I absolutely love receiving Christmas cards. It’s one of my favorite parts of the holiday season and something I look forward to all year. But then what do you do with them when the holidays are over? I hung onto my cards for years, not wanting to get rid of them but not knowing what to do with them. Then one day, I found an image online for upcycled Christmas card books. SOLD. I made my backlog of cards into books and have been making Christmas card books ever since.
Over the last few years, I’ve developed a few techniques for my books to preserve the cards as well as the letters and photos for years to come. As you finish transitioning out of the holiday season and taking down the Christmas decorations (yes, some of us are still doing that in mid-January), think about upcycling your cards into a cute little book for the living room bookshelves or coffee table.
Upcycled Christmas card books supplies:
- Old Christmas cards
- Book rings
- Cardstock (I always use red)
- #10 envelopes
- Scotch scrapbookers glue or another scrapbooking glue
I also use a paper cutter for slicing the cardstock and a three-hole punch for punching the Christmas cards. I own both the paper cutter and three-hole punch I’ve linked here and can’t recommend them enough.
Gather your Christmas cards, letters, and photos from the past holiday season.
You’ll actually be using the three-hole punch to punch two holes in each Christmas card. The way my three-hole punch is designed, you can’t center the holes for most Christmas cards, which is okay with me. If you want perfectly centered cards, use a single hole punch.
For smaller cards, you may only be able to punch one hole, which is fine. I place the smaller cards toward the middle of the book so they’ll stay anchored.
Cut the cardstock into two pieces so you have 8″ x 5.5″ pieces of cardstock. The number of pieces you’ll need for the book will depend on the number of letters and photos you’re including in the book. Again, you won’t be able to center the cardstock holes. If you want centered holes, use a single hole punch.
Choose one Christmas card to use for the cover. I like to create a small year label with red cardstock on the cover card.
There are a couple different ways I add Christmas letters to the book. For single-sided letters, I fold the letter into quarters and glue one quarter to the cardstock so you can open up the letter.
For the double-sided letters, I glue an envelope to the cardstock, and keep the letter in the envelope. I use my own business-sized envelopes, but you can use the original envelopes. Let the envelopes dry completely before adding the letters.
Typically, I also glue the photos to the cardstock. If there’s a detailed message or other info on the back you want to remember (i.e. the names and ages of the kids), you may want to write the message on the cardstock or punch the photo. Let the glue dry completely.
When you’ve finished preparing the letters and photos, arrange all of the cards, letters, and photos in the book rings. Close up the book rings. Enjoy your new upcycled Christmas card books!
Did you make your own upcycled Christmas card books?
I’d love to see them! Tag your images #RoseClearfield on Instagram or Twitter.
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