How To Make Cards | Basic Card Folds for Beginners - Make Beautiful Cards | Card Making Made Easy with Andrea Walford

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How To Make Cards | Basic Card Folds for Beginners

In this post about basic card folds, I am going to show you how to cut and fold your cardstock in order to create a variety of common handmade greeting card styles.
Basic Card Folds For Beginners

Once you have gathered together your essential card making supplies, the next step is to cut and fold your cardstock into cards. Now there are a number of different styles of handmade cards that you can create from a standard sheet of cardstock (letter and A4). All you have to do is change the way you cut and fold your cardstock and the way you orient your card.

As this post is about basic card folds – I’m going to introduce you two the two main card fold styles. A portrait fold card and a landscape fold card.

Another thing that I want to note is that I will be using a standard North American letter-size sheet of cardstock, which is 8 ½” x 11.”  If you are working with A4 cardstock – the principle is the same, just the dimensions are different.

Basic Card Folds | Portrait Fold Card

Basic Card Folds - Portrait Folds | Make Beautiful Cards | Andrea Walford

The first type of basic card fold is called a portrait fold. It’s where the height of the card is greater than the width of the card.

There are two ways that you can create a portrait fold card.

Cut Along the Long Edge

The first way to make a portrait fold card is to cut your cardstock sheet in half along the long edge of the cardstock (see picture above on the left).

So cut a letter-size sheet of cardstock (8 ½” x 11″) in half at 5 ½.” This will give you two pieces of cardstock that are 5 ½” x 8 ½.” Score and fold each of these pieces in half. This will give you two cards that each measure 4 ¼” x 5 ½.” Cards folded in this way are often referred to as side-fold cards.

Cut Along the Short Edge

The second way to make a portrait fold card is to cut your cardstock sheet in half along the short edge of the cardstock (see picture above on the right).

So cut an 8 ½” x 11″ sheet of cardstock in half at 4 ¼.” This will give you two pieces of cardstock that are 4 ¼” x 11.” Score and fold each of these pieces in half.  This will give you two cards that each measure 4 ¼” x 5 ½.”  Cards folded in this way are often referred to as top-fold cards.

Basic Card Folds | Landscape Fold Card

Basic Card Folds | Landscape Fold Card | Make Beautiful Cards | Andrea Walford

The second type of basic card fold is called a landscape fold. It’s where the width of the card is greater than the height of the card.

There are two ways that you can create a landscape fold card.

Cut Along the Long Edge

The first way to make a landscape fold card is to cut your cardstock sheet in half along the long edge of the cardstock (see picture above on the left).

So cut a letter-size sheet of cardstock (8 ½” x 11″) in half at 5 ½.” This will give you two pieces of cardstock that are 5 ½” x 8 ½.” Score and fold each of these pieces in half. This will give you two cards that each measure 5 ½” x 4 ¼.” Cards folded in this way are often referred to as top-fold cards.

Cut Along the Short Edge

The second way to make a portrait fold card is to cut your cardstock sheet in half along the short edge of the cardstock (see picture above on the right).

So cut an 8 ½” x 11″ sheet of cardstock in half at 4 ¼.” This will give you two pieces of cardstock that are 4 ¼” x 11.” Score and fold each of these pieces in half.  This will give you two cards that each measure 5 ½” x 4 ¼.” Cards folded in this way are often referred to as side-fold cards.

Did You Notice Anything?

Compare the pictures, the card measurements, and the cutting instructions above. Did you notice anything? For both the landscape and portrait card fold options, you are cutting the cardstock in the exact same ways.

When you cut an 8 ½” x 11″  sheet of cardstock in half along the long edge (to get two 5 ½” x 8 ½”  pieces of cardstock) you end up with either a side fold portrait card OR a top fold landscape card.

When you cut your 8 ½” x 11″ sheet of cardstock in half along the long edge (to get two 4 ¼” x 11″ pieces of cardstock) you end up with either a top fold portrait card OR a side fold landscape card.

Which Of These Is The Best Way to Cut and Fold Your Cards?

At this point, you may be wondering which is the best way to cut and fold your cards.

The answer is that it is totally a matter of personal preference.

When I first started card making, I always created side-fold portrait cards and top fold landscape cards.

About 5 years ago I switched to top fold portrait cards and side fold landscape cards. I think the reason I switched is that these fold orientations tend to be less commonly chosen. To me, this just makes them all the more elegant.

So there you have it friends. Basic card folds for beginners. In upcoming posts, I’ll introduce you to a variety of other fun and unique ways to fold your cards.

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Welcome

Hey there! Welcome to my blog! My name is Andrea Walford. I’m an artist and maker, mom of 5, caregiver to my 99 1/2 year old grandpa and a proud 1/2 Mexican 1/2 Hungarian “woman of color.” 

As a self-taught artist I have a passion for helping others discover and develop their creative confidence. And I have found that card making is a great way to do this.

When you make a card, your “canvas” is small. Yet it has so much creative potential. 

So if you want to learn how to make beautiful cards while developing your creative confidence – you’ve come to the right place!

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