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Handmade Christmas Card Ideas

Updated on August 23, 2014

Ideas for Handmade Christmas Cards

I like to make some Christmas cards each year, but I must confess that half of the problem is coming up with new ideas. So I am in the process of collecting handmade Christmas card ideas to display on this page. You'll find ideas ranging from paper tole to collage to stamping to pop up cards and many other different ideas for this December.

Sometimes you need to make many cards to give to a long list of family and friends. In this case, you may want a style which is easy and quick to make. Other times you may just want to make one or two really special "pieces of art". You'll find some different suggestions here to give you lots of creative ideas.

Photo credit: GonnaFly

It's time to start thinking about your Christmas cards for 2013. I hope these ideas help to get the creative juices flowing!

paper tole christmas card ideas
paper tole christmas card ideas

Paper Tole / Decoupage Ideas

This type of paper tole or decoupage is done by taking identical pictures, cutting them out, and layering them up with sticky foam pads. Some of the elements of the picture will have more layers giving a 3 dimensional effect. My first attempts at this were done with some lovely, good quality wrapping paper. So if you can find a wrapping paper you particularly like, you could use that. You could use rubber stamps to make your identical pictures or even print out your own pictures at home using your computer and printer.

How to Make a Decoupage Greeting Card
Illustrated step by step instructions showing how to make a 3D decoupage greeting card. Decoupage greeting (or paper tole) cards are cards which have layere...

Religious Paper Tole Kits

Click the pictures to see more info or to buy the printable decoupage papers

The following paper tole cards are made from printable kits, where only the elements you need will be printed - you don't have to cut off any of the picture. The advantage of these kits is they can be printed out as many times as you need them. You can make dozens of cards from the one kit if you wish.

nativity cracker

nativity with wise men

cute nativity with shepherds

cute nativity

nativity with animals

silent night

nativity corner

nativity in an arch

nativity shutter

over the edge nativity scene

polar bear fun

mouse with Christmas pudding

animated Santa with fireplace

penguin tree

baa humbug – funny sheep

3 contemporary Chrissy trees

animated snow pixies

vintage stagecoach

Die-Cut Decoupage Papers

Alternatively, you can buy papers especially for decoupage. Some even come pre-cut which makes it even easier - not having to cut out lots of fiddly bits. This is a great idea if you have many to make.

Collage / Scrapbooking Designs

Click on each thumbnail to see a bigger picture

The collage technique allows you to combine different media into your design. You may want to use different colored and textured papers, string, ribbons, buttons, fabric, wrapping paper, stickers, recycled materials (such as book pages or old greeting cards) or any other material to add that pizzazz and sparkle to your card.Feast your eyes on some of the creative collage cards created by others...
















Idea Using Recycled Materials

Have you ever tried iris folding?

Iris folding is where you cut a hole in the front of the card and then stick strips of paper behind this hole to form an iris pattern.

Christmas Iris Folding PatternsA wonderful collection of Christmas iris folding patterns for you to try this Christmas - stars, stockings, trees, snowman, and more.

Pop-up Christmas Card Ideas

Give the recipients a fun surprise when they open their card and find picture pop out at them.

vintage churches

bells and candles

frosty snowman

snowy church

Even more pop-up Christmas cards

Christmas Pop Up CardsCheck out all these printable pop-up Christmas cards - including nativity scene, snowflakes, snowmen, Christmas trees, and more.

Shaker Christmas Cards Kits

You've no doubt heard of snowglobes which you can shake up and set the snow flakes floating around. Well here's some shaker cards which have a window made from clear acetate. You will need to attach this window to the base (after resting your "snow" in the middle of your base) using double-sided foam around the edges, making sure you leave no gaps. For your "snow" you could use salt, flour, glitter, beads, or sequins.

Click the pictures to see more info or to buy the printable designs

nativity scene

shepherd with sheep

three wise men

snowy scene

let it snow

polar bear with gifts


snowy scene

mouse in a gift

smiling snowman

Printable Interactive CardsPop-up cards and shaker cards are types of interactive cards where parts of the card move, slide, spin, or flip. On this page you'll find even more of these ingenious cards including special sections of Christmas cards for the different types of interactive cards.

Stamping Designs

Click on each thumbnail to see a bigger picture of these stamped cards

Stamping can be as easy as just using ink to stamp the pictures. You could also give extra sparkle and depth by embossing the pictures with special embossing powder. An even more time consuming option is to then hand color the picture. You could also combine techniques and use the stamped pictures to build up three dimensional decoupage pictures or stamp on different papers and then make a collage from these pictures.











Here are some of the delightful Festive stamps available from Amazon

(Also check out the new release stamps.)

Happy Birthday Jesus Cling Stamps

Winter Wonderland Clear Stamps

3-1/4"-Christmas Ornaments 8pc

Mimi's Christmas Clear Stamp Set

Manger Scene Wood Handle Stamp

Inkadinkado Snowman Wood Stamp

Holly Framed Merry Christmas Wood Stamp

Mindscape Merry Christmas Wood Stamp

One year I cheated and did "stamping" using my computer and printer (which printed using a slow drying ink). After I had printed each card, I quickly covered it with the embossing powder before the ink dried. This method will only work if you choose a picture with white and one other color - unless you are using a clear embossing powder. Coloring pages would make ideal pictures for these cards. Here are some to choose from:

Jesus' Birth - Christmas Coloring Pages On this page full of coloring pages from the Bible, you will find a great selection of Jesus' birth including the shepherds and the wise men.

