Introduction: Naughty or Nice Snowman Card
I work in the world of cartoons, so the best cards to me are the funny, surprising, and slightly off-beat ones. Using moving paper card parts to reveal a joke was an interesting challenge to myself. The photo above shows both main positions of the card slider. Check it out in motion HERE because I couldn't get the video file to embed for some reason. My boyfriend is seriously worried that this card is so cute someone from Hallmark or Shoebox is going to see this Ible and steal it.
Read on to learn how to make this saucy little snow buddy for your friend, loved one, or favorite dirty uncle!
Step 1: You Will Need...
1 Sheet Colored Cardstock or Scrapbooking Paper --I found one that had a nice sparkly snow motif. You can use whatever appeals to you, knowing that you'll be painting white on top of it.
1 Sheet White Cardstock
Used Notecard (for size reference)
Black, Brown and White Craft Acrylic Paints
Orange Paper (or acrylic paint)
Plastic Wiggle Eyes
Scrap Paper (for pattern)
Step 2: Main Card
Flip your colored card stock onto the backside.
Line up the right edge of your notecard template in the corner of your colored card stock. I used a 3.5 x 5 card since you can find standard envelopes to fit this size.
Make small pencil notches on the colored card stock, to mark the width and height of the card.
Move the card over, lining up the right edge with your width pencil mark. Make your notches again.
Repeat a third time, so that you have measured out 3x your template card's width.
Cut out your long rectangle shape. A ruler and x-acto will give you precise results.
Step 3: Fold the Card Into Sections
Fold your card into thirds, using the pencil notches you made as your guides.
Folding along the edge of your ruler may aid you in getting a straight fold.
Once this is done, you may erase your pencil notches if you wish.
Step 4: Plotting Out the Track
Let's focus on the left-most facet of your card.
Using a ruler along the bottom edge, find the midpoint of the card's width. Since we know my card to be 3.5 inches wide, that means my midpoint is at 1.75 inches. Make a pencil notch here.
Now measure .5 inch on either side of the midpoint mark. Make pencil notches here too.
Use your ruler and pencil to draw two lines going straight up from your side marks.This is the width of the track for your sliding card part.
Step 5: Snowman Guide
You can either freehand a snowman shape around this track, or make a template from scratch paper that fits within your main card dimensions. I'm cautious and used a template.
Trace your snowman shape onto the middle of your card stock, over your "track" lines. The track should run right up his center when you're done.
Step 6: Making the View Ports
Mark off a square of "track" just below center of the snowman's head shape.
Mark off anther square of "track" slightly above center of his lower body (legs?) shape.
Cut out the squares with an X-acto blade.
Flip the card over so your decorative side shows.
Center your snowman template on the card, so that the open squares are beneath him.
Trace your snowman shape in pencil again, lightly. You should end up with a snowman with viewing ports running up the middle, just like you had it plotted on the back.
Step 7: White Paint
Use white craft acrylic to fill in the snowman on the front of your card. You will want to put a piece of scrap paper underneath so paint that goes over the edge of the view ports doesn't wreck anything. I used an Omaha Steaks brochure, because they'll probably send me 4 new ones this week anyway.
If you plan to make multiples of this card, you may save time by making a snowman shaped stamp out of foam, so you can just smack those suckers on multiple cards in a row.
Depending on your card stock color, you may need two coats of white to make a nice opaque fill. Allow adequate dry time between coats so your card stock doesn't bow with moisture.
Step 8: Make the Slider
While you wait for your paint to dry, you can busy yourself making the sliding part of your card.
Remember that the width of your track is approx. 1 inch.
Measure a peice of plain white card stock that is just short of 1 inch wide and the height of your card + 1 inch. So in my case, the slider was 6 inches long.
If you like, you can round out the end that will be your pull tab. I traced the base of one of my paint bottles.
Cut out the slider strip.
Step 9: Glue to Set the Track
The first photo shows where you'll be applying lines of glue. Purple = Glue.
