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Easel Cards!

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Projects by Sharon M. Reinhart

Easel cards are very popular and provide a beautiful way to display cards. They are easier to make than you might think. In case you are not familiar with this style of card, they are cards that lay flat for insertion into the envelope; however, once removed from the envelope a portion of the card folds out to create an easel effect.

As is the case with most card techniques, there is more than one way to make an easel card, resulting in a variety of effects. This style of card can be made in standard card sizes and shapes, and with portrait or landscape orientations. There is also the option of creating shaped easel cards such as circles and other symmetrical shapes.

One of the bonuses of making easel cards is that you probably already have everything you need within your own card-making supplies. One exception to this may be if you choose to use a die template to create an easel card. Yes! There are even die templates for this.

Project 1 was created with one of these die templates. The Framelits Regal Stand-Ups™ die template by designer Stephanie Barnard and Sizzix was used for this card.

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Project 1

The finished card size is 4 3/8 x 5 1/2 inches and is created with one pass through your die-cutting system -- the Big Shot was used here. All that is needed then is to fold on the score lines and add the layers and embellishments. A very important part of an easel card is the anchor spot, where the edge of the card rests. This element is also created while die-cutting: A small notch in the center inside of the card is produced. The flower embellishments on this card were created with a different template, the Flourish Thinlet dies from Stampin' Up.

If you don't have access to this template and wish to re-create a similar effect by hand it is possible. Start with a 4 3/8 x 8 3/4-inch piece of cardstock; score and fold it in half. Next, score the top layer at 2 1/4 inches from the cut edge. Fold this into a mountain fold and use a punched or die-cut shape as the anchor spot.

The easiest way to create the center effect is to punch or die-cut a desired shape and adhere it to the mountain fold; then layer papers and embellish as desired. Another way is to die-cut on the fold to create the same effect, which is an entire other article that we may visit in the future.

Project 2 is a 5-inch square easel card. This same method can be used to create any size of card. We begin this card with a 5 x 10-inch piece of cardstock that is scored at 2 1/2 and 5 inches and then folded in half. This one is slightly different in that the fold at the 2 1/2-inch mark is folded to create a valley fold (aligning the cut edge with the top folded edge of the card). It's similar to a Z-fold effect. Next, a 5-inch square of cardstock is adhered to this folded panel by applying adhesive to the top portion only of the 5-inch panel, aligning the cut edges.

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Project 2

The last thing that is needed to create the easel card is the ever-so-important anchor spot for the card to rest. This can be as simple as a punched circle, piece of ribbon, a decorative strip of cardstock or, as used here, a stamped and layered sentiment. Some people choose to add foam mounting tape to raise the anchor spot; however, my preference is to use two to three layers glued together to give it a bit more height but not interfere with the card thickness. To finish this card, decorate as desired by adding layers and embellishments to the card front.

A variation of this card is one called a twisted easel. This involves scoring the front card panel diagonally to create the easel effect.

Our last card, Project 3, is another great example of the variations that may be created. This one is a side easel card. That being said, it would be equally as nice with the easel panel in the center.

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Project 3

The card base here is simply a 4 1/4 x 5 1/2-inch piece of cardstock. The easel element begins with a 3 1/4 x 4 1/2-inch piece of cardstock that is scored and folded at 2 and 4 inches, creating a 1/2-inch tab and two 2-inch panels. The 1/2-inch tab is then adhered over the top edge of a 4 x 5 1/4-inch piece of cardstock at the left or right side, or even the center if desired. This entire panel is then adhered to the card base with the easel element resting on the card in a mountain-fold orientation.

To continue with the easel element, cut a 3 1/4 x 4 1/2-inch piece of cardstock and adhere on the front of the mountain fold with adhesive on the bottom portion only. All that is needed now is an anchor spot. For this card, three layers of a decorative die-cut strip have been adhered together and then layered to a red cardstock strip and then the card base. The rest is up to you to embellish and decorate as desired.

In honor of the Fourth of July, I have chosen to use a red, white and blue color palette. Keep in mind that this style of card can be created in any color palette and used for any occasion.

Easel cards are also great accent pieces for party decor. For your next dinner party, create an easel card to beautifully display your menu. Or for wedding table decor, add photos of the happy couple and use as part of the centerpieces.

As you can see there are many variations and options. I encourage you to start with some of these examples. Once you have totally fallen in love with this style of card I am sure you will experiment and research other variations. I hope you have been inspired to create!

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