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Blog > Papercraft Postcard Tutorial

Annie (aka freezeframe03) is back with another great DIY tutorial, this time featuring paper postcards! She’s made dozens of beautiful papercrafted postcards over the years, and is here to guide you on how to make the postcard below. Enjoy!

A yellow and green postcard with some flowers glued to it, and the sentence Live the live you've imagined written on it.

The most important thing in making a papercrafted postcard is to make sure it is sturdy and nothing added to it will come loose in the mail.

I began with a 4”×6” (10×15cm) piece of 70lb (114 g/m2) sketch/drawing papers. I sprayed them with Distress Oxide Spray then sprayed one of them again through a stencil. I chose the one on the right to work with this time.

Crafting materials: papers, stencils and ink

Next, I’ve rubber stamped the words with a waterproof archival ink, and toned down the brightness of the background paint by rubbing the ink over it lightly and darkened the edges.

Rubberstamp being applied on the postcard

I’ve used cutting dies to cut flowers and leaves from the same 70lb sketch/drawing paper. You can also cut these by hand, if you’d like, using your drawings or a template you’ve downloaded.

Using cut dies to make the flower shapes

I’ve painted them with watercolors. (Sometimes you just have to hope your mail won’t get rained on.)

Cut out flowers, after being painted with watercolors

Before gluing the flowers to the postcard, I splattered thinned black acrylic paint to the background. I use a spray glue to adhere the flowers and leaves to the background. I then press them down firmly with a brayer. When dry, if there are any loose edges, I use a fine tip glue to get underneath the loose area and glue it down firmly.

Gluing materials

When my postcard front is finished, I glue it to a heavier paper (this Canson XL paper is 98lb, or 160 g/m2). I glue it to a piece larger than my postcard then trim around the postcard. Set the postcard under a flat weight so that it dries flat. Check the edges to make sure they are one. Any loose edges can be glued with a fine tip glue. If you don’t have a fine tip for your glue, put some on a toothpick to smear where needed.

Stucking some sturdy paper to the back of the card

It is now a sturdy piece of art that will travel through the mail easily and not get caught in any of the postal machines.

Art can sometimes leave the finished piece warped and even messy on the back. Working on one paper to create your art then adhering it to a clean paper will help to flatten the piece and you don’t have to worry about a messy backside.

The final postcard!

The back can be decorated also, just like any other postcard.

The decorated back side of the postcard

Within the United States, a papercrafted postcard can be mailed at the regular postcard rate (unless you’ve added something that will make in non-machinable — in that case, extra postage is needed.

There are so many different ways to make a papercraft art postcard. But as I mentioned previously, make sure it is glued and put together well and that it is sturdy enough to withstand the traveling it will do. Most of my handmade postcards arrive at their destinations as if they were hand delivered.

If you have any questions at all or need some further detailed info, I am more than happy to help out with both.

Thank you Annie, that was brilliant! Check out Annie’s blog for inspiration in all kinds of crafts and art projects, and also this great topic on the forum where postcrossers post their creations.

