How to make festive gift tags from old business cards and magazines

3 Christmas gift tags made from old business cards and magazine pages

Christmas can be a very expensive time of the year but there are some easy and creative ways you can still make things special and not spend a lot.

I love a nicely wrapped gift. We all know that it’s what inside that matters but I think a well presented gift makes the whole experience extra special and can elevate a small relatively cheap present into something more.

A beautiful gift tag is a great place to start with gift wrapping. Brown paper, twine and a gorgeous gift tag makes a present look beautiful.


Today it’s time for another Sustainable Pinterest Challenge where I’m joined by some of my creative blogging friends to bring you some eco friendly, sustainable ideas that have been inspired by our long hours spend scrolling through Pinterest. Anyone who uses Pinterest a lot will now that it has changed in recent years and it sadly has a lot of ads, videos, broken links etc. However it is still a great place to find craft inspiration which is what I still use it for. Whenever I see a great idea online that I want to remember I will always pin it to one of my many Pinterest boards, knowing that I will at least be able to find it again.

The theme for this month’s Sustainable Pinterest Challenge is Christmas so I set about finding an easy and sustainable way to make some sweet gift tags. I was inspired by some multi media paper crafting I’d pinned here and here. I love the look for multi media papercrafting but whenever I watch You Tube video tutorials it does seems to use a lot of different mediums (that’s the “multi” bit, right?) So in the spirit of just using what I already have, I massively simplified things for my gift tags!

My father passed away at the beginning of 2021 and we have been gradually sorting all his stuff out. In his office we found several boxes of business cards, I guess back in the day everyone had boxes of these with each change of job role and if you were anything like my dad (a little bit of a hoarder) you keep the old box.

I’ve kept a few of the business cards and popped them in a photo album, just to keep as a bit of family history, but the box of cards is still VERY full. I have a LOT of these business cards to spare. Time to find ways to upcycle them.

I experiments with a few different ways to turn these old business cards into gift tags, some were more successful than others. I kept it simple, I wanted these to be a quick make so mine are not as fancy as the inspiration that I had originally pinned.

To make upcycled gift tags you will need:

Repurposed business card gift tags

Start by pulling pages from your magazines. You are looking for adverts with Christmassy images, articles with a Christmas illustration etc. I used an old November issue of Mollie Makes which had plenty of Christmas references, crafts, adverts and illustrations but any magazine with ads and images will work.

3 photos showing how to apply glue to an old business card to cover it with paper

Apply a layer of glue over the printed side of the old business card and then apply a piece of magazine page. I used a pva glue and spread it with a brush, then smoothed it with a bone folder. If you don’t have a bone folder you can use a clean dry lolly/popsicle stick.

Once the glue is dry, it only took a few minutes, trim the excess magazine page.

Then push the covered business card into the tag punch centrally and punch the tag shape. Make sure you have the tag the right way up if the bit of magazine you are using has a direction.

To finish these tags I cut a load of Christmassy words from the magazine and the glued them on. I used a stick glue for these tiny bits of paper just to make things less messy but use what you have.

Text and Picture Christmas Gift Tags from magazines

These tags with text are made in the same way as the previous tags. Just use bits of magazine with text or writing to cover the business cards. I tried to pick out articles that mention Christmas so there are at least a few festive words on them.

I had a couple of pages in my magazine which had some retro looking images on an ad. So I tore the page up and just added small sections over the writing.

Then I punched the tag shape at the end as before.

Gift tags made from old magazines and old business cards

Painted business card fail

I also tried painting the business cards with acrylic paint. It didn’t really work, the text still showed through to much.

I thought a few torn bits of pretty paper would be enough to cover any writing but honestly I wasn’t at all happy with how this turned out. I’ve included the photo just so you can see. Another coat of paint might have worked but I worried it might make the card a bit crispy.

I think a thicker media first, like a gesso might work if you want to paint your old business cards. I don’t happen to have any so I’m sticking with covering business cards with magazine ads and Christmassy articles for now.

recycled gift tags made from old business cards
An upcycled gift tag on a jar filled with Christmas baubles
Business cars turned into festive gift tags
a selection of gift tags made by upcycling old business cards and magazines

Now it’s time to see what my fellow creative blogger friends have been pinspired by this month. Our theme this month is Christmas and we all look to put a environmentally friendly/sustainable twist to our projects to show that crafting beautiful things doesn’t need to cost the earth..


If you are a creative blogger and would like to join the Sustainable Pinterest Challenge in 2023 please do get in touch.

A collage of Christmas craft ideas using recycled materials