Making A Birthday Card For My Niece

Handmade cards are one of my many passions.
Handmade cards are one of my many passions.

Update: My niece wanted to open this card before any of her presents and she has told everyone that it is the best thing she received for her birthday, which shows handmade gifts are a hit.

This is another hub about card making inspiration. My niece's sixth birthday is coming up on May 30, so I am creating a special card to commemorate her special day. Making a card is easy or as hard as you want it to be. In this hub I will be discussing how I made this unique card for my niece. All the crafting ideas I present here are unique ideas that come to me, and I hope my hub will give you some inspiration for coming up with your own creations.

Step One: Sketch Out The Drawing

I sketched out a picture of a bird. Copyright Sweetiepie.
I sketched out a picture of a bird. Copyright Sweetiepie.

A few weeks ago I had began sketching out a bird on a piece of sketching paper. When I make a card I usually like to use cardstock, but since my niece's birthday was coming up soon I decided to use this drawing I had already started. That is why I will be strengthening the sketching paper with modge podge, which will give the card a lustrous look.

Step Two: Add The First Section Of Color

Add the red color near the throat of the bird. Copyright of Sweetiepie.
Add the red color near the throat of the bird. Copyright of Sweetiepie.

I like to add the colors section by section when I am coloring a picture. So the first section I colored was that of the bird's throat. I used an old picture I took as a reference.

Step Three: Add More Color

Adding the color to the stomach and the head.  Copyright of Sweetiepie.
Adding the color to the stomach and the head. Copyright of Sweetiepie.

In this shot I have added the color to the stomach and the head. Thus you can see how I continue to add the colors section by section.

Step Four: Finish Adding Color To The Bird

Add the finishing touches to the bird.  Copyright Sweetiepie.
Add the finishing touches to the bird. Copyright Sweetiepie.

As I colored the bird I added some texture to give the bird a realistic look, such as feathers and a shiny beak. In this picture I stayed true to my original photograph, but people can change it up if they like. Sometimes I decide to put blue in the place or orange. Remember to experiment and have fun! My art and cards are always different that someone else's and your should reflect your own personality.

Step Five: Add Color To The Branches

Add brown color to the branches.  Copyright Sweetiepie.
Add brown color to the branches. Copyright Sweetiepie.

Shade the branches to create depth and dimension. It is fun to use a shading tool to smooth out parts of the drawing and coloring. I love to sometimes just practice shading on a piece of paper and it is very relaxing! Hypnotic and relaxing in that my mind is not running around with a thousand little thoughts like it usually does throughout the day. When I sketch and draw I am truly focused on the moment and enjoying the moment.

Step Six: Color The Background

I decided to add blue color to the background.  Copyright Sweetiepie.
I decided to add blue color to the background. Copyright Sweetiepie.

I decided to color the background in a diagonal direction, which gives the picture a special texture. I also enjoy coloring the background straight across and perfectly blending everything, but sometimes that can be boring so I like to mix it up. Each of my past and future hubs on card making are intended to show the reader that each drawing and art project is unique and special.

Step Seven: Paint The Modge Podge Across The Card

In this step I used a paint brush to paint the modge podge across the surface of the picture. I had used thinner sketching paper for this project because I had not planned on making it into a card initially. However, modge podge helps to make thinner paper more stable and gives it a glossy sheen once it dries. Watch this instructional video to see how I spread the mode podge across the surface of the card.

Step Eight: Sew The Card Together

Watch the instructional video to see how how I complete the card. I had modge podged both sides of my drawing and allowed it twenty-four hours to dry, which gave this paper the stability of cardstock. However, what I love about the modge podge is that it gave my picture a lustrous shine that I love and a paint like look. This is something special I like to do with my cards, I sew together two pieces of paper to make the final card. This gives it a very homemade feel and sewing can be relaxing and fun. Just make sure to get a big enough needle so it is easy to thread the embroidery floss through and try not to poke your fingers. I do this sometimes and I always warn people to be careful!

Finished Card!

Here is a picture of the finished card.
Here is a picture of the finished card.

Here is a picture of the finished card and I hope it gives you inspiration with making your own cards. Wen you make cards by hand you are giving someone a unique card that will be a hit at any birthday party, and it will make you seem very thoughtful too. No offense, but anyone can buy a card at the store, but how many people will actually put in the effort to make you a card? Of course you are thoughtful to begin with, but giving a handmade card shows thought was put into a person's birthday. I hope my idea will inspire you to create your own birthday cards and to save money on buying cards from the store. Remember a homemade card can be made out of any materials from around you house.

