Artist Trading Card Box

We all have them. Some people have more than others. Some are patterned. Some are solid colors. But rest assured that no matter what your craft of choice is, you’re always going to have scraps…and scraps….and scraps.

Here’s a little solution to eliminate some of those scraps: Go ahead and prep those smaller pieces for Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) or card backgrounds. This way, when you participate in an ATC swap or need a card or a little something to dress up a project or gift, you have it right there at your fingertips.

Artist Trading Cards have been a round for a while, so much that some folks have forgotten the ATC rules.
Size: 2.5” x3.5”
Restrictions: ATCs are just what the name says: Artist TRADING Cards, not Artist SELLING Cards. ATCs developed among artistic groups as a way to have a little piece of art from your colleagues without a huge monetary investment. Each artist would create mini-masterpieces, then swap them with their artsy friends.

I love this box size and shape. I love it so much that I have several around my studio, holding different things, and therein lies the problem: I spent more time trying to find the one with ATC sized cards than it actually takes to cut the paper to size.

Duetica to the rescue! I love all the Duetica Lettering Arts Studio fonts, some more than others. I set the letters A,T, and C, using DT-Mandolyn, DT-Piper and DT-Tin Whistle. I used the software features to get just the right letter styles I wanted. I then opened the files in Photoshop and added background colors.

Here are  the  instructions:

Duetica Lettering Arts Studio Software
White cardstock
Cigar box (approx. 6 ½” x 4 ¾” x 4 7/8”)
Assorted printed papers, three patterns (Graphic 45 Le Cirque Collection)
Tags (Graphic 45 Le Cirque Collection)
Adobe Photoshop or similar imaging software
Stazon Black ink
Stamps, 1”, Leaves All Over and Stripes.Dots.Hearts. (Ann Butler Faux Quilting Collection for Unity Stamps)
White Pen (*Uni-ball Signo Gel Pen )
Fiber, embroidery floss
Wheat Grass (optional)
Premium Extreme adhesive (Kool Tak)
Ribbon doilies zigzag strip (Basic Grey Paper Ribbon)

a. All paper edges were aged using a sponge and black ink.
b. All papers were adhered with Kool Tak Premium Extreme Adhesive.

1. Sand edges of box and remove any loose papers. Coat edges with Stazon Black Ink.
2. Measure and trim papers to cover all sides and inside lid of box.
3. Set type using Duetica Lettering Arts Studio.

Box Lid
• Stamp upper and lower edges of lid paper with black Stazon Ink.
• The ATC top is all one piece of paper with the words artist trading cards added in reverse type.
• Add complimentary paper strip1/4” larger top and bottom than your printed piece.
• Attach ATC type sheet to box lid.
• Adhere zig zag strip to bottom of lid.
• Attach fiber strip (box outside lid and just to the edge of the inner lid) to top with Premium Extreme adhesive.
• Tie embroidery floss around box lid and attach tags.
• Attach zigzag paper ribbon, wheat grass and/or additional embellishments

If you lid is a tight fit to begin with, use a knife to cut notches on either side where the floss and fiber wrap around the edge.

Box Sides
• Layer each letter on a scrap of the papers used on the box.
• Sponge edges and adhere to all sides.


Use the white pen to customize your letters.

This took me about an hour to create, but the time it saves hunting through my stash to find this box makes it worthwhile.

Now, go find someone to enjoy this wonderful Good Friday with (the someone can be yourself if you prefer)  and have a beautiful Easter!


Popular posts from this blog

Beautiful Butterfly

Vintage Photo Greeting Card