀ getting Christmas cards. I also can’t bear to part with them at the end of the year. The sparkles, the wintry scenes, the jolly characters. Each card is so warm and pretty… and someone took the time to write out a personal message, put a stamp on it, and send it in the mail. It’s a shame to just throw them away. As you might know, I’m all about reusing and recycling, so I decided a couple years back to start upcycling my Christmas cards. I save them in a special drawer and then turn them into gift tags the next year.

It’s so fun to pull out the old cards, reread them and give them new life on top of this year’s Christmas gifts. So, if you’re like me and you still have your Christmas cards laying around (or hung up)… here’s a fun and crafty way to be green.

1. SAVE OLD CHRISTMAS CARDS


2. CUT OUT SCENES FROM CHRISTMAS CARDS INTO CIRCLES, SQUARES AND RECTANGLES OF VARIOUS SIZES

3. WRITE OUT (TO: AND FROM:) LINES

4. USE TAPE TO ADHERE UPCYCLED GIFT TAGS ONTO CHRISTMAS PRESENTS


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Making Travel Shadowboxes

Each year around our anniversary, I pull out our wedding and honeymoon photo albums to spend a few blissful moments reminiscing. I realized two things: 1. We went crazy with the cameras and took an excessive amount of pictures on our trip to Paris. 2. I’m incredibly grateful that we had the good sense to save every tourist brochure, every ticket stub, and many receipts from our wanderings.

Our pictures are neatly displayed in an album, but the mementos somehow got shoved in the back of a tourist guide book that was practically covered in cob webs inside a basement cabinet. I’m not kidding you guys – there was screaming involved in the recovery mission! As I started thumbing through the pile of museum passes and ticket stubs, it struck me that these mementos are just as beautiful and meaningful as our photos, and they deserve to be presented as such.

I was inspired to organize our souvenirs into a shadowbox after coming across this project picture from Athletes Abroad on Pinterest. Cute, right?

Courtesy: Athletes Abroad
Courtesy: Athletes Abroad

I spent an afternoon assembling my own personalized shadowbox and as I was working, I got a few more ideas for mementos to save when we travel to Iceland next month.

Here’s a list of materials to create a shadowbox:

1. A picture frame that has some depth between the glass and background. I used an 8×8 frame. (Craft stores also call them memory boxes)
2. Scrapbook paper to use as a background
3. Photos that can be cut into letters or shapes
4. Museum passes/ticket stubs
5. Paper restaurant menus (don’t steal the actual menus!)
6. Drink Coasters
7. Wine corks/Beer & Liquor caps from the local bottles and brews
8. Stickers that evoke a memory
9. Gift shop knick-knacks like key chains/magnets/small figurines
10. Hotel note pads
11. Dinner credit card receipts to remember a special meal

I started my project by choosing a nice grey polka-dot background that wouldn’t overwhelm my mementos. Cut your paper to fit the frame by tracing around the cardboard backing.

Use pictures or brochures to cut out the letters for your travel location.

Since I’m not a big crafter I had no idea there was such a thing as glue dots. They are AWESOME! The dots securely hold your mementos in place against the background paper, and it’s super easy to work the dispenser!