Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Using Old Christmas Cards In Mixed Media Art Projects

What To Do With Old Christmas Cards: Make Art 

Vintage Christmas Card Pop-Up Santa's Sleigh Reindeer MoonAs a mixed media artist I am always tearing up old papers and re constructing pictures with these paper elements. I am also a saver and have been for as long as I can remember, saving "stuff" that I might need someday in a craft project. Right now I am using glue sticks with orange caps. I have accumulated quite a collection of  discarded "tops" which are sitting in a bowl. Someday, I might need to boost up something and the "tops" might just be the little boosters I am looking for.

Creative People Are Crafty Hoarders 

Santa Claus - Christmas ART BLOCK - Original Mixed Media Collage
 Santa Claus Christmas Art Block 
Creative people are crafty hoarders. We see the possibility in objects that other don't see. Artists and crafters also have an easier time of joining together ordinary objects in a new ways. Sometimes savers like myself hold onto paper items because the image, content or color is exciting or intriguing to us.

At this time of the year, I am drawn to nostalgic holiday images such as the vivid colors in 1940s-1950s Christmas cards.  But mixed media artists can not be trusted to  preserve old Christmas cards the way they are.
We excel at creating new ideas with old stuff.
Suzanna Scott of Sushipot Art Objects collages on  art blocks. Her wonderful Christmas themed art block is shown.

Mixed Media Artists Are Scavengers

Many of us are scavengers and constructionists who will totally interrupt the original look or design and create a very different interpretation of what we originally found.

Vintage Christmas Card Santa Elves Toy Service StationCutting Christmas Cards Into Strips Or Small Squares

For example, we might cut cards into strips of paper and weave  the paper together in a  totally new pattern. Or  we are apt to randomly tear up cards and reassemble in an abstract with very little resemblance to the original Christmas image.
Many artists cut papers and cards into small squares to form a matrix.

Paper Christmas Trees Using Stacked Circles

On a lovely blog Art Studio 522, I found a mixed media project using cut out circles. The artist cut about 100 circles from 1"-3" in size and stacked the pierced circles in a holiday tree.

Cardboard Star Ornaments And 
Using Vintage Sheet Music in Christmas Inspired Collages
 Christmas Art Bird Collage 
    Another easy paper project is to start off with a cardboard star form and to collage with old Christmas cards right onto the star form. Or you can paint the star white and doodle with a black Sharpie pen as I did last year for an exhibit. In the bird collage, vintage sheet music is collaged.

Adding Embellishments To Mixed Media Christmas Collages 

Jul 09 2012_0172_edited-3
 Mixed Media Collage With Beeswax on Board

Using Fabric Or Textiles For Christmas Collages

 Carol Larson Mixed Media Fiber Collage

Additional Update

Linda Hardy contacted me about her beautiful bird collage above , she can now be reached at
   www.doorno2.blogspot.com .

C. Dianne Zweig is the author of Hot Kitchen & Home Collectibles of the 30s, 40s, 50s and Hot Cottage Collectibles for Vintage Style Homes. She is also the Editor of I Antique Online an actively growing internet based resource community for people who buy, sell or collect antiques, collectibles and art. You can find Dianne’s fabulous retro and vintage kitchen, home and cottage collectibles at The Collinsville Antiques Company of New Hartford, CT, a 22,000 feet antique emporium with an in-house retro café. To read more articles by C. Dianne Zweig click on this link: C. Dianne Zweig’s Blog Kitsch ‘n Stuff Email me at dianne@cdiannezweig.com Visit my website, CDianneZweig.com Dianne is a member of: The American Society of Journalists and Authors The Society of Professional Journalists


  1. Thanks for the tips! I save the fronts of beautiful Christmas cards and punch a hole in the top left corner. I attach them to gifts with gold cord, raffia, or whatever else I might have saved. I can write a note on the back of the card.


  2. I LOVE these ideas! I love paper crafting, it's quick and very rewarding.

  3. Love these ideas but particularly the circle Christmas trees - what a great project!

  4. The Christmas bird that you suggest may be made using old Christmas cards above, is mine. It is copyrighted and I would appreciate you deleting it or at the very least giving the original artist some credit. Copyright 2012, Linda Baker Hardy www.doorno2.blogspot.com

    Please ask before using, not everything is free for the taking just because it's on Pinterest.

    1. Linda,

      If the image you are referring to is the red backgrond with a bird, there is a hyperlink right under the image. It has always been there. I should think you would welcome the traffic back to your image. I will add your blog link as well www.doorno2.blogspot.com