This fancy fold card is a classic – and so easy to dress up or down.
With more interesting angles than regular A2 cards, step cards offer a bonanza of decorating possibilities. Here’s a soft, simple floral center step card oozing with pretty, vintage charm.
Center step cards are rich with decorating possibilities
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If you’re looking for something different, this is the fancy fold card for you. Unlike side step cards, which have limited surfaces for decorating, center step cards offer a wide center area with three narrow surrounding areas to play with. That middle surface is like a big, blank canvas begging for attention. This is the focal point, the star of the show. This is where you bust out the hand colored images. Or the extra texture. Or multiple layers.
And unlike side step cards, center step cards offer sufficient space for a message inside. So they’re really a nice combination of fancy step cards and utilitarian A2 cards. A rather “Do It All Debbie” kind of card. (10 points if you know which movie that came from.)
So let me show you how to make this uber useful card style, then I’ll give you the lowdown on how I decorated this pretty, feminine one.
How to make a center step card
OK, now for the actual steps in making this card.
- One 5 ½” x 11” piece of cardstock. This will be the card’s base.
- Paper trimmer
- Scoring board
- Bone folder
- Stamps and inks
- Copic markers
- Additional cardstock and patterned papers
- Oval dies, smooth and scallop edge
- Stick-on pearls
- Gelly Roll Pens
Position the cardstock in the paper trimmer so that the long edge is at the 1” mark. Place the cutting blade at the 1” mark and cut from 1” to 6.5”.
Turn the cardstock over and repeat on the other side.
Place the cardstock on the scoring tool. The corner of the cardstock where the cut was made at the 1” should be in the upper left corner. Now cut from the edge TO the cut line at the 1” mark, the 2” mark, and the 6.5” mark.
Flip the card and repeat the process.
Score between the cut lines at the 5 ½” mark. (This will be the center of the sheet of cardstock, as seen in the photo above.)
Fold the score lines as follows:
Mountain folds (crease pointing up): the 1st, 3rd and center score lines
Valley fold (crease pointing down): the second score line
Press all folds with the bone folder for crisper folds
Decorate as desired.
Vintage floral papers are always welcome on feminine cards
I designed these papers to look like the fabric that ladies used to wear back when women wore soft, cotton dresses during the day. Sprinkled with pretty flowers all over, these “sprigged” papers have unlimited potential in paper crafts. Between the five soft colors and three pattern sizes, you have 15 charming options to choose from. This card uses the medium print in rose pink and sage green.
You can find this pack of 15 papers in my Etsy shop, or you can use your own prints. Your card will look great no matter what! And if you’d like to see these papers “in action” on another card, check out this clean and simple feminine birthday card.
This vintage floral card turned into the Mother’s Day card for my own mother, but it’s suitable for any occasion, including birthdays, weddings and anniversaries. Anytime you need a pretty, feminine card, in fact.
Note: as I do most of the time, I used contrasting mats for all paper layers. This adds reinforcement to the sections, giving the card more stability and allowing for more “schtuff.”
The center panel is where all the action is. I colored the image, a lovely floral nosegay of lilies-of-the-valley with Copic alcohol markers. This image is from a stamp set that is no longer available; however, the supremely talented Marcella Hawley (the stamp’s original designer) offers a similar image in her “Spring Border Two” collection on her Power Poppy website. Marcella’s images are always romantic and sweet, and this collection is no exception.
There’s only a bare whisper of bling this time around. I used a gold Gelly Roll pen for the flower stamens and a single pearl on the bow. Sometimes less really IS more.
I used an oval die to cut the image and inked the edges in soft green. Then I placed it on a slightly larger scalloped oval layer for an added delicate feel. Kind of like the lace around a lady’s dress collar.
I kept the narrow sections simple with just a mat underneath the vintage floral designer paper.
I cut three small flags from coordinating cardstock scraps and stamped the sentiment on the lightest one after inking the edges. Then I layered those under the cream-colored seam binding bow and topped the center knot with a stick-on pearl.
The inside, and an oopsie
As I mentioned earlier, center step cards offer more real estate for a message than other fancy fold cards do. Plenty, in fact, as shown here. I matted the off-white layer with green cardstock and decorated it with the same image as I used on the front, after first stamping it off on scrap paper.
And here’s the boo boo: I made this card to showcase my designer paper, but not for any particular occasion. So I stamped this friendly greeting on the inside. And then Mother’s Day snuck up on me, and I needed a pretty card. Perfect, but that greeting wasn’t suitable for Mom. Luckily I managed to find a shaped punch to cover this greeting with another one more suitable. But the lesson was learned – don’t stamp greetings on “any occasion” cards until you actually USE the card. Eeek!
Add the center step card to your library of fancy fold cards
These cards are as fun to decorate as other fancy folds, but they offer plenty of messaging opportunities as well. They’re really the perfect blend of fun and function!
Now it’s your turn. Snap a photo or two of your next center step card and share with the G&B Facebook community, whether you use the Vintage Floral Digital Papers or not.
More examples of fancy fold cards
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