Author: Canadian Living

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When family and friends have taken the time to pick out pretty Christmas cards, write in their news and send them along, many of us just can't part with these paper memories. Whether you're the sentimental type or simply a sensible recycler, you'll like our imaginative ways to create something new with your precious old cards. Easy enough for the whole family, these fun projects will let you enjoy all your cards every Christmas.

Recycled Christmas-Card Crafts:
Tree
Ornament
Basket

GENERAL NOTE: Enlarge patterns photostatically to make grid of 2.5 cm (1-in) squares, then cut out and label each.

(PDF format, requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader)

 

TREE

General note: Enlarge patterns photostatically to make grid of 2.5 cm (1-in) squares; then cut out and label each.
(PDF format, requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader).

Finished tree is 46 cm (18-1/8 in) tall.

You need:
&#8226 80 to 100 used Christmas-card fronts
&#8226 Piece of stiff gold paper, 30 x 15 cm (11-7/8 x 6 in), for star (optional)
&#8226 .80 m of gold wire-edged ribbon, 22 mm wide (optional)
&#8226 2-in square of hardwood, 1-1/2 in high, for base
&#8226 33 cm (13-in) dowel, 1/4 in in diameter
&#8226 Drill and 1/4-in bit
&#8226 White craft glue
&#8226 1/4-in hole punch and small stapler
&#8226 Scissors or X-acto knife and cutting mat

To make:
1. Drill 1/4-in hole straight down through centre of base. Glue 1 end of dowel into hole.

2. From card fronts, trace and cut 5 different sizes of branches, in listed quantities, using pattern pieces. At dot on each branch, punch 1/4-in hole for dowel.

3. On work surface, lay each branch right side down, then bring bottom-edge corners in toward centre, overlapping as shown in diagram (do not fold or crease); staple only overlapped corners together, forming conical point.

4. Working up from base to dowel tip and using largest to smallest branches, slip branches, right side up, over dowel so points form a spiral up and around it. Dowel tip should extend above branches approx 2 cm (3/4 in).

5. From paper (or card front), cut 2 stars. With wrong sides together and edges even, glue stars together and around dowel tip where shown by broken lines. Let dry. If desired, tie ribbon into bow around dowel below star.

ORNAMENT

General note: Enlarge patterns photostatically to make grid of 2.5 cm (1-in) squares; then cut out and label each.
(PDF format, requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader).

You need:
&#8226 2 to 4 used Christmas-card fronts
&#8226 1 stiff used Christmas-card back
&#8226 Frozen-juice lid (from 355 mL/12-1/2 fl oz size container)
&#8226 White craft glue
&#8226 Transparent tape (optional)
&#8226 Pencil, compass and ruler
&#8226 Scissors or X-acto knife and cutting mat
&#8226 Approx 25.5 cm (10 in) of thin gold cord, for hanging loop
&#8226 Clothespins and metallic gold marker (both optional)

To make:
1. With pencil, trace ornament folding guide onto card back; cut out. If desired, reinforce edges with tape.

2. Lay lid on 1 card front, then, with pencil, trace it (if desired, centre on a motif to "frame" it and choose same motifs – Santas, for example – for single ornament) and cut out. Trace and cut a total of 4 circles in same manner.

3. Centre guide on front of each circle; using compass point and ruler, carefully score circle along guide edges, ending up with scored triangle surrounded by 3 curved flaps.

4. With motifs oriented in same direction and right sides out, arrange 3 triangles into pyramid shape so top points meet at centre. Apply glue onto adjacent flaps; with curved edges even, press together. Before glue dries: Fold cord in half to form hanging loop, tuck ends into centre and glue. With curved edges even, glue remaining triangle onto base. If desired, clamp each join with clothespin until dry. If desired, tie overhand knot at bottom of loop, then, with marker, outline all curved edges.

BASKET

General note: Enlarge patterns photostatically to make grid of 2.5 cm (1-in) squares; then cut out and label each.
(PDF format, requires free Adobe Acrobat Reader).

Finished basket is 8 cm (3-1/8 in) high and 20 cm (7-7/8 in) diameter at rim.

You need:
&#8226 14 used Christmas-card fronts
&#8226 2 stiff used Christmas-card backs
&#8226 White craft glue
&#8226 Scissors or X-acto knife and cutting mat
&#8226 Clothespins (optional)
&#8226 1/8-in hole punch, transparent tape and pencil
&#8226 Tapestry needle and crochet yarn (we used metallized 4-ply polyester)

To make:
1. Using pencil, trace basket side and base patterns onto card backs; cut out. If desired, reinforce edges with tape.

2. Lay base pattern on card front; with pencil, trace it, then cut out. Trace and cut a total of 2 bases in same manner.

3. Lay side pattern on card front; with pencil, trace it, then cut out. Trace and cut a total of 12 sides in same manner.

4. With small dabs, glue 2 bases together so right sides are out and edges are even. Divide sides into pairs and in same manner, glue each pair together to make a total of 6 sides.

5. Approx 3 to 6 mm (1/8 to 1/4 in) from edge of base and each side, punch holes at approx 6 mm intervals. Thread needle with approx 76 cm (30-in) length of yarn; loop through hole at 1 corner of base and knot. Through holes, blanket-stitch around entire edge; knot yarn.

6. Beginning and ending at 1 corner of bottom edge, blanket-stitch entire edge of each side in same manner.

7. Thread needle again, loop through hole at 1 corner of base and knot. Picking up stitch from 1 edge, then the other, lace bottom edges of sides, one at a time, to base. Lace up each side join in same manner to make basket. Weave yarn ends into lacing; trim.

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