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Crafts - with a Vintage Flair

Get your scissors and glue ready! Each of the crafts below has a list of materials and tools, and step-by-step illustrated instructions. First on the list of materials is a link for a free vintage image. Click on that link and you will be able to download the image in a PDF format, sized and ready to print. You'll need the free Adobe Reader on your computer:

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We are lucky to have a great Joann Fabric and Craft Store where we live, so supplies and tools are easy to come by.  If you need anything for your crafts, Joann.com is online with fast delivery, and only a click away.

Browse all of our crafts on this page, or go directly to our Holiday pages: Halloween Crafts | Christmas Crafts |Patriotic Crafts | Valentine Crafts | Easter Crafts | St. Patrick's Day Crafts | Thanksgiving Crafts

For the Holidays

Paper Mache Egg on Vintage Image Craft
Nothing says Easter like a traditional Paper Mache Egg, decorated with charming Victorian images! There are really hard ways to make these - but this is by far the easiest and fool-proof. With an antiqued painted finish and a parade of vintage bunny images, this makes a perfect decoration. Even better with candy inside.
St Patricks Brooch on Vintage Image Craft
Pin this St. Patrick's Brooch to your jacket, and prepare to be kissed. Easy enough for children, you can make a batch of these before the corned beef comes to a boil. The ribbon rosette of green and gold is simply skewered on a brad. The shamrock image and glitter are both affixed with double-sided adhesive paper. A lucky charm for St. Patrick's Day!
Valentine Hankie Doll from Vintage Image Craft
A Valentine Hankie Doll can be an elegant way to display a vintage handerchief. This fashionable woman is dressed in a folded hankie gown. The large glittered heart  and satin ribbons make her a vintage ornament, perfect for a Valentine's Day display! This was our "inspiration piece" for the VIC "Valentine Ornament" Creative Challenge for February 2012.
Tea Bag Ornament photo on Vintage Image Craft
This dangling snowflake Tea Bag Ornament is a variation on the classic folded paper craft from Holland. In the center  is the cutest Victorian cat image, but you might substitute a photo of your sweetheart or your children! We designed this as our 2011 inspiration piece for our "Christmas Cats" Creative Challenge.
Easter Painting craft by Vintage Image Craft
Compose an Easter Painting that has the look and feel of a treasured Old Master. You begin with a white artist's canvas and layer paint, an Easter vintage image, crackle varnish, and brown glaze. Just what the Easter Bunny would paint when he tires of eggs. A picture-perfect Easter keepsake!
St Patricks Puzzle Blocks from Vintage Image Craft
St Patrick's Puzzle Blocks are a versatile decoration. And you can rearrange them to create six different vintage scenes of Victorian Ireland! With a simple decoupage technique, you transform plain 2" wooden blocks into a very Irish keepsake - or actually, six of them!
Valentine Bag craft from Vintage Image Craft
Fill your vintage Valentine Bag with goodies for your sweetie. It will be a delight before and after the gift is revealed. A simple brown paper lunch bag is transformed with a paper tole technique, and paper eyelet lace you make with scissors and a hole punch! A vintage "key" gift tag graphic is included.
Flower Pin craft photo It's Spring! A Flower Pin on your lapel will make you the belle of the Easter Parade! These frilly, colorful pins are based on Victorian "flower faces" on vintage greeting cards. The glass marble in the center makes them pop like eye-catching 3-D!
Shamrock charms craft photo Shamrock Charms on a bracelet of leprechaun's gold! They look like hand-painted porcelain, but they are really magical "shrink plastic." We give you the templates and the vintage St. Patrick's Day clip art - you just print, cut and bake!
New Year coaster craft photo New Year Coasters that will add vintage to your vintage champagne! New for 2010 and exclusive to VintageImageCraft, these look-like-a-million-bucks coasters are just bargain-bin marble tiles with a New Year vintage image clip-art embedded on the surface.
Christmas window decoration craft photo Hand-painted stained glass - the easy way. This Christmas Window Decoration starts with an old window frame, and you apply vintage images, liquid leading, and glass glitter. We give you eight FREE templates and images - and the premier supplier of glass glitter!
Thanksgiving place card craft Thanksgiving place cards will make your holiday table "pop" with vintage charm. All you need are the FREE images and templates, a craft knife, a ruler, a bone folder, and a few minutes.