3D Embellishment Kits

Click the pictures to see more info or to buy the printable designs

Some of these cards are cards and gifts in one. When it's time to take down the Christmas cards, the 3D embellishment can be removed and used next year as a tree decoration.

green bauble

snowflake dangler

blue star

red and white bell

snowy penguin

nativity scene

green and white Christmas tree

Have you ever tried making printable Holiday ornaments?

Printable Christmas OrnamentsIt's so much fun to create your own Christmas decorations. And these printable Christmas ornaments will make the perfect gift for a friend or family member or just for your own tree.

holly and ivy

warm winter wishes

shimmering snowflake

rose wreath parchment card

praying angel

decorated tree

pretty baubles

swirly tree

Photo Cards

Click on each thumbnail to see a bigger picture

Using a family photo (or photo of the kids) as part of your Christmas card is a great idea, especially for cards given to family and close friends. People on your list who you don't see regularly will also be kept up to date with how your family is growing (up).











Printable Photo Cards - some free and some to buy

Christmas Photo Frame CardsThe section of this article is all about printable photo cards - either add your own photo before printing, or create a decorative frame card and slip the photo in behind.

Stitched Card Ideas

Click on each thumbnail to see a bigger picture

Some of these pictures are like the string art that can be done with nails in a board where you create straight lines with your thread but together they give the appearance of a curve. Normally you would prick the holes into your card following the pricking pattern before you take up your thread. Then you use embroidery thread to stitch the design. Alternatively some of these designs would look really effective by simply pricking holes in your card and skipping the thread entirely.






stitched star

stitched snowflakes

trees and decorations

stitched swirly tree

stitched pine tree

stitched snowmen

stitched snowflake

Paper Weaving Designs

Click these pictures to see more info or to buy the printable patterns

This is a lovely idea for when you are running short on time or have many greeting cards to make - nice easy straight cuts and some simple paper weaving to make an effective card.




Bookmark and Christmas Card in One Ideas

Why not give a gift and Christmas card in one? These cards, available to purchase from craftsUprint, each have a pocket which holds a coordinating bookmark.







Christmas Tent Cards

A tent card folds flat for easy posting, but can be opened to stand by itself as a little tent. It often has an aperture (or window) in the front to dangle an item in, or see through to the inside of the card. Here are some instructions for making a tent card.

Here are some printable tent card kits to purchase:




Do you make your own Christmas cards?

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    • Joy Neasley profile image

      Joy Neasley 

      5 years ago from Nashville, TN

      Thank you for a great lens.

    • Canvas-Art-Shop profile image


      6 years ago

      Everyone loves a handmade Christmas card, thank you for the lens!

    • Grasmere Sue profile image

      Sue Dixon 

      6 years ago from Grasmere, Cumbria, UK

      Revisiting your lovely lens to say I'm adding it to my "Homemade Christmas Tips" Thank you.

    • Linda BookLady profile image

      Linda Jo Martin 

      6 years ago from Post Falls, Idaho, USA

      Beautiful Christmas card ideas! I placed a link to this lens on my "Christmas on a Tight Budget" lens. Being without money isn't the same as being without creativity. The many amazing cards you featured here are a great inspiration. Thanks!

    • Grasmere Sue profile image

      Sue Dixon 

      6 years ago from Grasmere, Cumbria, UK

      So many great ideas! I've added it to my "Best Christmas Stockings" lens- hope that's OK!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I "liked" your lens. Great ideas and I think that it would be fun to make my own Christmas cards.

    • latiptop profile image


      6 years ago

      I love homemade Christmas cards! Hope you don't mind me sharing this on my Christ-centered Christmas lens.:)

    • CraftsIdeas profile image


      6 years ago

      Wonderful ideas!! Thank you very much!!

    • VSP profile image


      6 years ago

      Very cute cards!! Hope I remember this page next Christmas!

    • yayas profile image


      6 years ago

      I have so many great Christmas card ideas. My biggest challenge is actually getting around to making the cards and putting them in the mail. Your video was great. Thanks for such a cute idea.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Great lens - I also love making my own handmade Christmas cards with the Vintage Christmas clip art pack that I also sell. There is nothing like the delight you get from vintage images!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      These are really good ideas. I just got some yesterday from a Christmas bazaar.

    • psiloveyou1 profile image


      7 years ago

      Spectacular lens with tons of ideas. I will be back to visit again :)

    • angielichtenstein profile image


      7 years ago

      Great ideas. Nice lens.

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image


      7 years ago

      nice lens

    • paperfacets profile image

      Sherry Venegas 

      7 years ago from La Verne, CA

      Thank you for showing my Christmas card ideas. Great resource here.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Nice lens, thumb up !

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 

      7 years ago from UK

      I think a handmade Christmas card means more, but I'm like you in that I don't always know where to start. Loads of inspiration here -- thanks!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      There are some really cute cards here.

      I would like to make my own, but I never actually do it.

      Thanks for sharing,

      Robin :)

    • WildFacesGallery profile image


      8 years ago from Iowa

      I do indeed make my own Christmas cards every year. I'm lensrolling this lens to mine on the same subject. :) Also adding it as a featured lens on my Handmade Christmas Lensography lens.


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