Once our Save-the-Dates were done, it was time to package them up. We’d decided to send them out with our Christmas cards. It saves a little bit of postage, and it’s a little like a Christmas present! Is it too self-centered to think that other people might view an invite to our wedding as a present? I, for some crazy reason, decided to make the Christmas cards. Here is what they ended up looking like:
Argyle makes us both happy, and I was doubly happy that I got to use my favourite apple green in the cards too. To start, I put on some holiday music (I’m a geek for it. Especially BTO’s Taking Care of Christmas. They spoofed their own song!)
I used blank white cards from Michaels – the kind that aren’t even folded yet (but they do have a crease). I just wanted the pattern on the front, so I taped two pieces of paper together to make a mask that would cover up the back, and prevent me from stamping on to my craft mat. The craft mat could take it, but I was going to be doing so many, I didn’t want that ink to smudge onto the clean cards if I wasn’t careful.
I used the scrap paper that I’d used to test colours and how to line up these stamps.
Here’s my little set-up with a blank card inserted under the paper on the left. If you’re wondering why I didn’t fold them, thus hiding the back from the evil inky stamp, I tried that, and it stamped funny around the fold because it was a teeny bit thicker.
The stamps I used were the A Little Argyle set from PaperTrey Ink. I could go on and on about the awesomeness of PTI, so I might save that for another post. My perfect green was ColorBox’s Moss Green pigment ink. I inked up the larger of the two argyle strips with that.
Then I stamped it on the card. I ignored the patchyness of the ink for now. Because of the size of card I had, I had to do 4 passes with the stamp. In the photo above, the diamonds don’t go all the way to the right-hand edge of the card – it just needs two more diamonds in each row! And I wanted them 4 diamonds high.
Now that I had all my diamonds in place, it was time to address the ones that were patchy. I wasn’t going for perfection, as they are handmade, but I wanted a bit more coverage from the colour in all the diamonds. That’s where the single diamond that PTI includes in the set comes in:
Ink that baby up, then just line it up over a patchy diamond and stamp away! I love clear stamps because it makes this so easy. Imagine trying to do this with a wood-handled rubber stamp? Practically impossible!
I didn’t re-ink the single diamond after every single stamp, as I didn’t want it to be too obvious that I’d gone over some diamonds.
The red lines were faster, because I had a regular-sized red inkpad (not a tiny cats’ eye like the green one!), and I didn’t have to go back with the single stitched diamond stamp. Large expanses of stamp are harder to ink evenly than a thin design like the stitches.
Then came the sentiment (a Hero Arts stamp), in the same red as the stitches (Colorbox Cranberry).
Then I decided to have fun with the envelopes. This single diamond is bigger than the diamonds on the cards, I love the oversize look of it!
I had meant to get us a pretty address stamp, maybe even a calligraphy one, but Christmas snuck up on me, so I ran our envelopes through our printer to get our return address on them. I think I’ll still order the address stamp, for thank you notes, and invites and such.
Each envelope got stuffed with a holiday card, a save the date, and our Christmas letter. Some years I write our news in the cards, but we’re sending out more than normal because we’re combining them with save the dates, so I was in full support of Cinnamon Buns writing the Christmas letter.
I got in to stamping in a big way last year, because I decided to make holiday cards that year too. Now my stamp collection is threatening to take over the office!
Do you make your holiday cards?