Black cat figure craft photo Meow!! A Black Cat Figure arches his back by the light of a full Halloween moon in this delightful stand-up scene. You can make it without a magic spell - just some black foamcore board and these enchanted vintage images.
Halloween Candy Bowl craft This "fishy" Halloween Candy Bowl began as a common fish bowl. The shimmery autumn effect comes from crepe paper, decoupaged on the inside of the glass, along with a classic vintage Jack O'Lantern surrounded by smiling children.
Independence Day Decoration craft photo Your Independence Day Decoration will fly like a skyrocket! Victorian fireworks were works of art in themselves, and we've created this colorful reproduction to add a burst of surprise over your 4th of July table. Even kids can make this easy vintage craft.
After-shave Bottle craft photo Say Happy Father's Day with this vintage After-Shave Bottle filled with home-brewed after-shave! The label looks like it belongs in an 1890's apothecary, and the bottle is embellished with the end of a necktie and a large button. We provide two easy after-shave recipes!
Uncle Sam Figure craft photo Our classic Uncle Sam Figure stands proudly for Independence Day! Just like the stand-up figures you see in stores for a pretty penny, you can make your own from simple materials - and the vintage image and stand template we provide.
Independence Day Wreath craft Craft an Independence Day Wreath that sings America's praises. Embellish a simple grapevine wreath with music scrolls of vintage patriotic songs, folded stars and tinsel treble clefs. The bow even has a gold "Liberty Bell" to ring out the message.
Teacup pincushion craft photo Mom will love this vintage Teacup Pincushion, with the little gold embroidery scissors hung on decorative cord. This gift goes together in a flash with some fabric and decorative braid! And, you can make the matching Mother's Day card to really get on her good side.
Easter Bunny Basket craft photo Our Easter Bunny Basket is a simple - but elegant - paper craft. The basket is an origami-style box. On both sides, a vintage image Easter Bunny guards his treasure and his ears loop up to form the basket handles.
Easter egg pot craft photo A vintage Easter Egg Pot is the perfect centerpiece for your Easter brunch. The neo-classic design is highlighted with gold leaf and decorated with simple hand-painted pussy willows. The theme is reflected in the vintage images of little girls with sprays of pussy willows!
Easter decoration craft photo Our Easter decoration is a VintageImageCraft exclusive. A paper machè covered balloon become a Victorian chocolate confection for your door with brown paint, clay flowers and bathtub caulk icing! Good enough to eat with the FREE 1908 vintage image.
St Patrick's Pin and Pendant craft Craft a St. Patrick's Pin or Pendant in shamrock green and leprechaun gold! The magic is in the polymer clay, metallic pigment powder and iron transfer sheets. And the Irish vintage images are magically delicious!
St Patricks Decoration craft photo A St. Patrick's Day Decoration on your front door will give a warm Irish welcome with a vintage look. It will also give you something clever to make with those empty heart-shaped candy boxes left over from Valentine's Day!
New Year noisemaker craft photo This New Year Noisemaker is a "can do" craft, because it starts with a recycled soda can on a stick. With the authentic vintage New Year image, the yarn pom pom topper and Victorian fringe, it would fit right in for New Year's Eve, 1901!
Instant Christmas place cards craft photo We call these "Instant" Christmas Place Cards because you can make them in an instant. Most of what you need is in the FREE PDF template you download and print on self-adhesive labels. The rest is just paper, scissors and a pen.
Vintage Christmas Ornament craft photo Our Vintage Christmas Ornament would have been at home on a proper Victorian Christmas tree. Now, with a few simple materials, you can festoon your own tree in vintage style. Even kids can make these little charmers.
Vintage Christmas card craft photo Make your own Vintage Christmas Cards with blank panel cards and envelopes! We found this unique 1913 Santa illustration by Samuel L. Schmucker among the family collection, and it became our 2008 Christmas card. Download this vintage image for FREE.
Christmas chenille doll craft photo Cute Christmas Chenille Dolls can adorn your tree, your packages, your hat, or anywhere.  Just like the Victorian originals they are based on, these simple decorations combine bump chenille rods, paper, glitter and glue into delightful holiday characters.
Christmas napkin ring craft photo Christmas Napkin Rings are a merry variation on our Thanksgiving craft. With paper, scissors and glue, you can create four different designs for your holiday table - as quick as Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Dopey, Sleepy, uh, Doc...
