First attempt at handmade card - help!

First of all, a big thank you to all of you who have shared your handmade creations in the forum threads. You have inspired me! I have been so nervous to try my own.

I decided to give it a go this weekend and create my first handmade postcard. I repurposed an illustrated children’s book into a postcard (and perhaps additional postcards if all goes well). I used a heavy amount of glue stick to adhere to the card stock. My question is, will this survive the mail as is? It seems fine now, but we all know how brutal the journey could be. Do you typically send such cards that you glue down stamped as is or do you put them in an envelope?

Any advice is welcome :slight_smile: I may just send a test card to someone I know to see how it holds up.


Good for you for doing your first card! Keep it up - it’s fun right?

If it’s all one piece glued to another, it will probably be fine, just put it under a book overnight.

If it’s multiple pieces glued to one piece, I’d use an envelope - there will be more edges that could lift or get caught on the postal machines & damage the card, but trying it out locally can give you so some idea if it will hold up.


I suggest that you send a card to yourself or any of your dear ones , to see if it can survive the transit.
If you believe that the card is strong enough to go without a envelope you may do that, I have recieved handmade cards both with and without envelopes

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I send them without an envelope. Make sure there aren’t any edges sticking up to catch on things and go for it! Learning as you go along is part of the process. :smiley:

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I send without envelope.
Also shop bought cards sometimes get damaged, so if all is well glued, I trust it. There’s always a risk, but still I prefer postcards without envelope.

But, some glue sticks dry (?) or don’t take the weather changes well.
Some of my cards have my address in a piece of paper, that is glued to the card, and only a sticker or piece of washi tape is holding it in the card.

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If you make sure all the corners and edges are glued down, it should survive the journey.

(I once sent a normal shopbought card to my boyfriend. It arrived looking like it had been mauled by a dog. And I’ve received full on collages on cards that arrived just fine. So I guess there is also a little bit of luck involved. :woman_shrugging: )

I send them without envelope. Recently I sent one with a looser part (it was only glued on one side) and protected it with washi tape which can be removed easily after receiving.

Thank you all for your responses. I think I’ll send my first one to my nieces on the other side of the country. That’s still a hearty 2300 mile journey. Looking at my card now that it has set overnight, I feel pretty confident that it will make it without an envelope. * fingers crossed *


The two most important things to consider when sending a naked collage card (in my opinion) are:

  1. Sealed edges. I try to use thin paper (cut-outs from magazines work well) to keep the collage as flat as possible and avoid “steps” between the layers that could catch on equipment. To prevent layers from separating, and to smooth over any ridges, I use a wide foam brush to seal the whole card–including the outer edges–with Mod Podge or a similar sealing product. In my experience, the glue settles nicely into an even layer and doesn’t curl the paper beyond repair (although I recommend pressing the card under heavy books once it dries).

  2. Consistent adhesion between the layers. Using a glue stick or wet glue can curl the paper or create bumps, so I recommend applying your collage pieces to a sheet of double-sided adhesive like this one before cutting them out and applying them.

I send almost all handmade cards sans envelope, assuming some degree of risk of death by sorting machine. But if your card is one that you are particularly proud of, there is no harm in using an envelope.

Another important note: If your card exceeds the thickness parameters set for postcards, you will need to pay a higher rate of postage (especially if the card is considered non-machinable). You can always scan your collages, edit them to your liking, and have your collages printed professionally on paper that will meet the thickness standards for the regular postcard rate.


I use a clear cellophane envelope. Stamp must go on the outside to go through the machine. They work great and protect my hard work. I get them by the hundred from Amazon.

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Check first with your postal service, I don’t think these are allowed in every country.

If you need a guinea pig to test it out… :hamster: send away! I’m up for the task!

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I also find the variant best. Shipping as a postcard goes. Have tested it has worked in Germany.
Stamp must of course be on the foil. Whether it is really allowed? No idea.
Of course, there are the opinions, very far apart, because of plastic, plastic additionally send.
But I save elsewhere for it more plastic.

I would love to see the card you created. All homemade cards are so unique. I bet it turned out wonderfully.

I taped the ends of my handmade postcard so there is less chance of the corners tearing off. You can use clear tape or pretty washi tapes. Happy crafting!