During a recent major clean out at home where no drawer was left unsorted I found way too many out of date business cards. There were cards from previous jobs, old addresses and positions. They were all still in mint condition, some in unopened boxes so it seemed a shame to simply ditch them in the bin.
I gathered up some essential supplies such as glue and scissors and the hunted for some bits and pieces to embellish each card. The beauty of this project is your ‘canvas’ is small so it doesn’t require a lot of materials or time. For all the ideas I first gave the cards a coat of white gesso. This was necessary for my gift cards as all the cards had been printed on both sides. If your old cards have only been printed on one side you can skip this step.
Idea 1: Using an old teabag I stained the book pages. Once they were dry I gave them a quick press with a cool iron. I cut the pages into strips and glued them onto the card. Play around with the placement. It looks better if each strip is a little ‘off’. I waited for the paper to dry completely before attaching the piece of flat braid. Punch a hole in the corner to attach to your gift.
Idea 2: For this card idea I used some hand dyed paper towel. I stamped the flower pattern randomly over the paper towel before cutting to size and glueing to card. You may find it a little easier to cut the paper slightly larger than the card, glueing then trimming to size once the glue has dried. I added an upcycled clothing badge to the centre of the flower but you could add sequins, beads and/or glitter.
Idea 3: This idea took a little longer than the others but was still quite simple. I cut a piece of felt to the same size as the card. I ironed scraps of fusible webbing to some small pieces of fabric. After peeling away the backing paper I placed the fabric onto the felt and fused in place. Be careful it easy to burn your fingers when using small pieces. I sewed some buttons in a contrasting colour on to the fabric before glueing the felt/fabric sandwich onto the card. For some added colour you may choose to machine sew a row of stitching around the edge of the card.
These ideas are just a few of the many ways you could decorate and embellish old business cards into unique gift tags; try red/green/gold for Christmas, pastels shades for a newborn, stamp ‘50’, ‘60’ slightly off centre for a significant birthday or even paint a watercolor wash over the card before stamping and embossing an image.
If you want to have a go but don’t have any cards let me know… I’m still drowning in them.