Thanksgiving tie craft photo Here is a Thanksgiving Tie that tells the whole story in vintage images. From "doing well" to "well-done," here is the evolution of the Thanksgiving turkey for the turkery-carver in your family.
Thanksgiving quilt craft photo This Thanksgiving Quilt decoration has all the padded charm of a primitive quilt - but almost none of the sewing. At the center is a vintage image of a charming Victorian Pilgrim, printed on fabric. And around him - a simple cross stitch design!
Accent blocks photo Thanksgiving Napkin Rings are probably the easiest, and classiest craft we have come up with so far. Paper, scissors, and glue are the prime ingredients, plus one of the classic vintage images we provide - a proud turkey or a thankful child at the Thanksgiving table.
Halloween tree craft photo A great Halloween Tree starts with an ugly, twisted and very dead branch. Then it gets "potted" in a hand-cast plaster base that will be a family heirloom - if yours is anything like the Addams family.  We throw in some cute Halloween Pumpkin Lollipop images.
Halloween witch ornament craft photo Make a Halloween Witch Ornament that combines the Victorian sensibilities of vivid imagery and fanciful ornamentation. This simple ornament has a few "secret" ingredients that will make you a wizard of ornament crafting.
Halloween clown ornament craft photo Hang a Halloween Clown Ornament with all the trimmings of a old-time Halloween parade. Cute to beat the band, this craft is simple enough for children and classy enough to hang on your front door.
Halloween pumpkin ornament craft photo Here's a Halloween Pumpkin Ornament with a surprise - a black cat popping out of a Jack o'Lantern.  The other surprise is how easy it is to make.  Just four ingredients and you have an instant antique.
Halloween chenille figure photo A jaunty Halloween Chenille Figure makes a great ornament for your Halloween tree, table decoration, or lapel pin.  Choose the black cat or the Jack O'Lantern, and make them for your friends!
Halloween treat basket photo Our Halloween Treat Basket is a personal-size, trick-or-treat party essential. The technique is Victorian paper-weaving with an aged paper treatment that begins with a single brown paper bag.  Fringed with black crepe paper, this is a design reminiscent of the 1890s.
Halloween luminary craft photo This Halloween Luminary is incredibly easy to make with a few materials, but the results are spectacular. Vintage Halloween images by Ellen H. Clapsaddle flicker and dance with a single votive candle.
Patriotic chenille doll craft photo These Patriotic Chenille Dolls will spark up your 4th of July!  Just a few simple supplies, scissors and glue, and you will have these vintage-look charmers to help you celebrate - or dress up your barbecue centerpiece.
4th of July door decoration craft 4th of July Door Decoration is super-easy.  Start with a wire coat hanger.  Twist on strips of red, white and blue crepe paper.  Add some simple, glittery embellishments and a patriotic vintage image and you have a jazzy tribute to the Land of Liberty.
Craft photo Crackers for all occasions.  These festive candy-filled tubes are an English tradition.  This is a simple paper project, suitable for children or crafting parties.  
Accent blocks photo Antique Blocks are vintage treasures, gilded with an aged, cracked varnish finish.  No one needs to know that they were once common milk cartons.  We'll show you how to make them from the simplest materials and ingredients.
Valentine Clock craft photo Our Valentine Clock has angelic maribou wings that say the heart, as well as time, flies. Begin with a recycled heart-shaped candy box and add our exclusive vintage image clock face. This is the perfect Valentine gift when another box of candy isn't enough.
Kissing Dangle photo Kissing Dangles for Valentine's Day.  The old legend says, "If you kiss under a dangle, your hearts will entangle."  Okay, we made that up.  This is basically paper, string and some beads, but it looks quaint and romantic.
Heart Basket photo Heart Basket is traditional Danish paper weaving, with a twist.  This small basket is woven of silver and gold metallic paper, with a special lacing of red satin ribbon. This is a great "door knob" gift from the office Valentine fairy.
Santa Plate photo Santa's Cookie Plate will be a Christmas Eve tradition. This plate combines reverse-glass painting and decoupage.  We've even provided several Santa images for you to choose from.
Candle photo Christmas Candle resting in a fluffy bed of white whipped-wax "snow"!  We give you six different images for this easy, glowing project.
Tag ornament photo Tag Ornaments are dainty and sparkling, and the glass marbles magically magnify the vintage images of children.  Who would know they started out as common cardboard key tags?

