Supplies to start making your own greeting cards

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Greeting cards are an important part of everyday life. We send them to commemorate graduation ceremonies, congratulate new parents or send birthday wishes. The “greetings” sent can console, sympathize, or confess. Whatever a greeting card says, it helps us build and nurture relationships with those we love, both near and far. Nothing is more personal to these relationships than creating your own cards. A few simple craft supplies are all you need to get started.

Most of the supplies needed to make quality cards overlap with scrapbooking and general DIY supplies. You might already have much of what you’ll need, but if not, consider this list a good place to start. From birthday cards to Father’s Day messages, your DIY greeting cards will be loved by anyone who receives them.

Scroll down to find the perfect basic supplies to start your own card making journey.

Make a Christmas card

Photo: Photos by DRAGON IMAGES / Shutterstock

Card stock

Pack of colorful card stock for card making

Blick | $ 17.93

To start making your own greeting cards, you’ll need a variety of card stock. This paper tends to be thicker and of better quality, which means your cards won’t be fragile. You can buy it in various packs which give you maximum choice when you start crafting. Choose jewelry tones, summery colors or pastels. You can also find leaves with different colors on each side. Shimmering metallics also add a touch of whimsy. When choosing your card stock, pay attention to the size of the sheet and the weight (thickness) of the paper.

Paper cutting tools and surfaces

Letter opener or letter opener for scrapbooking and card making

Photo: TOLIKOFF PHOTOGRAPHY Stock Photos / Shutterstock

With your new, brightly colored card stock, there are several ways to ensure clean, precise cuts. Many scrapbookers and card makers use paper cutters. These usually incorporate a blade and a base that make it easy to measure. Be sure to choose a trimmer with a base size to suit your paper sizes – often 12 inches will do. This Dahle reel mower is an affordable rotary mower (i.e. using a small rotating blade held under a plastic shield). The plastic guide makes it easy to cut straight lines.

For more complex cuts, you will need an X-Acto knife. A self-healing cutting mat will protect your table and give you a safe surface to work on. These rugs are available in a variety of sizes. As the name suggests, they miraculously manage to withstand intense craftsmanship. Of course, good quality craft scissors are also a must. (For creative edges, try these funky scissors you probably remember from grade school.)

Adhesives of all kinds

Elmers Glue and Adhesive for Card Making

Blick | $ 2.43

The adhesive options are virtually endless when working with paper objects. For starters, a classic glue stick is simple and effective. An adhesive dot runner is also a good option. Simply trace along the edges of a piece of paper and press to adhere. There are also double sided glue dots and double sided tape. If you work with photographs, these mounting squares are acid free to protect your memories.

Stamps and ink

Stamp frames for scrapbooking and card making

StampWorlds | $ 5.80 (one stamp)

At the start of your card making journey, building up a collection of stamps and ink pads will come naturally. Some stamps you will use year after year, such as a birthday cake, a Hanukkah menorah, or an emphatic “Merry Christmas”. There are stamps for virtually every occasion and taste. You can find them on Etsy, Amazon, or your local craft store.

Check out these frolicking kittens and happy cacti. Take a witchy turn with these moon phases or bring a vegetal charm with these delicate flowers. Wherever your taste takes you, you’ll need archival quality ink pads in your favorite colors.

Markers and pens

Markers and colored pencils for card making

Photo: SAMUI Stock Photos / Shutterstock

Quality markers will help you take your card making to the next level. Blick Studio brush markers are double ended and come in a variety of color schemes. Calligraphy markers are specially designed for writing. They come in colorful sets and precision tips for the pros. If you want to learn more about adding your own classic calligraphy using fountain pens, check out My Modern Met’s guide to getting started with calligraphy.

Watercolor pencils are another option for decorating your cards. 90s style glitter gel pens can also add flair. Acrylic and watercolor paints are another way to express yourself by turning your cards into miniature works of art.

Envelopes, embossing and more

There are countless other craft supplies that can be used to create great looking greeting cards. Enhance your homemade birthday card with glitter or small Christmas trees to decorate your holiday missives. To send your cards you will of course need envelopes, which can be decorated to match.

Embossing is a technique used by card makers to add embossed or shiny stamp effects to your cards. Watch the video above for an introduction to embossing. Some basic supplies include embossing powder and a heat source. For more relevant supplies, check out this article from Klompen Stampers. It’s time to start creating and sending your own handmade greeting cards.

Make a greeting card for valentine's day

Photo: EXOPIXEL Stock Photos / Shutterstock

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