How to Make a 3-D Découpage Christmas Card - dummies

How to Make a 3-D Découpage Christmas Card

By Rob Ives

Save money this Christmas by making your own découpage Christmas cards with a 3-D effect. These découpage holiday cards are fun to make and easy for children to do. People enjoy getting homemade cards because they reflect the love and care you put into making them.

To achieve the 3-D effect, you use multiple copies of the same image. Use these copies to make layers in the picture and give the impression of depth. You can buy actual decoupage kits from your local card shop, but making pictures from your own source materials is more fun. Look for inexpensive greeting cards, postcards, or multiple copies of your own photographs.


This project uses sticky foam pads, which you can get from your stationery shop, usually near the sticky tape. They come in packs with a dozen sheets, each sheet with maybe 100 pads.

  • Three identical cards showing a scene you can easily cut out.

  • Scissors

  • Ruler

  • Sharp craft knife

  • Cutting mat

  • 1 sheet of double-sided sticky foam pads

  1. Set aside one card for your base; use the others for the cut-outs.

  2. Plan your card’s design.

    The design depends on the card you’re using. Find one that has three or four subjects on the card — for example, a couple of carolers and a Christmas tree. Decide which parts of the card that you want to look “raised.”

  3. Cut out the pieces for the different layers.

    Use scissors where you can. For complicated pieces bits or holes, use your sharp craft knife. You end up with a collection of bits.

    The lower-left image is the base; the lower-right is the second layer. The cut-out arm and book for
    The lower-left image is the base; the lower-right is the second layer. The cut-out arm and book form the third layer.
  1. Stick the first layer of your picture into place.


    Use the double-sided sticky pads to put the pictures into place. Stick the pads to the back of the new layer. Peel off the backing of the sticky pad and carefully apply the layer to the base card, making sure that it’s lined up accurately.

    You can also separate the layers by using blobs of thick, silicone-based glue. Make sure you don’t squash the glue when you build up the layers. You need to leave the glue to dry overnight.

  2. Complete the card by adding the extra layer parts.

    Use the sticky pads to fix the remaining parts into place. Make sure they’re lined up accurately.

    For smaller parts, you may need to cut the sticky pads into smaller pieces so that they don’t stick out of the sides.

You can use this technique to make all kinds of pictures on all sorts of scales. Try making 3-D decoupage from your own photographs or from prints of classical paintings. The layered effect and the shadows that the layers cast have a wonderful effect. Your pictures look really three-dimensional.