How to recycle your Christmas Cards

How to recycle Christmas Cards

Mummy hates waste. You name it – we recycle it. Last Sunday’s chicken roast? Sandwiches. Then stir-fry. Finally, soup. We have been subjected to the weirdest menus in the name of not wasting leftovers. You know that rule that says you can only cook meat twice before it must be discarded? Well, Mummy doesn’t. We’ve even once been served two-day-old bubble and squeak (with added bacon) sandwiched between a couple of pasta sheets, masquerading as a veggie lasagne. Our house is full of random buttons, screws and blue-tack remnants, and the tiniest snippet of paper has to go into the recycling bin. Thank goodness the question of how to recycle your Christmas cards is far simpler, way purer, and much less likely to necessitate a visit to A&E! Here are 2 examples of what you can do with an old Christmas card:

Thank you cards:

Now it is no secret that Mummy is ‘allergic’ to crafting – she is too much of a control-freak. However, her symptoms are way less serious than those attributable to waste. So, inspired by a post on Mediocre Mum about creating gorgeous cards using old wrapping paper, we decided to attempt simple decoupage with some of our old Christmas cards. First we cut some card to size, using fancy craft scissors (1). My silver pen (thank you Santa) added the required greeting. Next we cut out images from our favourite cards, and used double-sided sticky pads to attach them to the cards (2).

"how to recycle your christmas cards"

You will see that the reason she was able to cope with the crafting chaos was the distraction afforded her by carefully making a list of those family and friends who had graced us with a greeting this festive season (3). Just so she could be certain to return the favour next year. Control freak, see? An hour of creative endeavour for us, a sense of achievement for Mummy, and we had these to show for it:

"Candy canes"

Only problem now is getting round to writing them…

Gift Tags:

Gift tags were always an irritation in our house until we decided to make our own. Stick-on labels with not quite enough stick, rendering parcels completely anonymous under the tree on Christmas morning; teeny tiny tags with just enough space to write the recipient’s name in code – not worth their own exorbitant price tags! Home made gift tags are completely free, much larger, and stay put. Simply cut out your favourite designs from this year’s Christmas cards (making sure they are not printed on the reverse!), stamp out a hole with a hole punch, and attach some ribbon or string, and you’ve got your gift tags for next year!

"Home made gift tags"

Of course, they will need to be placed carefully in the box, with next year’s Christmas card list meticulously written out ready for Christmas 2013… ๐Ÿ˜‰

"Home made gift tags"

You might also like this post on Christmas crafts for older kids.  Or maybe next year you could make your own Christmas cards!

25 thoughts on “How to recycle your Christmas Cards”

  1. Hi,

    I’ve also made mine into gift tags!

    I used to love making them with my Mum when I was little and now I make them with my little ones!

    I hadn’t thought about using them for Thank You cards though! Great idea.



  2. Ooh such lovely Thank You notes! I bet you were very pleased with these!!! And hooray to more crafting. Yay.


  3. Such a good idea, and doesn’t Mummy have lovely writing! I make lists of who bought what for Christmas/birthday etc and by the time I come to do thank you cards I can’t read it.

  4. Hello fellow craft-allergy sufferer! This is genius. I am literally just on my way to fish the Christmas cards out of the wastepaper basket. Happy New Year!

  5. These are absolutely gorgeous and I think M might be at the right age next year to have a go at something a bit more challenging! Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. Thats a brilliant idea. I don’t have the first clue about arts and crafts yet – I have about a year to learn before letting z loose on it all!

  7. I’ve always done the gift tag thing. The trick is, at the beginning of December, to find where you put away last year’s cards. “In a safe place”, of course. I’ve never been organised enough to make the tags a year in advance – and I like doing it in December, to get in the Christmas mood.

    • I have been known to misplace them for an entire year. They turn up eventually, and it’s fascinating to read your card list from two years previously!

  8. We do just the same though I think yours look more professional. Thank you for that reminder that we need to write those cards tomorrow!

  9. Great idea, here is a tip for those of the readers who want to recycle, but are not handy-If your area doesn’t run a recycling pick-up scheme you’ll have to put a little bit more legwork into sticking to your new year’s eco resolution. Hopefully there’s a supermarket or other provider nearby where you can drop off your recyclables.


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