Updated date:

Basket Made From Recycled Christmas or Other Greeting Cards

Side of greeting card basket

Side of greeting card basket


Template for bottom and sides of basket

Template for bottom and sides of basket

©joaniebaby 07/01/2012

Memories from Family and Friends

Receiving cards for holidays, birthdays, weddings, in sickness, in sympathy, etc. brings loving thoughts from family and friends in time of joy and in time of need. If you are like me, throwing those cards in the trash seems thoughtless, but what else can you do? Small baskets made from the cards can be useful and decorative, to be used for gifts or by you.

Two years ago my husband had surgery and was in the hospital for two weeks, which is a long time these days. Anyway, he received many cards, and I finally decided to make a basket from some of them. This basket will be a great memory of the thoughtfulness of our family and friends.

There is no special skill needed to make the baskets. All you need are 14 greeting cards, templates, scissors, glue, yarn, regular sewing thread, a needle, cardboard and time. The template for the bottom of the basket is a hexagon, measuring 5½" from point to point. The template for the six sides of the basket measure 2¾" across the bottom, and 3½" across the two points at the top. Draw a curve from the two top points. The center of the curve is 5/8" from a line drawn between the two top points. These templates can be made from cardboard, or even from the back portion of one of the greeting cards.

Pieces paperclipped together

Shows lines and holes

Shows lines and holes

Pieces on Scotch tape holder


Side piece with holes punched


Choosing Cards

Look through your greeting card stash and choose 14 cards that will coordinate. If you don't have enough, choose seven cards that coordinate for the outside of the basket and seven cards that coordinate for the inside of the basket. Now center the template for the two bottoms on the front of cards that contain pictures large enough to fill the space and trace around them. Next trace the side template on 12 cards, centering the design.

Take two side pieces and paper clip them right sides together. Draw a line around the edges ¼" from the edge. The reason for putting two sides together is to make certain that the holes are in the same position on each side for when you sew them together. With a sharp needle, poke holes along this line and approximately ¼" apart. This is the difficult part of the project. To make it easier to poke the needle through, I placed the pieces over the center of a scotch tape holder (see picture). You might be able to come up with some other helpful idea. You could also use the tip of a very sharp scissors, or a small awl.

Sample of Blanket Stitch


Bottom with Blanket Stitch


Side pieces sewn to bottom


Christmas Memory Basket

Side of Christmas basket

Side of Christmas basket

Bottom of Christmas basket

Bottom of Christmas basket

Sewing Around Sides and Bottoms and Together

Once you have the holes punched into all of the side pieces and bottom pieces, you will now use the yarn to sew a blanket stitch around the edges of the sides and bottoms. (Check out the picture.) To do this place two side pieces together back to back, with pictures on the outside. If you are not familiar with making a blanket stitch, you can go to: http://www.holiday-crafts-and-creations.com/how-to-do-blanket-stitch.html. It really isn't difficult once you catch on.

Now that you have all sides and the bottom pieces stitched around the edges, you need to sew the pieces together. Use regular sewing thread in a color to match your yarn. Place the side pieces around the bottom in the order you want, and sew the side pieces to the bottom. Then sew the side pieces together.

That completes your basket! Use holiday cards to make a Christmas basket, birthday cards to make a birthday basket, get well cards, wedding cards, anniversary cards, etc. to make memory baskets. Let your imagination run wild. And have fun. This project can easily be completed in one day. The sewing can be finished while watching TV.

  • Crafting: Five Recycling Greeting Card Projects
    Before your toss your old greeting cards into the recycle bin, or store them in a drawer or box, give them a new life. Supplies: Gently-used greeting card Picture frame Needle-nose pliers To create wall art from an old greeting card:...

Memory baskets from recycled Christmas cards make lovely gifts for friends, or useful holders for objects in your own home. This is an addition to my original Hub on making baskets from recycled greeting cards. Have fun making these.


joaniebaby (author) on October 15, 2013:

Thank you so much Jaya. Just another fun way to occupy your time and do something good at the same time.

Sanghita Chatterjee from Kolkata on October 15, 2013:

This is just wonderful!! Thanks for sharing!

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on November 27, 2012:

I have so many greeting cards in boxes for the same reason: I can't bring myself to throw them away. This is a great idea! I love the little baskets you've created, and they'd be useful for all kinds of stray objects around the house. I hope to try my hand at this--thank you!

Stephanie Henkel from USA on September 19, 2012:

This looks like a great way to recycle those beautiful greeting cards that are too pretty to throw away! I'm thinking that it one of these baskets filled with some homemade goodies would make a great little gift basket. Voted up and pinned!

joaniebaby (author) on September 15, 2012:

Thanks au fait. They are fun to make and give you a feeling of contributing to society by recycling.

C E Clark from North Texas on September 14, 2012:

A great idea to make something useful and beautiful from all those greeting cards! Voted up, useful, and beautiful! Will share.

joaniebaby (author) on July 03, 2012:

Thanks ComfortB. I love to publish Hubs on activities that are useful and fun to do.

joaniebaby (author) on July 03, 2012:

Thanks for the comment sen.sush23. They are fun to make and can teach children how to recycle and make something useful.

Sushmita from Kolkata, India on July 03, 2012:

Joanie, this is a very easy and yet nice crafts for young children and adults. Like Comfort here, I too think it could do well to have the children make such a basket and organize their favorite cards, or stationary into one place. Voted up and useful.

Comfort Babatola from Bonaire, GA, USA on July 02, 2012:

Wow, I absolutely love this idea of recycling greeting cards! If it's made big enough to hold other greeting cards for keep.

Thanks for sharing. Voted Up and Useful.

Related Articles