Comments 23 comments

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia

Great instructional directions, this should help anyone making their own cards. Just a suggestion, why not make the card twice the width then fold in half to save having to stitch it together.

Birds are beautiful to put on cards as there are so many to choose from.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for the comments Eileen. I make cards both ways folding them in half and stiching them together. I just like to stitch cards sometimes because it gives it a fun effect, but it is just one of those weird things I like I guess :). However, it is much more practical to fold them in half. My niece liked it once when I stiched a card for her so I did it again. I love birds and they are so much fun to draw. Thanks for all the great comments.


G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 8 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

very nice my dear.  I got a digital camera so maybe now I can show some of my cards too.  Love this sort of things lots.  You are re-inspiring me thanks.G-Ma ;o) Hugs


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for the wonderful comments G-ma and I am looking forward to seeing your cards. I am very excited about it.


Chef Jeff profile image

Chef Jeff 8 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

This is something we do with my students - we create cards for special occasions. Thanks for the colorful and informative step-by-step! I may make it into a powerpoint for my class, if I have your permission to use your excellent hub.


Chef Jeff profile image

Chef Jeff 8 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

This is something we do with my students - we create cards for special occasions. Thanks for the colorful and informative step-by-step! I may make it into a powerpoint for my class, if I have your permission to use your excellent hub.


compu-smart profile image

compu-smart 8 years ago from London UK

Excellent hub and idea AND instructions to create something soo personal and origonal!;)


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Chef Jeff,

The powerpoint idea with your students would be great and I have no problems with that.  Of course you have my permission to use it.  Thanks for stopping by and leaving the great comments :).

Compu-smart,

I also thank you for stopping by and leaving nice comments.  I am really getting into card making because it is cheaper and more fun than buying one at the store.  There are ten thousands different ways of doing it and imagination is the only ingredient needed :).


jacobworld profile image

jacobworld 8 years ago from Ireland

Nicee one I will use it when teaching cheers mate


ahmu profile image

ahmu 8 years ago

hugs

nice card u make for ur niece

well when u make a card for me


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I wanted to make you a card Ahmu, but you told me not to send you any letters. Have you changed your mind :).


HubSub Urban Mom profile image

HubSub Urban Mom 8 years ago from San Francisco Bay Area

Awesome! I like the stitching idea -- very cool, especially in this computerized digitized era. Handmade cards and hand written letters are now coming back as chic since so much thought goes into it. (I remember a time when people were urged to send computerized stuff!) I grew up making cards for my family until I got my very first paycheck in H.S. When I gave them store-bought cards they were disappointed. I remember my dad jokingly saying, "Oh, so we're not that important anymore!" Thx, you have inspired me too!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I agree, homemade cards are special and there are so many ways of making these. I am glad I inspired you to get back into making cards and perhaps you can write hub about one of your cards too. I think it is great if we have hubs on this topic. Thanks for commenting!


Sophie Esperana profile image

Sophie Esperana 8 years ago from Los Angeles

You are really creative! Your niece is one lucky girl. Hey, have you tried other forms of paper-art? I'm into decoupage right now and I think it would make great gifts as well. Excellent hub :)


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks for the nice comments Sophie! I have not tried decoupage since high school, but that is a good idea and I might try that next. Maybe you should write a hub about how to do this. I think it would be useful :).


guidebaba profile image

guidebaba 8 years ago from India

Good dear. This reminds me of my old school-days.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

That is nice to hear Guidebaba!


C.S.Alexis profile image

C.S.Alexis 7 years ago from NW Indiana

Time I took a look at this hub. Great video instruction! Fun ideas too! Nice work SweetiePie.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 7 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I have fun experimenting with different things, and this was a spur of the moment and fun card to make. Thanks for the comment.


Lgali profile image

Lgali 7 years ago

thnaks for sharing this new ideas


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 7 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thank you Lgali!


varonny profile image

varonny 7 years ago from TORONTO

This is a very nice card, no wonder your niece liked it so much. I have noticed kids love crafts and hand made things. Unlike some people, they actually appretiate the hard work and thought put into it.

Oh, btw, what is exactly modge podge. I don't recall ever seeing it here, in Canada. My husband is an artist, it might be of some use for him.

Thank you for this very cute hub!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 7 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

It is a type of glue that gives a luster to crafts, and can even be used to hold puzzles together. You can use a paintbrush to paint it on top of a drawing, and it will make it look a little bit like a painting. I am not sure if anyone else uses it the way I do, but I enjoy it. You might be able to find pod modge at large crafting stores in Canada, or you can find it on the Joanns.com website, or the Michaels.com website.

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