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Reuse Old Christmas Cards in 50 Clever Ways

When the holiday season is over and Christmas has come and gone, unless you are the sentimental type who keeps reuse christmas cardseach and every card you receive, chances are you will have accumulated a lovely ‘large’ pile of cards.

Should these cards simply be destined to go in the trash or recycling bin or are there ways to reuse them, recycle them and give them new life?

Don’t be limited just to cards with Santa or Reindeer on them, these ideas can be extended to any greeting cards, birthday cards or other holiday celebration cards that you may acquire throughout the year.

Whether you realise it yet or not there are so many ways to reuse old cards, in fact here are 50 ways to get you started.
  1. Blank Drawing Paper - Remove the images and allow children to use the blank part of the card as drawing paper.
  2. Bookmark - Make a bookmark by cutting the card into strips and you can punch a hole near one end and add a tassel. You can even give these away as gifts.
  3. Books - Cut out images that relate to each of the letters of the alphabet and make a book.  For example, A is for Apple, B is for Broom, C is for Car, S is for Santa, T is for Tree.  They can be of a particular theme, such as Christmas, or just a random selection of images and words.
  4. Boxes – Cutting the cards up you can make little gift boxes out of them.
  5. Bunting - Cut cards up into triangles and attach to a long piece of rope or string and make a bunting. It can be used to decorate the home as a christmas decoration.
  6. Christmas Dinner Menus
 – Using one card per person, you can keep the card intact and paste a piece of red or green paper just inside covering the words.  On that paper then you can set out the menu for the day.   Place each card in front of each person’s table setting.
  7. Christmas Tree Ornaments - The images from Christmas cards can be used to make tree ornaments. Cut out similar-sized pictures, punch a hole in the top, thread with a ribbon and hand from the tree.
  8. Cleaning - The corners of cards are just perfect for getting into the tiny crevices of keyboards and hard to reach areas – even in your car.
  9. Coasters - Cut cards into square shapes and laminate them and they can be used as coasters for Christmas or your next event.
  10. Confetti – Cut into small squares to use as confetti for a party or New Years Eve celebration.
  11. Craft - Children can use old cards in their arts and crafts activities.
  12. Decopage - Decorate gift boxes, wrapping paper or anything that needs a little pizzazz.
  13. Dolls House – Perfect small sizes for decoration or furniture for dolls houses.  Could be used as small pictures.
  14. Embellishments – Cut out as many little features from the cards and use them as embellishments on your journal or on a new card or letter.
  15. Flash Cards –  Words, images, themes or colors – Punch a hole in each ‘mini-flash card’ and join with a piece of string and you have a wonderful learning activity.
  16. Frame them - Select lovely cards and frame them for gifts or your own decorations.
  17. Gift Tags - Create gift tags from greeting cards. A hole punch and piece of ribbon is all you need to create a new label.
  18. Inspiration – The images, scenery, words or themes can be perfect inspiration for your writing, painting, stories or art.
  19.  Marker –  Mark screw-hole locations by using the cards to measure the required spacing.
  20. Matching Game – Select cards with a central figure or theme and cut them in half horizontally to make a memory game for children.  Arrange the halves face down and play a game where the two halves are must be reunited to match.
  21. Matting – Use the blank sides for matting art or photographs prior to framing them.
  22. Mixer/applicator – Don’t use a kitchen utensil to mix paint, glue or putty, use a card.
  23. Napkin Rings -  Simply cut strips of card, roll into a circle and attach with tape or a dab of glue and they are perfect for jazzing up your napkins.
  24. New Cards - The front of each card can be cut off and attached onto a blank card to make a brand new card.
  25. Organization: Cards are the perfect ‘weight’ to label boxes and folders
  26. Origami – Some cards are soft enough to be able to fold into origami. Let your imagination run wild.
  27. Pad of Paper - Turn a stack of cards into a tear off-style pad.  Cut your cards into the same size,  apply some glue to one end and glue them together.  Use a paper weight to hold them firm and overnight they should adhere together.
  28. Painting – Use them for edging when painting a door or window trim.
  29. Paper Chains - Cut into strips and attach interlocking as a paper chain.  Fun activity for the kids.
  30. Placemat - Cut the cards into interesting shapes, and make a collage pasting your selection onto a piece of harder card or paper.  Laminate them and they are ready for your next function.
  31. Place cards - Use a card for each guest.  Write their name on it and decorate it with pinking shears .  Using a colorful pen and write each of your guests’ names on a card and place on the table in front of their setting.
  32. Pocket or Pouch - Reuse old cards to make a gift pouch for small gifts like jewelry, CDs, perfume, etc.
  33. Postcards –  Simply use the image side of the card, write on the back and post it like a postcard.
  34. Puppets – Get creative and make finger puppets.
  35. Recipe Cards
 - Use the image side of the card, write on the back and use it as an index or recipe card. Cut all cards to the same size.
  36. Refrigerator magnets- Cut out any of your favorite images, paste them onto a round of card and attach a magnet to the back. Simple.
  37. Replace - Use old cards to replace any missing cards from a board games.  They may look a little silly but it means the game can go on.
  38. Scrapbooking - Cut out the inscription in each card and put them into scrapbooks.
  39. Scooper - Fold the card into a V-Shape and use it as a scooper for craft work when using glue.
  40. Scraper –  The edges of cards are just strong enough to use as a scraper to remove little hard to get off things like paint drips – no more need to use your fingernail.
  41. Sewing Cards  -  Cut the front of the card off then punch holes around the edge. Add  some lengths of ribbon and a plastic needle. Children can ‘sew’ through the holes for a fun activity.
  42. Shoelace Training Card - Select a card with a main character or feature and then punch holes around it or in a random manner.  Package with some shoelaces and it becomes a great activity kit.
  43. Shopping Lists - Cut off the back of your cards and place all of the plank pieces in a stack. Use them for scribble notes, shopping lists or reminders.
  44. Shred – Shred all of the cards you no longer need and use it as filler in hamper baskets, or padding in packages.
  45. Smoother – Get rid of air bubbles – When laminating things, use the edge of a card to smoothen out any bubbles.
  46. Stabilize furniture -  Fold cards into the shape and size needed and place under the leg of a chair or table.
  47. Stencils – Make them into stencils to use for craft painting or designing.
  48. Stiffeners – If you are posting something that you do not want to bend, use a card as a stiffener to help keep an envelope from bending.
  49. Templates
 – Cut shapes from cards to use as a template as needed.
  50. Wall Decorations – Use and or all of your most favorite cards and decorate your walls in the most unique way.

I’d love to hear more of your ideas.  Do you reuse your old cards in ways other than the above-mentioned list?

 

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