The Write Stuff: DIY Stationery

Reader Contribution by Candis Calvert
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The paper stream runs heavy through most households, with catalogs, magazines, greeting cards and advertisements coming and going regularly. Typically thrown in the trash, these easily reused paper products can be transformed in any number of ways to provide a useful new item for your homestead.

This week we’re taking old seed catalogs, leftover note cards, a little patience and creativity to make personalized collage/silhouette cards. Perfect for revamping any extra cards (think excess Christmas cards, birthday invites, seriously out-of-date stationery) you have laying around, this easy projects allows you to get the creativity flowing and create beautiful new gardening-themed DIY stationery.  

Collage/Silhouette Note Cards


You will need:

Old card-stock note cards (or greeting cards) 

Seed catalogs

Glue or Mod Podge

A paintbrush

Acrylic paint (choose your favorite color)


A silhouette (printed from internet) or a stencil

Painter’s palette (or paper plate)



1. Get started by cutting out pieces from your seed catalogs. Lots of color is preferable!

2. Trim shapes as desired: squares/rectangles for a linear look or circles/wavy bits for a more organic look.

3. Using thin-out glue or Mod Podge and paintbrush, paste you colorful piece to the front of your note card. Cover the entire front of card.

4. Wait to dry completely. (This could take a while; you may as well take a coffee break.)

5. Place cut-out silhouette or stencil on note card. For large designs, a centered placement may be preferred; for smaller, an offset placement looks nice.

6. Use pencil to trace around silhouette or stencil.

7. Using a small brush and acrylic paint, trace around penciled-on design, taking care to keep lines intact. Paint all negative space, so that only your design remains.

8. Let dry (again).

9. Use your fabulous new cards to invite friends to a great fall garden/work/apple-picking party this fall.

This project is perfect not only for adults that have a little time to craft in the slower season, but also for kids needing an indoor project. A perfect way to use this idea: as a family discuss silhouette choices (pick maybe three different ones), pile supplies on table and set kids loose to make this year’s family holiday cards.

Candis Calvert is a (sub)urban homesteader seeking ways to use what she already has to create useful and fun new things. Never content to buy new when old is available; she hopes to wring all the life out of everyday items through creative repurposing.

See more of her adventures at her website, Adventures of Cactus and Fuschia.

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