My husband's parents host Thanksgiving at their house every year. As families grow, it seems that people get more spread out and disconnected. In an effort to increase attendance this year, I suggested written invitations instead of phone calls.
I wanted to make sure that I allowed enough time to get these made and mailed, but I didn't realize I had started quite so early. The good news, though, is that you will have plenty of time to make some, too. Mine are for Thanksgiving, but these could easily work for Halloween, and if you got a different stencil and themed stamps, you could use them for any occasion.
You will need a leaf to make a pattern for your invitation shape. I also used: leaf and pumpkin stamps, a fall colored stamp pad, and white and colored paper. I used rubber cement to stick the layers together.
A word about rubber cement: it's great, because it doesn't wrinkle the paper. It's not great, because it doesn't hold up in heat. If you're making these in the summer, or mailing them to the tropics, you may want to use a glue stick.
Start by scanning your leaf. I then pasted mine into a word processing program so that I could control the size. Size is important here, because if you make the invitations too big, they won't fit in your envelopes. My envelopes are about a half of a sheet of paper, but my leaf was bigger, so I shrank it on the computer. Print a copy of your leaf template. I also used the word processor to type up the text for the invitations.
Now, for the stamping. I did this once, and it was too dark to read the text over the stamping, so here is my "new and improved" version.
Ink your stamp and then press it once onto another sheet of paper. I used a tissue. Then stamp on the copy paper you are trying to decorate. I was able to get 2-4 images each time I inked the stamp.
This picture is actually the darker version of my stamped background. You will want yours to be a bit lighter, so that your text will show up.
After you stamp your background page, print your invitation text onto the paper. Make sure you know how the paper feeds into your printer! I had to put my paper in upside down to get the writing on top of the stamps.
Now, cut out the leaf template you made, and lay it over the text of your invite. My leaf was actually a bit too small, so I free-handed part of the outline to include all the words. Once you cut it out, no one will ever know.
After you cut out your shape, place your leaf on a solid color piece of paper. Cardstock would work quite nicely here, but I only had regular paper, so there you go. I attached my leaf cut out with rubber cement, but a glue stick or photo splits would do quite nicely.
After you attach the cut-out to your solid color paper, free-hand cut about 1/4 in. around the patterned paper so that you just have a solid outline.
I then chose to use a cute little pumpkin stamp in orange. I stamped three of them, and cut them out of the white paper. Then, I used rubber cement to attach them to a piece of green background paper, and I cut that out wih a 1/4 in. border. I used more rubber cement to stick the pumpkins to the leaf.
And here you are!
Bonus: I pictured the recipients of these putting them on their refrigerators, and I remembered a "save the date" magnet that we received from someone once. I used a promotional magnet we got in the mail and made the invitation into a magnet. I just cut the magnet into little rectangles and used photo splits to attach.
I will use the little pumpkin to decorate the envelopes, too. What shape or theme will you use for invites? Leave a comment and tell us about them.