Home Decoration

Fabric box craft photo We call this fabric box craft our Asian Treasure Box, because its silky padded lid is an antique Japanese print - and you'll treasure it.  This is one of those wonderful crafts that looks really hard but really isn't. An empty cardboard cigar box, fabric and glue is practically all you need!
Vintage cake pan photo A Vintage Cake Pan is the way to deliver your next baked treat to a friend or party.  The vintage illustration is a gift in itself, with your recipe printed on the back. This craft has two variations, four free images, and two great lemon dessert recipes.
Vintage suncatcher photo This Vintage Suncatcher is a translucent treasure with an Arts & Crafts look.  Equally stunning hanging in a window or displayed on a stand, you can make it with plain window glass, copper foil tape, and some simple reverse-glass painting.
Pet treat jar photo Pet Treat Jar. Grab one of those glass canisters you always find at yard sales and make this charming kitchen accessory.  You'll learn how to hand-paint lettering on glass, the easy way.
Letter Box photo Lacy Love Letter Box will keep your treasured mementos safe.  This project is an interesting combination of decoupage and antiquing.  
Coaster photo Coasters from old CDs!  We admit it - we love recycled crafting.  And who doesn't have some old CDs around the house?  Copper foil tape gives these an old-world look.
Magnet photo Bottle Cap Magnets.  These have to be our favorites so far.  They are as pretty as a picture, with a charming retro look.  They can be magnets or push pins.  Or you might think of something else entirely!
Switchplate photo Switchplate decoupage is a wonderful project for people who are "turned on" by cats!  We give you two variations to try - and three wonderful vintage cat images.  
Flower pot photo "Flower Faces" Flower Pot combines decoupage and decorative painting to glorify the common clay pot. There are two variations to choose from, and over 20 FREE vintage images to use.

