Sep 10, 2015

5 Tips for Making Cards to Give to Non Crafters

Honest moment here -- a lot of our friends and family tell us that they like our cards, but maybe just a few of them really don't.  They think we:
  • make stuff that looks home made and not in a good way,
  • have too much time on our hands, and
  • spend too much money making stuff that looks home made and not in a good way.
Since this card is going to someone I haven't met (new neighbor), and I'm guessing she isn't a paper crafter, I set out to make something that would not look home made/not in a good way. 

Decided to make a coordinating envelope because I could --

I have no idea if I succeeded because our recipients usually don't say things like "wow, this is really juvenile."  They nod and say thanks and then talk about us behind our backs.  Whatever.  They're in therapy and we aren't.  So there.

I used these tips to create what I hope is a card that works for a non crafter:
  1. It fits easily into an envelope! 
  2. The sentiment makes sense to, and doesn't offend, the recipient.  Puns will work, depending on the recipient.  But slang, such as "Xmas," or "luv" might not.  Some folks even object to "congrats."  Suggesting a non crafter follow his or her bliss might leave the recipient confused.  Therefore, unless you know your recipient well, avoid slang and use complete, correctly spelled, and frequently used, words or phrases.
  3. Some trends are only trends in the papercrafting community, while others cross over into the general pop.  Example:  handwritten (or bold scripty) fonts are everywhere, but sequins not so much.  
  4. Stamp or print an inside sentiment.  Whenever a friend visits, we inevitably end up in my craft room, where I show them my stuff.  Every single non crafter opens the cards and comments that there is no sentiment on the inside.  (I don't have one for this card, so a hand note will have to suffice.)
  5.  Make it well.  Total ink coverage, straight sentiment, etc.  You know the drill.  These are qualities that everything we make should have, but a crafter might understand slightly spotty ink coverage -- a non crafter won't.  
Any other ideas?  Share them -- we can all learn!


MOOD WHEN DONE = Happy to be a Paper Crafter!


Hannelie said...

Love reading your thoughts... food for... well thought !

Laura Norris said...

Love this post! I can relate to all of the things you mentioned. Especially the inside sentiment! Super cute card too!

Joan B said...

Thanks. I need more "inside sentiment" stamps!

Joan B said...

Thanks Hannelie.

Jennifer Scull said...

such a great looking card with the fun pineapples! I am sure your new neighbors enjoyed it, even if they didn't say anything to you.

I rarely add anything to the inside of my cards, unless I am immediately giving them away. that way I can add something when it's time to give them and I know more of the reason behind the card. plus I write big and need all the room I can get. ;)

thanks so much for stopping by my blog and leaving such encouraging comments! it means a lot!

enjoy your day! :)

Tracey McNeely said...

Joan can I get inside your head? Love your theories and asides! LOVE love this super professional and cool card!

Concord & 9th said...

We love this post! SO FUN (and funny)!
Greg & Angie

Susan said...

Great card Joan! Love the bright colors. You make great points about cards for non-paperstampers - sometimes it's so easy to get pulled into trendy stuff - then I wonder 6 months later why I ever bought that. Example - I finally caved in and bought some sequins and now they are just sitting on my desk - I just can't figure out how to make them look good on a card! Classic is always best. :)

maria f. said...

Your title caught my eye. Great post.

Leslie Miller said...

First, I love your card! The colors, the design -- outstanding and infinitely cheerful. I agree with your thoughts more and more all the time. Then sometimes I think "why make a hand stamped card if it doesn't look hand stamped". I mean hand stamped in a good way. Among the cards I sell, the ones with more layers and doodads get snatched up quickly, so I have to wonder. I'm trying to reach some kind of in between spot I guess. I totally agree about the sentiments, and while I love a well-turned phrase, I do prefer usable, everyday sentiments.

I Card Everyone said...

Hi Joan. LOve the pineapples - just bought wrapping paper that [I swear YOU might have stamped by hand] looks exactly like this - and I love it. I may be your only skeptic today ...
A recent conversation with daughter#1: N: mom your cards are so cute. Me: thanks... do you need any? N: no, I don't give cards, I'm terrible about that. N's son Sam [age 9]: what's the big deal about a card, anyway? Me: Remember the card I brought you after your surgery [two years prior]? Sam: OH the one about the toads? Yeah, that was funny. Me: How did it make you feel? Sam: It made me feel happy. Me: That's the 'big deal' about cards, Sam. Someone took the time to say what was in their heart, just for you. Sam: Oh. Yeah, that is nice, Grammy."
Blotchy, crooked, imperfect - that's me in a nut shell - the people that get our cards are, more than likely, grateful and sincere if they say thank you. I'm betting your neighbor loved the thought, even if she isn't a paper crafter. She'd be crazy not to. "For reals."

TK said...

LOVE this! You said it straight from the heart and touched so many of ours... Nice card too!

~amy~ said...

Well, she's going to love this.
who wouldn't?

Karen @ Misplaced Mojo said...

Great topic and I totally agree! I often wonder what some manufacturers think. Case in point... we're all crazy for Tim Holtz crazy birds and blueprints, but what would a non-crafter think of those?!? Watercolor is all the rage, but its not everyone's style so its another technique I love to play with but wouldn't use for a non-crafter card. My 80 year old dad would not get it, and that is the standard I use for cards going to non-crafters. Would my dad get it??? No? then save it for a crafty friend :-)

theclagues said...

I usually do an inside sentiment AND repeat one of the images from the front -like i'd put the pineapple on the bottom right corner of the inside too, and also on the envelope too! But then i tend to make cards with specific people/events in mind, rather than have a stash of prepared ones. I have found the Winnie & Walter 'the big, the bold...' sets really handy for supplying lots of great words you can put together for the inside.

wienerhoneymooners said...

I show my mom my cards....every time she opens them...EVERY time I say, I dont have a sentiment inside yet...... LOL..

Chris O said...

Joan, love this card, already sparking ideas! Just got introduced to your blog by Gina K. Love your writing and can so relate to your thoughts. Regarding sentiments, I often give sets of cards as gifts (don't we all?) and got some feedback early on that some recipients prefer no sentiment on the cards so they are more versatile. Now I usually include a set of pre-stamped sentiments on white cut with different label dies with dimensionals on the back. My sister gave me the highest compliment one time when she eagerly started using the cards I'd just given her, right in front of me. Validation! :)

KT said...

You Are too funny. Just found you through Gina K.,s page. Boy, did you lift me up. Thanks Joan I am a fan.

Unknown said...

This is crazy sweet DIY tutorial!