cardmaking, Inspiration to get more done, scrapbooking, Use What You Have

Inspiration to Get More Done – Easy Cards Using Paper Scraps

Don’t be intimidated by those “fancy” cards you see online or in magazines. You can get the same look, too, just by using your scraps. Making new art with my leftover scraps is my favorite way to craft! Here’s how I turn my scraps into creations!
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A lot of my papercrafting happens in the organization phase. I have a small metal container for my “extras”. These aren’t necessarily “scraps”. These are more like extra cut-aparts, stamped and colored images or sentiments, or punches… all little things that don’t have a home elsewhere. I don’t let my metal box get too full, and if it does, I make a bunch of projects until it gets under control.
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I also keep paper and cardstock scraps contained into workable sizes. Remember, I am talking about SCRAPS, not full sheets. Once I cut into it, I crop the leftover into as many sizes as I can:

  • 8-1/2″ x 11″
  • 8″ x 8″
  • 6″ x 6″
  • 4″ x 5-1/4″ (A2 card panel)
  • 3-1/2″ x 4-3/4″ (mini card panel)

Those are the only sizes I keep other than a full size. If it is smaller than a “mini”, I trash it.
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Then, I search for color palettes on Pinterest and create little kits for myself using ONLY the colors I find in my favorite palettes. To learn more about this, check out one of my earlier blog posts HERE: How You Are NOT Using Pinterest for Cardmaking (but you SHOULD be!)


Finally, when I sit down to make cards or scrapbook layouts, it is as EASY as pie! All the initial creative thought about color and size has been done already! NOW, my creative focus can be on how to USE these pieces. This is much more manageable for my brain!
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Here are some close-ups of these “scrap cards” (this post contains affiliate links):

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I made a shaker card using some clear deli-container plastic and the Label Rectangle Stitched Die from Creek Bank Creations. The shaker hearts were from forever ago in my stash, and the cute birds come from Ranger Ink – Dylusions Stamps – Unmounted Rubber Stamps – Cat Among the Pigeons.

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For this card, I used the Outline Letters Alphabet Die Set from Creek Bank Creations. I LOVE this alphabet die set because you can use the outline AND the solid inside of the letter as well! The Gift Card Pop Up die and Poppin’ Up Sentiments stamp set are also from Creek Bank Creations, as well. The cup accent actually was from a Letter Board Icon Pack – Coffee/Wine! I snipped off the little plastic tab on the back of the icon and used Prima – Finnabair – Art Basics – 3D Matte Gel – 8 Ounces to adhere it to the card.

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Here’s how I used the outline portion of the same Outline Letters Alphabet Die Set from Creek Bank Creations. AND I used another icon from the same Letter Board Icon Pack – Coffee/Wine. Those two cards practically took no time at all! And I love the clean look!

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While I had the Gift Card Pop-Up Die out and ready, I made another card, too. I’m not sure where these Valentine cut-aparts came from, but they have been in my stash a LONG time! Basically, I just adhered some cardstock together, added some washi tape in the middle and then cut a panel using the Label Rectangle Stitched die. I just continued to layer the scraps… truly any-which-way. I did use the Stampin’ Up! Tag stamp set and tag punch for the little tiny tag on top.

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I used the same technique on my next card, adhering two pieces of cardstock together, adding washi in the middle and then die cutting a large panel. I think this look looks so good, and it is SOOOO simple to do! I used another plastic icon from the Letter Board Icon Pack – Coffee/Wine pack, and more cut aparts from my scrap stash. And here’s a tip: if your card looks “unfinished” or looks like it “needs something”, try one of two things: dimensional foam tape/squares AND/OR liquid accent drops (like Nuvo Jewel Drops or Nuvo Crystal Drops).

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This card was sort of a “mess-up”, but I LOVED how it turned out! Originally I wanted to adhere my large heart accent inside a “pocket”. Then, I spilled white acrylic paint, glued something before I was ready, and I almost just gave up on this card. But then, I decided to leave the heart accent “loose” and instead, adhere another little cut-apart behind it (for a surprise).

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I had a second heart accent in my scrap pile, and since I had already spilled my white acrylic paint, I thought, “Okay… I’ll go with that.” So, for this card, I used a heart embossing folder from my stash and highlighted the texture with a little paint. The rest was nothing more than layering cardstock with cut-aparts and a bow. If it didn’t look “right”, I used a little foam adhesive. For a finishing touch, I added some Ranger Ink – Liquid Pearls – Dimensional Paint – White Opal.

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So, since I had my heart embossing folder and the white acrylic paint, (you guessed it…) I made another card. I just had to. I was on such a roll by this time! And I continued to use the small pile of cut-aparts in front of me. Every once in a while, I reached for an eyelet or a heart punch, but basically I just layered my scraps.

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I love this wine card. So nice. And yes, I was still using the same pile of scraps and the same Letter Board Icon Pack – Coffee/Wine. I also like that it’s not particularly masculine OR feminine. AND, I like that it’s not necessarily a “Valentine’s Day” card, either. I did find a red paper doily that I lightly sanded and then cut in half, but otherwise everything else was from the same supply pile I had been using all along.

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I looked at what I had left, and decided to shift gears a little and make a scrapbook layout. So, I pulled a piece of 12″ x 12″ scrapbook paper. From my homemade scrap pack that I started with, I had 3 pieces of 6″ x 6″ cardstock left plus a few random pieces from when I die cut the L-O-V-E letters (those pieces also had Super Tacky Tape still on the back). So, I just decided to make a nice background for a layout, and then I could add pictures later. In fact, I knew the exact pictures (still in my phone, of course) that would go perfectly on this layout.
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I placed the 3 squares on my white 12″ x 12″ paper, leaving one white area exposed. Then, I added the other half of the heart doily from the previous card.
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Since the Super Tacky Tape can be hand-torn, I decided to tear around the edges of my leftover negative space and make a “worn” look”. I also added some text stamping to the pieces with Tim Holtz Distress Oxide Ink Pad – Seedless Preserves. I continued to layer the cut-aparts in the same way as I did on the cards. The photos I have in mind will be placed right in the center of the page, although I may also layer a few smaller photos as well (to continue the flow I started with layering the scraps). Of course, I wouldn’t feel complete without a bit of white matte acrylic paint. I also added some Ranger Ink – Dina Wakley Media – Heavy Body Acrylic Paint – Eggplant.
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There is nothing to it. Don’t be intimidated by those fancy projects you see online or in magazines. You can do it, too. Start by narrowing down your supply into workable amounts, and keep control of your scraps. And don’t forget to HAVE FUN!
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