8 Uses For Old Christmas Cards

The holiday greeting cards sent for Christmas each year often find their way into either a box until the next year, or into the garbage until they biodegrade. Why not try creative ways to display Christmas cards? Why not turn them into gifts when you are finished with displaying them (or before)? Why not, indeed! Here are 8 suggestions:

Suggestions for displaying Christmas Cards

Christmas Tree Wire Frame: Make a wire frame tree out of thick floral wire or an old wire clothes hanger. Using binder clips, large paperclips, or clothespins, attach the cards to the wire tree. Cardboard Chimney: Cut a tall wide rectangle and a short, long rectangle out of cardboard or felt and paint it to resemble a chimney. Attach Christmas cards all over your “chimney” with double-sided tape (for cardboard) or the rough half of an adhesive Velcro strip (for felt).Front Door Collage: Although the idea of displaying Christmas cards on a front door or in a foyer is not all that original, literally covering those areas with holiday greeting cards is. Save your Christmas cards for several years to fill these areas with so many cards, or at least front panels of cards, that it resembles amazing holiday wallpaper. Card Clothesline: Hang Christmas greetings on a card “clothesline.” Drape ribbon, twine, cord, or even actual white clothesline across doorways or from one corner of your ceiling to the other. Attach Christmas cards, darkroom-style, to the line with clothespins, florists’ wire coiled into spirals on both ends, or paperclips. Novelty paperclips in gold star or red heart designs can enhance the holiday theme.

Suggestions for reusing Christmas Cards

Card Curtain: Construct a doorway “curtain” of Christmas cards. It will up your cool factor and impress the tweens, teens, or twenty-somethings in your clan. (It is not so useful in homes with small children or curious pets.)

Start with a 1 inch strip of wood cut to fit across the inside of your door frame. Use a staple gun to connect ribbons of several different lengths (You can even make them gradually shorter toward the middle of the doorway.). Using a single-hole punch, make a hole in the middle of the top and the middle of the bottom of each Christmas card.

This craft works best if only the fronts of Christmas cards are used. Tie or knot in the ribbons before and after each card to space them out, or don’t and all of the cards will be touching. Tie off the bottom of each length of ribbon to keep the last card from slipping off. Nail or screw the board into the doorway frame. Remove it for storage and reinstall it the next year.

Christmas Memory Game: Create a memory game for time spent with the younger set. Cut off the fronts of Christmas cards that have no writing on the side that is the back of the picture. Employ a paper cutter, box knife, or scissors to remove the front of each card. Depending on how many memory match cards are needed, you might use one card for each letter or word, or you might need to cut cards into halves or quarters. This is a fun way to teach children their uppercase and lowercase letters and simple words.

Bookmarks: Use entire Christmas cards as bookmarks, or cut strips out of the front panel of cards to make bookmarks. Leave some anonymously at your local library or literacy center. Secretly tuck them into books at the library or bookstore. Preferably, hide them in books in which the readers would be totally not expecting a dose of Christmas cheer.

Altered Arts: Cut off the fronts of Christmas cards and use them as covers for small handmade journals and holiday-themed notepads. Punch holes in them and tie them or lace them to paper cut to a size slightly smaller than the cards used for the front and back of the journals or notepads, and punch holes in the paper as well. These make adorable stocking stuffers.

There are over two billion Christmas cards purchased every year. Armed with these ideas and your own imagination, you can invent many ways to make the fun of your favorite holiday greetings continue for years to come.