|New York Stationery Show 1998|
Even though I closed Avant Carde ten years ago, I still love making cards. Whether it be party invitations, a one-of-a-kind birthday card, or Thanksgiving placecards, the process of cutting, designing, gluing and sewing is a kind of therapy for me.
I haven't made holiday cards for a few years due to hectic show schedules, but this year is different. A hiatus from my design business means I have time to celebrate Christmas in more personal ways.
2010 was an exciting year for our family, so I thought a photo mosaic would be a good place to start. I selected a few of my favorite digital photo and used Big Huge Labs to create the mosaic. It's as easy as downloading your photos and choosing a layout. Voila!
My first goal in making anything is using what I have. But I didn't have card stock for the backing so, on a hunch, headed to the 99 cents store. Turns out they sell large white poster boards for 50 cents each. On my way to check out, I found something packaged as "tissue paper" (a very thin printed plastic) with atypical holiday colors. I scooped it up not knowing what I'd do with it...but I knew I liked it! I hit Big Lots on the way home and found green #10 envelopes marked way way down. I purchased the basics for less than $10.00, or 20 cents per card.
I love to recycled old sewing patterns and especially love the printed instruction pages. Usually they're yellowed with age and have lots of interesting graphics and lines. They're sort of a trademark in my work and wanted to incorporate them, as well.
The envelope dictated the card shape- skinny horizontal- 3.5 x 8.5. The poster board provided the base, topped with a layer of instruction paper, and the printed photo mosaic on the left. After cutting the three layers, (and ironing the instruction sheets), I lightly glued them together before sewing with a zigzag stitch.
Hmmm... but what about the right hand side? This is where the fun started!
I bought a laminator at Costco last month. I'd never used one before, except to laminate a couple of photos at Staples. I've been following Mark Montano's blog which includes several projects with laminated design work. I was excited to experiment! I topped the poinsettia paper with thin strips of metallic electrician's tape, gold and silver glitter, and the holiday message that I printed on recycled Fed Ex envelopes. Into the laminator it went...and out the other end came a very cool conglomeration of sparkly paper and plastic. I trimmed the sheets into smaller pieces.
(I like shiny things.)
I decided to use the "tissue paper" that was really plastic paper as a liner/wrapper for the card. I cut the pieces to size and wrapped the card- imbuing it with a sense of mystery and protecting it from potential postal pitfalls.