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I love collecting Christmas cards from friends and family throughout the holidays, but once the season comes to an end, I hate the thought of pitching them.
But what else is a clutter-averse person to do?
Instead, I’ve found simple and clever ways to repurpose them into decorations and keepsakes.
1. Cut out pictures to create gift tags.
Cut out whatever shape you’d like from the front of Christmas cards and make sure there’s no writing on the back.
Use a hole punch to thread ribbon through and attach to your gift.
2. Frame festive cards to use as decorations around your house.
Just find a festive frame or make your own, and stick in your beautifully designed card for a Christmas decoration.
3. Make Christmas bunting for your doorway or fireplace.
Another simple one to spruce up your house: just cut out triangles and a long piece of ribbon or string the length you desire.
Space your triangles evenly apart along the ribbon and begin hot gluing the cards to it. Let dry and, voila, holiday bunting!
4. Create holiday recipe cards with the front pages.
Simply cut out the front of the card and use the back for your recipes.
Save them for yourself or pass them out to family and friends who’ve been asking for the recipe to your signature dish.
5. Cut out pieces for a festive scrapbook page.
If you love scrapbooking, this is a great way to get little pieces for the book.
Cut out images, words and designs from cards to glue onto a Christmas-themed page to give it a unique touch.
6. Make your own Christmas magnets.
Trace out circles on the front of Christmas cards, cut them out, and stick them to the back of clear, flat-backed marbles.
Glue a strong magnet to the back and let it dry.
7. Donate Christmas Cards to St. Jude’s to be repurposed into new cards.
You can send in the front sides (with no writing on the back) of your old Christmas cards for children to remake into new Christmas cards.
Just cut off the front and send it to St Jude’s Ranch for Children, where they provide a safe and therapeutic home for abused and neglected children.
Keep in mind they are unable to accept cards from Hallmark, American Greeting and Disney.
8. Turn them into ornaments for your tree.
These can be as easy or as difficult as you want them to be.
Whether it’s cutting out a simple shape or manipulating the paper into 3D ornaments, Pinterest has tons of ways to make ornaments out of cards — like this one.
9. Create a ringed album of holiday pictures.
If you’re really sentimental like me, it’s hard to get rid of cards, especially personalized ones with messages and family photos.
What I do with these is punch three holes into the side of each and get three metal rings to create a booklet for each year.
10. Make small gift boxes to snazz up your presents.
These make great gift boxes for little things like ornaments, jewelry and more.
There are several ways of making them, but to create a simple box, here are some great step-by-step instructions.
11. Make them into new Christmas cards.
Cut out shapes and letters from old cards, and glue them onto cardstock to create your own unique Christmas cards.
This is also a great way to get your kids involved!
12. Turn them into a garland to wrap around your tree.
This one is pretty similar to the Christmas bunting. Cut out circles from the cards and hot glue them to a piece of ribbon.
Once they’re dry, string them around your tree!
13. Decorate mason jar lids for homemade jams.
Trace the lid on the image you want to cut out of the card, cut it out, and glue it to the lid. It’s simple but it makes your homemade jam a little more festive.
14. Make your own Advent calendar.
This one is gonna take a little more patience and supplies than the rest but is well worth it.
I used the Crafty Nest’s instructions to create mine.
15. Cut them up to make jigsaw puzzles for your kids.
This one is super easy. Cut a card into as many pieces as you’d like (not too small) and give it to your kids to put back together as a fun activity.
16. Use a stencil to cut out Christmas card houses.
Cut out a pattern like this one, and sketch an outline onto your card.
After you cut out the shapes, tape them together and form a cute little elf house to add to your mantel.
17. If you’re feeling really crafty, make a Christmas Card Wreath.
This one will take a bit more time than the rest, but it makes for a great craft to keep you busy while you have a holiday movie playing in the background.
You’ll need a bunch of Christmas cards, scissors, hot glue, red ribbon, toothpicks, a styrofoam circle and this pattern.
18. Decorate plain gift bags and wrapping paper.
You can find simple gift bags for $1.50 at Target like these . Simply glue the front page of a card to it, or cut out shapes and words and get creative.
19. Make coasters for delicious festive drinks.
Grab some mod podge and make your own coasters with pictures from all the Christmas cards you receive.
20. Create your own address book for next year.
Decorate your own notebook, or find a festive one and glue in family photos you get. Write their address below so you have a reminder of everyone you want to send a card to next year!