After 15+ years of paper crafting, I have a well-stocked craft room!! LOL!! It is certainly my happy place where I make lots and lots of cards.
A trick that I have learned is to only make the card front in advance – because the card front takes the most time to create. When I need a card, I look through my stash of card fronts – select the perfect one and then personalize the rest of the card for the recipient! This provides me with a lot of flexibility!!
First, this provides me with the option to change the size of the card at a later date. Most of the time, I make an A7-sized card – which is a typical size of a purchased greeting card. There are times when I make an A2-sized card for a quick note. And when making a birthday card or a sympathy card for the office, an A9-sized card is more appropriate because it provides more white space for my coworkers to write messages to the card recipient.
Second, this provides me with the option of using my computer to create and print the perfect message on the blank card base. While I have lots and lots of sentiment stamps, there are many occasions that require something unique! Composing the message on the computer helps me to organize my thoughts for a more complete and personal message.
And the last benefit, storing only card fronts requires half the storage space! It only takes a few minutes to add a coordinating stamped image on the inside of the card blank, mount the card front on the card blank and to create the coordinating envelope. Using this method of creating only card fronts, I never have to re-make a card or throw away a coordinating envelope!
To protect my stored card fronts, I purchase these 5”x7” clear plastic envelope sleeve from Clear Bags (100 bags for about $8). These bags are archival quality, acid and lignin free, and USPS approved for mailing.
To help me remember what products I used when making those card fronts, I created this cheat sheet as a quick reference. I simply jot down the products used and any tips for making the card front. This makes my life easier when I finishing the card at a later date. I simply store the cheat sheets, the card front and any duplicate card fronts in the same clear envelop sleeve. Now I know exactly which stamps, inks and cardstock that I used and I can quickly stamp the coordinating images on the inside of the card and create a coordinating envelope.
Important tip: Use the back side of the cheat sheet to: 1) annotate the card recipients – so that no one gets the same card twice; 2) record measurements of cardstock pieces – just in case you want to create the same card front again; and 3) document your inspiration for the piece – if you participated in a challenge or CASEed a particular card design from another crafter.
Click here to download a copy of the cheat-sheet. It prints four on one sheet of computer paper. I keep a stack of these cheat sheets on hand for the next time I’m creating in the craft room.
Until next time, happy crafting!