Card Making

Ten Vintage Valentine Greetings to Make e-book photo "Ten Vintage Valentine Greetings to Make" has 41 pages of ready-to-print images, complete card-making instructions, and helpful tips. This e-book has silhouettes, window cards, pop ups, tunnel cards, and special embellishments. Vintage-look handmade cards from the whimsical to the mushily sentimental.
Christmas Card book cover "Ten Vintage Christmas Greetings to Make" is a 40-page e-book with ready-to-print vintage images, complete instructions and card-making tips! Pop ups, window cards, textured collages, ornament cards, hot glue craft, and many more techniques! This is a card-making book that will keep giving for years to come!
Halloween card book photo "Ten Vintage Halloween Greetings to Make" is a 34-page e-book with ready-to-print vintage images, complete instructions and card-making tips! This is a must-have handbook for handmade Halloween cards that deliver a vintage punch. Pop ups, window cards, shakers, paper tole, vellum overlays and many more techniques!
Headless Photo Card for Halloween, from Vintage Image Craft
Our creepy Headless Photo Card has the look of an antique photographic cabinet card -- minus a head or two. To mimic the traditional leatherette frame, we show you how to get the look with cardboard, wax paper, ink and your iron. You get your choice of TWO vintage photos and Halloween messages.
Queen of Hearts Valentine card
The Queen of Hearts Valentine Card features an oversize playing card as backdrop to a playful paper doll. She has a medieval crown, Victorian puff sleeves, and a clown's bloomers. Across her heart-shaped skirt is the 18th Century nursery rhyme, "The Queen of Hearts, she baked some tarts..." Easy paper-crafting fun!
Vintage Tag Christmas Card photo
Wish your friends "Scrappy Holidays" with this Vintage Tag Christmas Card. The tag displays an 1890s Santa Claus "scrap." The FREE templates includ the card and the shop tags, ready to print and craft! This was our 2010 Christmas card, and they couldn't be easier.
Easter Egg Card photo Victorians would have loved our exclusive Easter Egg Card. It has moving parts! Everything you need is right here - three vivid vintage images and complete instructions. Crack open the egg for a "cheep" thrill!
Christmas Stamp Card photo Our Christmas Stamp Card is as easy as they come. This was our personal 2009 card design, and we made 90 of them. You can make two from a single piece of cardstock. Just the basic paint, glitter and glue, and you have a "Special Delivery" for Christmas!
Mother's Day Card craft photo This Mother's Day card has all of the sentimentality of a true Victorian greeting. The 1921 vintage image shows a mother cradling her baby, while the soft fabric border reflects its Victorian inspiration. It is the perfect companion to our Teacup Pincushion!
Handmade vintage Christmas card photo Craft a Vintage Christmas Card in a twinkling! Standard blank panel cards and envelopes are transformed into your personal holiday greetings with a vintage image and double stick tape. A rich look at a bargain price.
3-D Halloween card craft photo Make your own 3-D Halloween Card using a simplified paper tole technique. Paper tole is the art of constructing three-dimensional pictures by cutting and layering elements from identical images. Ours uses only two layers, but the effect is magical.
Halloween pop up card photo Our Halloween Pop Up Card is a simple version of the intricate Victorian pop up cards of yore. Like its Victorian cousins, this card uses cut out "scraps" from several cards to create a lively 3-D scene of a flying witch heading for the moon.
Handmade Padded Pumpkin card photo This Padded Pumpkin Card mixes paper craft with no-sew fabric quilting, for a soft-to-the-touch three-dimensional effect. We love how the inside pumpkin bulges through the cut-out window on the cover.
Heart Popup Card photo Leaping Hearts Pop-up Card is a great, simple card craft that delivers a surprise.

Why do you love crafts or scrapbooking?

For us, it is the joy of creating something new out of the old. Putting things together in a new way. Transforming common or plain materials into something decorative, whimsical or beautiful. Creating objects, with love and care, which tell a story.

That’s why we love to make things using vintage images and illustrations from antique postcards. Rich in color, artistic technique and symbolism, postcard illustrations from the turn-of-the-century capture the essence of life’s highlights – holidays, celebrations, and sentiments – in strong visuals. Far beyond clip art. When used as a central element of new art, they speak their storied past in a contemporary setting.

Crafting with vintage images is also a way of keeping this artwork alive and vibrant. The Golden Age of postcards ended with World War I, and the rise of the telephone. Once relegated to collectors and picture books, the digital age of the Internet is making incredible Public Domain vintage images available again – but how can you use them creatively?

We hope to answer that question, and make these images live again, with these fun and easy crafts.  Many of these projects may decorate your home. Many more can be thoughtful gifts. In this age of mass-production and Amazon-handy items, the most treasured gifts are those made by hand. At its heart, each project begins with the simplest of raw materials – a beautiful vintage image.

As you explore, it might become painfully obvious and also gratefully appreciated – master-crafter Martin is a Kindergarten teacher.

VintageImageCraft is all about IDEAS AND INSPIRATION

We are passionate about sharing this vanished art. Two generations of obsessive family collecting will do that.

Our website will take time to develop.  We have paint under our fingernails and glitter in our hair, but we are getting there.  Please come back often. And please, contact us with a note if you have ideas or questions.

Scott & Martin

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