Saturday, December 15, 2018

Altenew Educator Certification Program - Holiday Envelopes

Hello!  I'm here today with a project for my next class for my Level III Class, "Holiday Envelopes" which is all about creative ways to dress up your envelopes when you send out your Holiday Cards.  Since I made a particularly special card yesterday and I knew this Class was next in my lineup, I planned to create a matching envelope for that card.  Just as a little reminder of that card, here is that card that I made to put in with my daughter's Christmas Presents.  We normally get a Movie Gift Card for the family, but this year since we are closer, and are spending more time with them, we wanted to forgo the Movie Gift card and get a gift for each of them.  We have something special for our daughter this year and I wanted to make a special card to go with it.
No photograph could possibly capture the absolute elegance of this card but I still wanted to make an envelope to go with it.  The card is an unusual size (4 x 7) so it would need a special envelope to go with it to accommodate the size and thickness of the card.

I have an envelope punch board, but I prefer to make a different style so I learned a long time ago how to make my own.  I took photos along the way to show you how I do it.
Start with an 8.5 x 11-inch sheet of whatever paper you want to make your envelope from.  My primary choice is a Shimmer Vellum that is lightweight, but works really well for envelopes because it is not as heavy as even text weight paper.  Because most of my specialty cards are for Weddings, I have silver and a few different shades of gold.  This particular one is Antique Gold Metallic.  My mom picked up a bunch of these for me a few years ago at Hobby Lobby when they were on sale for .25 cents per sheet.  Placing the paper in your Scor-Pal horizontally, figure out where you want your first score line to be; somewhere between 3.5 - 4 inches is standard.  It will be different for a larger card, but for my card that is 4 x 7 inches, I chose 3.75 inches.  I have an older Scor-Pal and mine does not have a score line at the measurement, for that so I scooted my paper over ¼ inch and then score at the 4-inch line.  I wanted 4¾ inches in between the score lines to accommodate the thickness of the card.  You'll need to choose a width that will work for your card.  For instance, if you have a pretty flat 5 x 7 card, you will want to allow 5¼ inches between the score lines.  Score at whatever measurement you need.  You'll have something that looks similar to this image.

I have the card in a plastic sleeve so that it won't get messed up or dirty while I'm working on the envelope.  I put all of my cards in these little sleeves with envelopes that you can get lots of different places.  My last batch of these I got from Amazon here, but you can buy them by the case if needed at places like U-Line.  I put a lot of time and effort into my cards, so I don't want them dirtied up before I give them away or use them.  If you want to sell your cards, you really need to do this as well.  You can get various sizes so I usually order A7 and A2.  I only use A7 occasionally, so I only buy one pack of those at a time.  I make around 250— 300 cards a year, so I buy 3 or 4 packages of bags at a time.  Storage space for a case of bags would take way too much room so I like the option of the smaller 100 packs.  It's not as cost effective to buy them that way, but I'm okay with that.

Next, you want to rotate your paper 90 degrees to put it in a portrait orientation and score at the ½ inch mark on each side of the paper like the image on the left.  I usually rotate my paper 180 degrees to do the other side, but you can just as easily score it at 10.5 inches. Then crease all of your score lines firmly and open it back up.  Your paper should look like the image on the right-hand side.  
Next, you want to trim off the excess paper from the ½ inch score lines.  This is pretty much the only time I get out my Fiskars trimmer that has a wire guide but you can use scissors if that is what you have. When I first started making cards, I only had a smaller little guillotine trimmer, so I used Scissors to make envelopes back then. 

I start with my blade at the bottom of the paper and cut up to the horizontal score line.  Then I lift my blade, skipping the next section and place it back down at the top horizontal line, repeating the same process on the other side.  When you are finished, it should look like this.

I just snip those pieces off with a pair of scissors so that you have something that looks like this:

Next, you want to fold the side flaps behind the center section and round the 4 corners of the center section.  Then fold them back in the normal way and do the other four corners.  This just makes for a cleaner presentation. 

Now you ready to put the envelope together.  Rotate the paper so that the bottom flap is closest to you.  

If you put double sided tape on the flaps that are sticking out, you'll have adhesive where you don't want it.  You can use any type of dry adhesive for this like a tape runner.  Liquid adhesive is a bit messy so I don't recommend that.  Remove the release paper and fold the bottom section up onto the flaps.  
As you can see from this image, my measurements accommodated the additional layers and dimension and it slips right into the envelope very easily.  
Normally, you would also want to put a strip of adhesive along the top line as well, but since I am putting this in a box with her present, I'm going to use a small bit of temporary adhesive so she doesn't have to tear up the envelope to get to it.  Since I decorated the envelope to go with the card for my class project, I don't want her to have to tear it up.  But now you are ready to decorate your envelope.

I wanted to use the same stencil that I used for her card, so I carefully positioned the stencil and masked off the rest of the area to make sure it stayed clean.  Using the same Decofoil Transfer Gel, I carefully applied a layer, putting any excess back into the jar.  Since this is much thinner than cardstock, I should have used a thinner coat so don't get too heavy-handed.  It took quite a while for mine to dry.  Here's a photo of what it looks like when you apply the transfer gel.  It goes on white but dries clear.
Once it is completely clear, you are ready to run it through your laminator or Minc Machine with the foil.  I wanted to use the same Emerald Watercolor Decofoil, so I did.  Here is my finished Holiday Envelope that matches my card.

Thank you so much for stopping back by to see my 'Holiday Envelopes" class project.  You can use stamps, dies, stencils, shimmer sprays, and a whole host of other options.  We spend so much time making a special card and we should consider spending a little time for the much prettier presentation by embellishing the envelopes on special cards.  It might just be a simple stamp on the back of the flap that says "Snail Mail" or any other sentiment we want to use.  Give it a try and just think of how the recipient will smile before they even open the envelope.    


  1. This is quite impressive, Vicki! I love the matching envelope! What an amazing card with the perfect envelope! I am so glad that you enter your beautiful work in Altenew AECP assignment Gallery. Awesome details and design! Super work!

  2. That emerald watercolur is absolutely luscious. Such a beautiful card and envelope. I've never done anything with my envelopes. Though I think creative ways to decorate re-used envelopes could be a great way to go. Thanks for the inspiration.


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