Monday, February 17, 2014

Tools- Playing Card Stencils

It is a sad reality that money doesn't grow on trees.  So no amount of wishing I had unlimited funds for art supplies will make it so.  I certainly have a wonderful collection of materials, not to mention a wonderful husband who finds my creating valuable, but there will always be that something-I-don't-have out there on the horizon.

There is something satisfying, though, about making your own materials.  I have tried a number of techniques and enjoy experimenting on my own as well.  One tool that is both inexpensive and easy to make is a playing card stencil set.  I have a number of store bought stencils, but I love having a personalized set with images that are meaningful to me personally.

Playing Card Stencils Materials List:

  • Plastic coated playing cards- All playing cards are not created equal.  Newer ones, and ones with pop culture images on them, are often made with thinner cardstock.  Use older decks with missing cards that you have lying around your home, or ask around.  You probably have friends and family that would be more than happy to donate to the cause.
  • Sharp craft knife
  • Self healing cutting mat (or even paperboard from part of a cereal box will do in a pinch)
  • Sharpie or other permanent ink felt pen
  • Ideas for designs


  • You may want to design an idea on a piece of paper first, but once you're ready to go, draw your design directly on the playing card.  The cards are sturdy enough to support a relatively intricate design, so play around and use your imagination.
  • Carefully cut out the design (keep the cut-outs!) with the craft knife
  • Use your stencil with paint, spray ink, or pens and markers

Do not throw away the scraps!  They can be used to create a resist on an art journal page for a different effect.  I have a little collection pile of all of my cut pieces and love to mix them up and spray over them with inks.

Simple, right?  The possibilities are endless.  
Enjoy your creating!