Postcards are a great way of getting artwork inexpensively. Instead of spending hundreds on an original or $20-$150 on a print, for a few dollars you can own a reproduction of your favorite artwork. Don’t have 4.5 million to spend on an original Monet, you can pick up a print or a postcard of one in the gift shop.
There are several fun things you can do with postcards too. Grab some postcards and spend some time with and/or for the ones you love. Here are some ideas.
Mail them to your Family and Friends.
Ok, I started with the obvious. This year I’m checking off a bucket list item: to recognize everyone’s birthday in our family. My mom had 10 kids and my mother-in-law had 11 kids. Between siblings, their spouses, their kids, their kids’ spouses and kids and a few step and former step children, I count 205 people.
To make it as easy as possible, I have written each person’s name and address on a postcard I chose for them, (I tried to make sure no one living under the same roof got the same postcard), then I wrote their birthday in the upper right corner—right where the stamp goes. Make sure it is small enough that the stamp will cover it. I then took all 205 postcards and organized them by month and day of the month. Then every Sunday, I pull out the cards for the next week and write a note to them on the back, put the stamp on and drop it off in the mail on my way to taking kids to school Monday morning.
If you want to do this, I happen to sell Postcards in my shop. Or if you just have a few people, you can sign up for the Birthday Club. For a small fee, I will mail out your postcard for you to your loved one. You get to choose the postcard and the note. And I’ll mail it out the Monday before their birthday.
Use them for artwork in Masterpiece (the board game)
This is a great game if you are taking an Art History class and need to quiz yourself in a fun way . Or use the game it to engage kids in art history. I’ve picked up postcards from artists during open studios and stuck them in our game and the kids love to use them even with the advertisements on them.
Make a Craft Stick Puzzle.
These are fairly easy to make. Line up the craft sticks (I like to use the jumbo size) then glue the postcard onto the flat edge of the craft sticks. When it is dry, use an exacto knife (kids, get adult help) or a pair of scissors to cut the craft sticks apart. Mix up the craft sticks and let your little ones put the puzzle together. If that sounds like a lot of work for you or too easy of a puzzle and you still want a puzzle, there are lots of artists that offer puzzles of their work including me. You can get my jigsaw puzzles here.
Make a jigsaw puzzle.
If you just want a 5 or 6 piece puzzle, you can convert a postcard into a jigsaw puzzle. Simply turn the postcard over and draw a jigsaw design on the back then cut it out. Mix them up and try to put it back together again. You can store it in a zip-lock bag or a plastic pencil box from the dollar store. To make it a little harder, make several puzzles from different postcards and store them all in one plastic pencil box. You not only have to put the puzzle together, but you have to separate out which piece goes to which puzzle.
Make a wooden block puzzle.
While we are on the subject of puzzles, if you find 6 different postcards to use, you can make them into a wooden block puzzle. Buy 2 inch blocks (I found some on Amazon HERE) You’ll need to cut them precisely and modge podge them onto 6 wooden blocks. Start with one image, modge podge all the pieces onto one side of each of the 6 blocks, when it is dry, turn all the pieces to the next side and repeat until all of the images have been used. You’ll have 6 puzzles in one!
Hang them as decor
Maybe the price of the print is too much. Or maybe you don’t have a lot of wall space left, but you love the artwork. Grab a frame that will fit the postcard (all of my postcards are 4x6 inches), place it in the frame and hang the art on your wall. I found this frame at a local Goodwill store. :)
Use them as gift cards.
Have you ever bought the gift and forgotten the birthday card to go with it? Grab a postcard, write the well wishes on the back and then either slip it between the ribbon and the paper, or punch a hole in the corner and attach it to the bag with some extra ribbon, or tape it directly on to the wrapping paper (works great if you aren’t into ribbon or forgot to pick that up too.) Bonus points if you keep 4x6 envelopes around to tuck them into.
Use as a prop in an escape room.
Escape rooms are all about solving puzzles. Write or draw a clue on the back of a postcard then cut the postcard in half with a jagged line and hide both inside the escape room—in different places of course.
Use them to randomly assign groups or partners at a party or event.
Decide how many people you need in each group and how many groups you want. Cut each postcard into the same number of pieces as how many people you want in each group. (Make sure you use a different postcard for each group) Put all the pieces into a bag and have each person pull out a piece and go in search of the other member(s) of their group. You get a fun mingle, an easy way to divide people up, and an instant momento of the event (their postcard piece). If you want to make it easier or fancier, cut the postcards in jigsaw shapes.
If any of these ideas sparked an interest in you and you suddenly find yourself in need of some fun postcards, I’ve got you covered. You can find them in my shop. See you there!