Artsy Things Artist Trading Card Swap

Published on January 24th, 2017 | by Julie Finn


Join the Valentine’s Day Artist Trading Card Swap with Mark Montano

Artist Trading Card Swap

Looking for a little more love in your life? Then check out this love-themed artist trading card swap, run by Mark Montano of Big-Ass Craft Book fame (although I recognize him more from Make Your Mark on PBS, because I’m a nerd).

The ATC swap is sponsored by Deco Art, so you’re encouraged to use a Deco Art product on your artist trading card, but the rest is up to you, and my absolute favorite thing about artist trading cards is how accessible they are to upcycling. Ephemera of all kinds are welcome on artist trading cards, from beer labels to cut-outs from magazines to fabric scraps to corrugated cardboard. Because artist trading cards are collectible pieces of artwork, you can rest comfortably assured that the bits that you upcycle will be kept and treasured–I have an album with trading card-sized pockets that I keep all of my collected ATCs in!

If you’re looking for some ideas for embellishing your artist trading cards, here are some of my own favorite methods:

fabric-embellishedEven if you love to sew, you might forget that you can use fabric on your ATCs. It makes a lovely embellishment, whether sewn, glued, or taped.

Paint the edgesThe tute uses this technique to personalize business cards, but I think it works well as a finishing touch on ATCs, as well.

Sew on themYou CAN stitch onto cardstock and even cardboard. Use a sharp needle, and don’t forget to replace it before you sew again on fabric.

Use playing cardsYou need a sturdy base for your artist trading card. I like to cut down a playing card to the correct size, and then use decoupage and alcohol ink to embellish it.

wood block printingDid you know? You can make woodblock prints with vintage children’s alphabet blocks!

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About the Author

I’m a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I’m interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it’s manifested–making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now.

Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life; my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties; and my for links to articles about poverty, educational politics, and this famous cat who lives in my neighborhood.

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