5 Handmade Card Making Ideas to Jazz Up Your Cards

Are you longing to make some homemade cards, but short on ideas? Let me help! These five handmade card making ideas each feature different materials, and are sure to spark your creativity.

handmade card making ideas

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I used to think there was no way my handmade cards would ever rival a fancy store-bought card. Those big card companies have such fancy technology nowadays, to print foil, glitter, embossings, and so many other snazzy colors and embellishments.

But, boy, was I wrong!

I’ve come a long way from my teenage card making years, when I relied almost entirely on stickers and clip art from those chintzy greeting-card-making software programs… and my cards looked, well, pretty elementary. Which is fine for a kid, but not so much for an adult!

So, last year, when I decided to start making handmade card designs again, I knew I wanted to up my card making game! And, I found plenty of ways to do that.

Thanks to the lovely array of papers, ribbons, washi tape, stamps, and other goodies that are available in craft stores and online, you can be inspired with lots of greeting card making ideas. And, it’s absolutely possible to make cards that are not just ‘as good as’ store-bought ones… but BETTER!

And, of course, more special too. Because who wouldn’t love to receive a sweet handmade card that you actually made especially for them, that’s one-of-a-kind and didn’t just come off a store shelf?!

5 Handmade Card Making Ideas to Jazz Up Your Cards

If you want to jazz up your homemade cards, delight the people you’re making them for, and maybe even fool them into thinking that card was professionally produced… Try out these handmade card making ideas!

1) Stamp background + colored cardstock

Layering, layering, layering… this is one of the best tricks to make your card look like a million bucks! For this birthday card, I used the “Wish Big” Peek-A-Boo Parts stamp set from Hero Arts, to create the fun cake-and-confetti background. And then, I layered that with metallic gold and purple textured cardstocks, with a “happy birthday” stamp from this Sweet’n’Sassy stamp set.

card making ideas for birthday

You can imagine how many handmade birthday card making ideas you could get out of this one (Hero Arts) stamp set! Different colored confetti backgrounds, layered with different papers, not to mention all the cute little sentiments. Hero Arts has several of these ‘Peek-A-Boo Parts’ sets right now, that are just TOO CUTE. (I have two others, the ‘All My Heart’ Valentine set, and the ‘Galaxy’ set, and they are so adorable and useful!)

2) Easy patterned paper + washi tape

You want easy card making ideas that won’t take a lot of time to create? Grab a festive set of papers, like this Sunny Studios ‘Surprise Party’ paper pack, and use them as card backgrounds! Again, like I said before, layering is key for great handmade card making ideas. And what could be easier than a layered background that’s already created for you?

birthday card making ideas

For this card, I used one of those cute papers from the Sunny Studios ‘Surprise Party’ bundle, attached to the card blank with Scrapbook.com adhesive. And then, all I did for the rest of the card was stick a piece of gold glitter washi tape across the middle, cut out a circle (with this easy 1.5” circle punch), and then I stamped it with some of those cutesy birthday sentiments from the Hero Arts set I mentioned in #1 above.

3) Use washi tape to create a background

Want some easy card making ideas for beginners? Nothing could be quite as easy as washi tape! And sure, washi makes a great embellishment on a card that’s already layered (which is how I use it most of the time), but you can also create a whole background with it. How’s that for fun?

thank you card ideas

Bonus points if you grab a coordinated washi tape set, where all the tapes match, so there’s no guesswork about which colors or patterns pair well together. Personally, though, I prefer to buy single tapes (I get most of mine from various Etsy sellers). That way, I won’t end up with a set of, say, a dozen tapes, but only two or three that I actually use.

4) Stencil background with gelatos

I don’t know about you, but I love a good shimmer… and Faber-Castell Gelatos Iridescents sets really deliver on that. They’re my favorite way to create a background with stencils! Seriously, you can get so many great handmade card making ideas just from stencils. Just mix the gelatos pigment with water, position your stencil in place and secure with washi tape, and use a blending tool like this one to ‘pounce’ the color on (use an up-and-down motion, rather than side-to-side, to prevent the color from bleeding underneath the stencil).

fairy kisses birthday card

This is one of my favorite handmade birthday card designs that I’ve made… I used this Scrapbook.com stars stencil to create the background on hot pink cardstock, combined with the adorable stamps from this Hero Arts ‘Fairy Kisses’ stamp set, and a strip of washi tape across the bottom of the card. (If you’re wondering how I colored in the fairy, I actually used those same gelatos for that part too! That way, the fairy had a shimmery, magical look about her.)

fairy kisses birthday card

5) Add a bow or 3D sticker for that special finishing touch!

This last way to jazz up your handmade cards, is to add a 3D element, such as a bow or three-dimensional sticker. Ribbons can also be pretty, when attached to a card in the same manner as washi tape.

For this card though, instead of attaching a strip of ribbon, I just tied a piece into a bow, and attached it with a dot of Aleene’s tacky glue. The silver star washi tape looked great already by itself, but the bow just elevates it to a whole other level of cuteness!

By far, the best inspiration I’ve gotten for handmade card making ideas, has come from the stamp sets. So many birthday card making ideas arise from the Wish Big set, and how about the cute card making ideas you could get from that Fairy Kisses set? So adorable.

And if you’re wondering where to find the best stamps for card making, Scrapbook.com is a wonderful source for many different brands (Hero Arts, Catherine Pooler, and Altenew are my faves), and Sweet’n’Sassy stamps makes some great ones too.

So, are you excited to make some sweet cards + make your friends and fam feel extra special and loved? Tell me about it!

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Marci March 26, 2021, 8:36 am

    Beautiful cards! Thanks for all the tips! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

    • Barbara Austin March 26, 2021, 1:35 pm

      You’re welcome Marci! Glad you enjoyed them 😉

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