Apply lines of glue along the TOP edge, LEFT edge, and just outside both "track" lines.Do not apply the glue ON the track lines. We need to leave just a little wiggle room for your slider.
Smear the glue thin with your finger tip to avoid buckles and bulges in your card stock.
Fold this left face of the card over onto the center face and press.
Run your fingers down the edges to get a crisp fold and good adhesion. It may help to press the card flat with a book or box for even glue contact (again, omaha steaks answered the call).
Allow to dry.
Step 10: Insert Slider
After giving the glue a few minutes to dry, insert your slider pice into the bottom center of the card.
Your glue lines will have stuck the card together in a way that prevents the slider from going anywhere other than where you want it, which is right up the center.
Work the slider back and forth a few times to clear the track of any unwanted glue remnants.
Step 11: Nose Carrot
I think this joke works best if the upper and lower carrots are as similar as possible, so I chose to cut out two identical carrots rather than freehand paint them.
Apply a dot of the glue to the back of your orange paper carrot. Smear with your finger to create a thin film.
With your slider pushed ALL THE WAY UP,apply the carrot to the slider through the face port. Press and smooth as needed.
*If you choose to freehand paint the carrot on the slider, you will need to allow drying time before moving o the next step.
Step 12: Lower Carrot
Pull your slider down until the nose carrot is just out of view.
Apply your second orange paper carrot to the slider through the lower window, using the same glue method.
Work your slider back and forth. You should see that as one carrot disappears, the other will emerge.
Step 13: Fun Details
Now that our function is out of the way, its time for FASHION!
Use your black craft acrylic to give him a smile. I made a little side smirk out of coals.
I also figured "go big or go home" and decided to give him coal balls. Full disclosure: I had this card on my list of things to make anyway, then I watched Dumb and Dumber. The scene with Harry building the snowman inspired the coal balls.
Use brown craft acrylic to make funny stick arms. Depending on the width of your card, you may not have a ton of elbow room. I gave my snowman some exuberant arms in the air, because I think that's what a nudist snowman might do.
You can paint on eyes, or use plastic wiggle eyes. I think wiggle eyes are a great humorous touch to most projects, so I found a size I liked and attached them with a dot of glue.
In the end, I felt like I needed my snowman to pop off the page more. The light blue background was just too close to the white paint. Use a black sharpie to outline his body if you find this to be the case for you.
Pull Tab -- To make it clear to the card recipient what needs to be done, I think its a good idea to either have an arrow or the word "pull" on the end of your tab. You could do this with marker, pen, paint, or stickers. I had some nice crisp arrow stickers around, so I applied one of those.
Step 14: Clothing Optional
You may find that your snowman is a little plain and be tempted to dress him up. I tried a few things that all looked like too much once the joke carrot was revealed. In the end, simple black bow tie, cut from scrap paper, was just right.
#1 thing I've learned working in comedy animation: DON'T STEP ON THE JOKE. So in this case, avoid super bright colors or anything really large that will distract from your lower carrot reveal!
Step 15: Text
I'm pretty pleased with the text I came up with for this card. If any hallmark people are out there, don't steal it! :)
I created my text in photoshop because I'm terrible at hand lettering. The font I used is called Clementine, if anyone is curious. Remember to keep your card width in mind when designing your lettering.
Print and Cut Out your text blocks. Chop the page into rough sections first, then go back and make nice rounded cuts comfortably outside your letters.
Apply a thin layer of glue to the backs of you text blocks. I made something for the front of the card and the interior. Place, press, and smooth.
Since my font was hollow, I also went in with a metallic blue gel one and filled select lettering to make it pop.
Step 16: The Reveal!
Done! This card is sure to delight your loved ones...unless your loved ones are all nuns. Make your own to give with gifts or use this moving track/ slider concept to come up with your own naughty character cards.
If this little guy made you laugh, consider throwing me vote in the Papercraft contest.