Is It Cheaper to Make Your Own Christmas Cards and Gifts?

With inflation soaring and prices rising on everything, the holidays can be a stressful time. Right about now, many people are finding they have more people they want to buy Christmas gifts for than they have money to buy gifts. If you have more time than money right now, you might be wondering if it’s cheaper to make your own Christmas cards and gifts than it is to buy them.

The answer to that question: It Depends.

It is definitely possible to save money by making your own Christmas cards — especially if you take a long view and buy reusable supplies like Christmas stamps and Christmas stencils that can be used over and over, year after year. If you are creative, motivated and able to actually finish the projects you start, then yes — you can, indeed, save money by making your own Christmas cards and gifts.

It is also possible to spend a bundle on craft supplies that you will never actually use. So before you go down that road, it’s prudent to take a look at some Christmas card making ideas to get a feel for what you’d like to make, the supplies each design uses and what the costs would amount to for all the cards you’re hoping to make.

One pitfall to beware of: Many of the card making instructions you’ll find posted on the internet exist for the sole purpose of making money for the craft supply manufacturers who make lovely supplies for crafters to use. It is not uncommon to find card designs where the supplies would cost mind-boggling amounts of money to make, and the cards would take countless hours to put together on top of that.

I’m a pretty frugal crafter, and I’ve created a lot of cards without using expensive supplies like a die cutter and dies (although I do have a die cutter now, I made hundreds of cards before I broke down and bought it, so I have a bunch of card making projects and ideas available that do not require expensive dies.

That said, I do think it is necessary to make a small investment in some tools and supplies if you hope to mass produce Christmas cards to give to your loved ones. Please consider getting yourself a good paper cutter or trimmer so you can cut straight lines, and a scoring board or a similar scoring tool so that you can make straight, clean folds on your cards. If you skip this, your card folds will probably look wonky, and that would be embarrassing.

Consider Your Crafting Skill Level

Card making isn’t rocket science, but it definitely requires some practice to make every detail on your cards look perfect. If you aren’t already an experienced crafter, be sure to allocate some extra supplies to practice with — because it is common to make mistakes when you’re stamping, stenciling, coloring, cutting paper, or folding paper to make cards.

Tips for Saving Money on Christmas Cards

Unless you’re already a skilled artist and experienced at working with markers, watercolor paints, colored pencils, or some other media, I’d advise you to skip buying stamps where the images need to be colored in. Instead, if you’re going to use stamped images in your cards, look for stamps featuring silhouetted designs that you can just ink, stamp, and be finished with. Not only will this save you the expense of buying markers, colored pencils, or paints, it will also save you massive quantities of time.

Hope this info is helpful to you as you plan your Christmas celebration. Happy holidays to you and yours!