Get Ready for the Holidays (to be over): What to do with all those Holiday Cards?

The clean up from the holidays is underway, and you’re staring at a pile of holiday cards (and let’s not forget the pile of unused cards you bought yourself but never mailed).  Wondering what to do with them?  Here are a few ideas if recycling them just breaks your heart.


  • Make your own gift tags and gift decorations, pack them away with your supplies for next year!  Here are a few I made from this year’s cards that we received:

Snowmen gift tag, from a Christmas card

Ornament gift tag, made from a Christmas card

  • Create ornaments from this year’s cards for next year’s tree:

Christmas Card Ornament from

Christmas Card Ornament from

  • You can make a really pretty wreath that you can hang for the whole season:

Wreath from Recycled Cards, from Good Housekeeping

  • Take the photo cards and punch a hole in the top left corner, tie together with ribbon, and create a coffee table book of the photos that you can enjoy throughout the year!

My Favorite thing to do with holiday cards – DONATE TO CHARITY!!

St Jude’s Ranch has a recycled card program, and they accept your used greeting cards from any occasion:   Any 5×7 card or smaller can be used, as long as they’re folded cards (not flat postcards) and there is no hand-written messages on the front half of the card.   The result is a beautiful new card made by children and volunteers. Operated by Kids’ Corp., a program designed to teach entrepreneurship skills, the children at the Ranch participate in making the new “green” cards by removing the front and attaching a new back.   Why not start a drive with some of your neighbors, friends or family to collect all the donate-able cards for a group of you, and mail them together?

By the way – have leftover cards you purchased that you didn’t send, but don’t want to send out again next year (“everyone has already seen this one!”)?  How about setting aside some to mail to the military next year?

No matter what, if you’re keeping your cards, keep them with a purpose.  Otherwise… let them go.  It doesn’t mean letting go of the wonderful wishes your friends and family sent this season!



1 Comment

  1. Rebecca Stapler

    Great ideas. I love the wreath. That is fabulous! I can’t bear to toss the photo cards, so I put them in an “old fashioned” album — you know, the kind with slots for photos 😉


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