DIY Tutorial: How to Make Handmade Art Collage Note Cards

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Making your own art collage note cards is easy. It just requires a few paper products, some glue stick, scissors and your imagination. This tutorial will walk you through how to make your own custom collage note cards featuring tiny owls.

What you’ll need:
  • Standard 8.5″ x 11″ cardstock
  • Assorted scrapbook papers
  • Glue Stick
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Paper Cutter
  • Ink Jet or Laser Printer/Copier
  • Pen
  • Markers (optional)
  • 5.5″ x 4.25″ envelopes

Here’s what you do:

1. Start by measuring out your backgrounds for your collage designs. Each sheet of cardstock will serve as the base for two original works of art. You’ll need to measure and cut two rectangles from the background paper of your choice for your first set of two cards. These rectangles will be 4.75″ wide by 3.5″ high. Take your measurements then draw lines to connect the marks. A ruler works best for this. Unfortunately the boy commandeers all of my rulers and all I had left was a measuring tape.
2. Once you have your first rectangle, cut it out and then proceed on to the next.
3. Here are the two backgrounds I cut out. This is how they will look laid out on your cardstock. Remember that half the width of the cardstock is 5.5″. Once you’ve completed your collages, you will glue your backgrounds with the final art horizontally onto the bottom half of the cardstock. Be sure that the backgrounds are a quarter inch from the bottom of the page and that they are center within their own 5.5″ sections on either side of that imaginary divider line.
4. Cut out your shapes for your owls and any other imagery you’d like to use in your artwork. Use different colored or patterned papers to represent shapes. If you don’t have a paper in a color you need, simply flip it over to the white side and color it with marker before cutting out your shape. The basic shapes for the owl are pictured above. A circle for the body, smaller circles with dots colored on for the eyes, a triangle for the beak, and circles halved and shortened for the wings.
5. Once you have all of the shapes you need for your design, piece them together and arrange them to suit your taste. Once satisfied with your arrangement, glue the elements to the background.

6. You would then glue your collages to a piece of cardstock as instructed earlier. Remember, based on the measurements of your background, place the images a quarter inch up from the bottom. You can draw a light line down the center of the cardstock at 5.5″ to center your artwork onto either side so they are center with the edge of the cardstock and the center of the cardstock. Be sure to erase the line completely afterwards.
Here are some more images of note card designs I created:

 7. Once you’ve created your template for your note cards, all there is left to do is print off your cards! Simply place your card design on your copier and print out as many copies as you like onto cardstock. Then, using a paper cutter, cut each page down the middle so you are left with two single cards. Then fold the cards in half with the image side out. Pair each card with a standard invitation envelope measuring 5.5″ x 4/25″. These are available at any arts and crafts store. If you’re looking to make large quantities to sell, I recommend purchasing envelopes in bulk from Clear Bags. Clear Bags also sells Flap Seal Crystal Clear Bags for protecting your cards from dirt and grime especially if they’ll be on store shelves. They also allow you to bundle cards into sets.
To see more card designs I’ve created using this simple collage technique, check out my blog post “Before there was soap. Handmade cards and other paper crafts.
Do you still use paper stationery and note cards? If so, where is your favorite place to shop for paper cards?

Before there was soap. Handmade cards and other paper crafts.

I may receive compensation from links on this site. See my disclosure policy.

Around the time I started selling soap on etsy during beta in 2005 I was also selling handmade note cards. They were my first big “sell” before I finally switched over to selling only bath and body products. At that time I had a huge paper fetish and was always on the look out for interesting scrapbooking papers. It was also around the time I first discovered ACEO’s. So my first note cards were of designs I created from collages using various papers. My owls series was my favorite.
Everyday Birds Note Cards
These are my Everyday Bird Note Cards. I sold these in packs of four with one of each design. These actually came after my Seasonal Bird Note Card Set which you can still see on etsy from a sold transaction in 2008. The owl with the blue snowflake and mittens was always my favorite.
Valentine Note Card Set
My final collection in the owl series note cards was for Valentine’s Day and featured two different cards of owls in love. One card featured an owl delivering a love letter while the other was of two owls kissing in front of a giant heart on a branch. All of my card sets came in sets of four with envelopes and sold for $6 each. I also sold a Siberian Husky note card set in the same style.
Tree Art Collage Print
In addition to note cards I also created and sold art prints. My most popular was the one featured above titled “Tree Art Collage.” I also sold another similar art work called “Autumn Dreams.”
The closet I ever got back around to making prints after the collages was with a few ACEO’s in 2008 that I made from marker but never sold.
Husband ACEO
This ACEO was a portrait of my now ex-husband. I actually described this one as “An original art card created from pencil and ink. Check out the husband in his happy blue eyeglasses. Everyone hates him because he has curls to die for.” And then I also drew one I called “Shiny Red Boots.”
My favorite love however is photography. Unfortunately, because I loathe product photography so much – mostly because I suck at it – my photo skills have fallen by the way side and I’ve lost interest in artistically photographing interesting subject matter. My favorite photograph in recent years, though, has to be the following.
Orchid
I took this photograph of an orchid one afternoon downtown on my local farmer’s market – the Roanoke City Market – on an unusually warm day in February. The soft sky background which is almost turquoise in color is actually the backdrop of the awnings we had to protect ourselves from the sun and weather while selling. I love how the orchid looks so strong and yet so delicate at the same time. This shot was taken with a Digital Canon Rebel XT and was not altered in any way.
Recently I purchased some chalk pastels and did a few sketches with those, but other than that I haven’t done anything artistic lately other than to play with soap and spend time writing for my blog. You can see my pastel chalk drawings of a hamster and Cockatiel here and drawings of the now defunct Roanoke band Earndheart, a fox, and a barn owl here.  I’m really hoping to have the chance to play around with my new watercolors before the year is out.
What about you? Do you have any artistic endeavors? And if so, what’s your favorite medium?