Handmade Business Cards

I needed a handful of business cards for an art fair I was doing. I only needed a small run and it seemed like a bit of a waste to order such a small batch from a professional service. There are a few professional printers that I like to use for higher runs and business products. I decided to look into DIY options for handmade business cards.

I looked through some ideas on Pinterest. I was particularly interested in these watercolor business cards I found made by Akula Kreative. The cards looked super clean and each one was one of a kind. This was a win win for a DIY project.

Handmade business card

Business card inspiration

What I Did

The recommended custom clear stamp was not available so I decided to make my own rubber stamp. I looked through some tutorials and decided to go with the Parchment Paper Method for transferring ink to the stamp for carving. Instead of going out and buying watercolors I just used acrylics that I already had.

Materials

  • Speedball® Speedy Carve Kit $10-$20 from Michael’s (cost depending on how many cutters included)
  • Parchment paper from grocery store $4.31 (including tax)
  • Black ink pad from Staples $2-3 (I found a tutorial to make your own stamp pad but I decided not to go this route)
  • An hour to carve the stamp (more if the design is complicated)
DIY Handmade business cards

DIY business cards try #1

Thoughts

The text on the card doesn’t look as clean as the inspiration. I think this is because the stamp was carved by hand instead of being machine made. Instead of being a bad thing I decided that I liked the handmade business card look and that this added to the meaning of the card.

The acrylic doesn’t look the greatest. I could have tried again and watered the paint down more. Instead of fussing with it I decided to just go without a background color. So far I’ve probably handed out 50 of these and everyone seems to be pleased with them.

DIY business card black and white

DIY business cards final product

Further Reading: Tutorials

Rubber Stamp Materials – particularly helpful if you are new to carving your own stamps like I was

Parchment Paper Method

Recycled Security Envelope Project by Joey Ramone

Check out these Recycled Security Envelope Flowers made by Joey Ramone. He uses a traditional Japanese Kusudama flower technique using recycled envelopes. Very fun and what a wonderful combination!

I made these flowers using 2-inch paper squares (each flower needs five squares) cut from security envelopes (the sort which you tend to get bills and stuff in from companies, and it has a pattern printed on the inside, usually in blue or grey). I used this wonderful tutorial from Folding Trees: foldingtrees.com/2008/11/kusudama-tutorial-part-1/
They’re so easy to make and I think they’re really effective!

These Kusudama flowers would not qualify as origami because they are made with cuts and glue. Techniques using cuts and glue are categorized as kirigami which is an origami variation. Kirigami is made out of single piece of paper.

Recycled Security Envelope Assorted

Recycled Security Envelope Assorted

These assorted flowers are displayed wonderfully. I like the paper that is they are featured on. The interior and exterior shadows on the flowers are also interesting. I wonder how they would look backlit?

Recycled Security Envelope Red

Recycled Security Envelope Red

Do you notice that the flower pedals are two layers thick? Did you notice how there is a sliver of red pattern around the outsides of the pedals? Can you see through the white parts of the envelope to the subtle patterns beneath?

Bonus points for anyone who can find a picture of this original red envelope! I find this one very interesting because there was obviously some sort of advertising or instructions on the envelope. This text becomes completely illegible in the flower and adds a element of flair.