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62 comments so far

Gagaie, France
Beautiful handmade postcard. ♥
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MagiaHobbs, Germany
Really beautiful!
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alienforme, Russia
I do not like handmade postcards, but I would not refuse such
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sandrine4, Finland
Beautiful handmade card ❤️ I like it very much.
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ned44440, Ireland
Fabulous
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MishaMellow70, United States of America
Love it! Thank you for sharing this with us!
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Eason_k_cathe, Portugal
Wow. Thank you for sharing! I´d love to make one handmade following this tutorial.
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kdpop2021, Taiwan
awesome!!
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mysweetlife63, United States of America
Annie,
Thank you so much! Beautiful card & I love the depth. I have to try this, looks so fun! And thanks for the pics of your glue choices, that really helps.
d
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Pinkee, Canada
Thank you Annie for your DIY tutorial on the handmade card. It is beautiful. Personally, half of my postcards are DIY watercolour cards and my recipients truly appreciate it. Thank you for sharing.
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beesknees, United States of America
Gorgeous, hope you get my name one day. If I get yours I will have to step it up!
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H1ldeke, Belgium
Oooh waaw really nice ! 👍
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Nadjafee, Germany
Such a beautiful card! I need to get out my dies...
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ValerieJG-USA, United States of America
Thanks Annie! This is very pretty!
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obstakel, Netherlands
When using watercolours it can be useful to use a fixative spray afterwards so the card is a little more waterproof (clear nailpolish also works in a pinch!).
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abbyaguas, Philippines
I love postcrossers who make such an effort on sending cards to their recipients~ I wonder if you spent hours on these.
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jm1122, United States of America
Great tutorial!
Annie is the reason I joined Postcrossing! Many years ago, I read one of her calendar pages on Flickr that mentioned she had mailed a card to Russia through Postcrossing. Not knowing what that was, I did some research and joined in the fun!
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mountainangel33, United States of America
Love this!!
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Mosshumla, Sweden
Aw, that's a nice piece of postcard art! Would love to receive something similar to this.
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WMiddel, Netherlands
These are the kinds of handmade postcards that are the best!
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smkyqtzxtl, United States of America
Your tutorial was very clea. I have read others and couldn’t figure out what was going on. I appreciate you taking the time to do this.
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dobebeth13, United States of America
That is very beautiful. I enjoy making my homemade postcards!
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Sandristica, Spain
Beautiful!
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OlgaBy, Belarus
Bravo! how many amazing talented people are around, 💫thank you very much for the story about it !!!🥰
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Terrierinarttu, Finland
Wauhh, really lovely card!
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gRapEsAndLemons, United States of America
Thank you for sharing, i like how it turned out- quite pretty- I make mine all the time, and always wondered if others did too! I use all sorts of stuff gluing them down and when isee they made it across the world its reassuring and satisfying to know someone got it and appreciates it. Make sure you hand it to a postal worker if it is embellsihed!
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borntoorganize, United States of America
Thank you for sharing your process. I love your card!
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freezeframe03, United States of America
Thank you all for your kind comments. I love sharing ideas and hope this encourages other artists and crafters to make more art and send it out into the world.
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volvomom, United States of America
Thank you for this! Just beautiful work!
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cutetaiki, Indonesia
Wonderful artwork
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summerrrr, China
wow,that's amazing!must be a person who really love life.
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manencov, Romania
Annie you are an amazing artist. I like your ideas but talent has its say. I like the modern and the ancient combined perfectly.
Congratulations!
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ladymelody, France
Thanks a lot for share with us your beautiful work *_*
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bhuney05, United States of America
You make it look so easy that I want to attempt it! Your work looks great!
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JessicaSnailMail, Brazil
❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤
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wurzelsofie, Germany
What a lovely handmade card! :-D
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coleandjojo, United States of America
Great postcard! I haven't tried the distress ink sprays but I love the stamp pads in distress oxide!!
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AwesomeAubri, United States of America
wow that is stunning!
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silverdragonia, United States of America
What a beautiful card! Breaking down the steps really showcases the time and effort that goes into these handmade cards - at all skill levels. I haven't tried my hand yet, but as a papercrafter this is right down my alley. I do hope post this sways more people to not 'dislike' handmade cards as much as I've seen.
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emoffdayz, United States of America
So beautifuland keep it up the great art postcards and I would like to have more handmade postcards but anything will do good as long isn't repeating and beautiful as always happy postcrossing! Everybody in the world :)
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mossh, United Kingdom
Hi Annie, amazing! Am going to try to replicate but I suspect my best effort will look like three blobs on a background of blob.
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sing613, China
Unique postcard, very beautiful
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geosmin_petrichor, Germany
Lovely!!!
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DarkMaga, Canada
Beautiful!
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freezeframe03, United States of America
Thank you for all these kind comments! I hope more postcrossers will become open to receiving handmade postcards.
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orange_memo, United States of America
Simply artsy!
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Flippie, Canada
Thank you Annie for sharing your very clear instructions for making those great hand made cards.
I hope to find one, one day in my mailbox from you.
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mailfromnanning, China
So beautiful!
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HookedonPostcards, Canada
Thank you again for sharing. So generous. And, so beautiful!
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Augustina1, Netherlands
Wow! That’s beautiful.
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marica_t, United States of America
Wow, beautiful! :)
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betslets, United States of America
First, I was drawn to your beautiful homemade card because I really adore daisies. I've received some wonderful homemade cards over the years (most prior to joining Postcrossing) and I've really appreciated the time and love that went into them. I think one reason some people say they prefer not getting "homemade" postcards is probably due to some very poor examples of sincere effort made on ones they might have received. All cards can be special.
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Blue69, France
Wonderful postcard. Thank you for the tutorial
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Luziaceleste, Brazil
Congrats for your skills, and thanks for your sharing. really nice.
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LandyLin, Taiwan
So beautiful!
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CelesteDolores, United States of America
Lovely! In the USA it costs the same to send a postcard or an envelope internationally. I broke down and bought some envelopes for my homemade cards.
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AnnieYang482, China
So beautiful !I also want to make handmade postcards and send them to my friends!
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QUILTGAL, Canada
That postcard is beautiful! I have made tons of homemade collaged postcards for family. I make sure there is at least 1/2 inch of "empty" card stock around the edges, like a frame, and then I run them through a heat laminating machine but only add laminate to the front, then trim the excess off the sides. They have consistently arrived in perfect shiny condition.
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SweetLeo, China
Thank you for sharing! In Chinese,we called it“心灵手巧”.It means "have clever hands and good sense".
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Nonnie, United States of America
I like this handmade postcard a lot, but I must first check the cost of these materials.
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florencen, Australia
I will never understand how a postcrosser would NOT want a hand made card.I see that often in profiles.I am time poor and not terribly crafty but I have received some beautiful cards in my time.I appreciate the effort and love that goes in to them.
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alkhimovich, Belarus
It's just magic!
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