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Cards for Troops Drive is on again!

In partnership with my creative colleague, Susan from Papercraft Central I’m excited to be involved with the 2020 Cards for Troops Drive.  We are collecting handmade cards to send to deployed troops so they can write home to their loved ones.

Staying Connected

We are all discovering firsthand how important it is to stay connected with our friends and family. Technology makes it easier for us to keep in touch with those who are important to us. BUT imagine being away on deployment and not being able to email, text, phone or video chat with our loved ones for weeks or even months. For most of us, it would be a struggle.  This is exactly the situation our deployed troops and their nearest and dearest face every day.

How can we help?

Make a card and donate it to cards for troops! Everyone loves receiving handmade cards. Receiving happy mail from loved ones stationed half a world away makes hearts soar! This initiative really makes a difference in the lives of the military personnel stationed overseas by assisting them to stay connected with their families.

My creative friends made and donated 620 cards to the drive last year!  If you want to find out more about my Creative Crew’s contribution to last year’s drive, you read all about here.

Can the Creative Crew beat 620 cards this year?

How fabulous would that be?

Share the joy

Many of us are exploring ways to spread a little joy to others during these tough times. As creatives, we have been given a wonderful talent that we can use to brighten someone’s day.

Sadly, we can’t get together to create in-person right now, but we can create alone.

There is a wonderful thing call technology so we can create together via video chat from the safety of our own homes.  We can even enjoy our favorite tipple (in moderation of course) while crafting and not have to worry about driving home.

So let’s get creating…

Here are a few tips to help with your cards:

  • All cards MUST be handmade
  • Please avoid glitter and sparkly embellishments that may fall off. Our troops don’t want bling on their uniform when they on covert operations. The glitter and wayward rhinestones catch the light like strobe lights a disco ball! Not ideal when you are hiding from insurgents!
  • The card and envelope should be less than 5mm thick – avoid big thick bows and bulky embellishments that could get caught in the post-processing machines.
  • Standard C6 sized cards are preferred (approx 15cm x 10.5cm x 5mm)
  • Include an envelope with your card.
  • Don’t forget to decorate the inside of the card and the envelope too.
  • On the back of the card, remember to stamp/write “Handmade by: ” and your name.
  • Pack each handmade card and envelope in their own individual cellophane bag.
  • The drive runs from now until 30 September 2020 – so your cards must reach me BEFORE 25 September 2020 so I can package them and deliver them.

All cards needed

This means you can make whatever themed cards you like. I love having free rein! Don’t you?

Here are some themes to get you started:
  • Thinking of you
  • Just for you
  • Birthday
  • Hello
  • Wedding
  • Engagement
  • Happy Anniversary
  • I love You
  • Happy Valentine’s Day
  • Graduation
  • Well Done
  • You’re Amazing
  • Friendship
  • Baby Cards
  • Male themed cards
  • Happy retirement
  • Happy New Hone
  • Kids
  • Teenagers
  • Son
  • Daughter
  • Mum
  • Dad
  • Grandparents
  • Get Well
  • Sympathy
  • Condolences
  • Pet Sympathy
  • We’ll get through this
  • Messages of support
  • Encouragement
  • Thank you
  • Friendship
  • Bridal Shower / Kitchen Tea
  • Happy Fathers’ Day
  • Happy Mothers’ Day
  • Merry Christmas
  • Happy Halloween
  • Happy Hanukkah
  • Happy New Year
  • Happy Chinese New Year
  • Happy Easter
  • Rosh Hashanah
  • Happy Diwali
  • Blessed Ramadan
  • Christening
  • Baptism
  • First Communion / Holy confirmation
  • You’re leaving
  • Sorry
  • I miss you

I’m sure you can find a theme to suit you out of those 51 diverse suggestions or perhaps you can think of others that I’ve missed?

Give old handmade cards a new life.

Maybe you don’t have many card-making supplies at home except for some adhesive or glue and a bit of white or vanilla card stock (GASP!). You can still get involved.

Let me explain…

If you are anything like me, you probably have a box full of lovely handmade cards that you have collected over the years.  They are lovely and treasured and brought you much joy but now they sit idly on the shelf. Why not use them to spread joy?

How do I do that?

Take a photo of the handmade card and the message inside (to keep it for future happy days) then either:

  1. Glue a cardstock or high-quality paper insert to the inside of the card covering any writing. You could add another sentiment or leave it blank. OR
  2. Cut the front off the card and stick this to a new coordinating card base.

This is the ultimate way to reuse and recycle as it brings joy and happiness. You are basically sharing the love.

I am NOT advocating cutting up the precious cards from your deceased grandparents or the love of your life. Definitely, keep the cards that are most cherished and special to you!

I have lots of store-bought cards

Not a problem. Get creative!

Why not fussy-cut images or die-cut shapes and layer these on a new card base?

Or create a collage of images on a new card?

Maybe use the store-bought card front the same way you would use Designer Series Paper (DSP) (patterned paper) as a background.  You could even emboss it with an embossing folder and your die cutting machine or stamp it with Versamark and heat emboss it. Then add a sentiment (words) (stamped or printed from the computer on card stock) and you have a completely new handmade card.

Recycling and upcycling at its finest!

It’s so awesome to give those forgotten treasured cards another opportunity to bring joy!

Can I use my swaps?

Many cardmakers have heaps of swap cards or card fronts that they’ve received at events. Most times after we’ve looked at the ideas and taken a photo of our favourites, these swaps get relegated to storage.  Give these cards a new lease on life!

If it’s just the card front attach it to a new base and let it bring happiness.  Often these cards are not our “style” but someone else will love and treasure them.

Do I have to use Stampin’ Up! products exclusively?

Not at all! Variety is the spice of life. Even the most dedicated Stampin’ Up! enthusiast has other brands in their stash. (Yes I do too!)

Every crafter has items in their stash that they’ve bought on a whim or stamps they’ve never used.  Now is the time to have a little fun and use them!

Of course, if you need more supplies, I’m happy to help. Just pop over to my Online Stampin’ Up! store or contact me.

What happens to my card if it includes bling, glitter, glittery paper or washi tape or is too bulky?

Each handmade card will undergo a rub test. If glitter or bling comes off in my hands, your lovingly created handmade card will be donated to another local cause.  We don’t want to put our military personnel at risk but your card will definitely go to a good home.

I have a handy little gauge from the post office that measures the thickness of cards and envelopes so I’ll test each card to ensure your work of art doesn’t get caught in or ruined by one of the post-processing machines. I will divide these cards between a few groups that need them.

Do you know of a group that could do with a little handmade love?

Be sure to leave a comment below with your suggestion.

I’ve made my cards what do I do with them?

Either post or deliver them to me or contact me to arrange a pick-up. Email me for my postal address.

Well…what are you waiting for?

Let’s get creating!

If you need more information, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me either by leaving a comment below or by selecting contact me from the menu or email me.

Thanks in advance for your continued support. I can’t wait to see all your amazing creations.

Until next time… Happy creating!

Chrissy

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