Creating With Vintage Photos (Mama Said Card)

“Mama Said There’d Be Days Like This….

Good Thursday morning, folks.  Now that I’ve got you humming that nostalgic tune, how about we discuss creating with vintage photos?  Vintage photos are a hot trend right now, and you can easily use your own family vintage photos to create unique and meaningful gifts.  With Mother’s Day right around the corner, this is a great way to fashion a one of a kind gift for Mom that’s guaranteed to make her laugh (or cry, as the case may be) and feel especially  loved.

The Story Behind the card

I have a best friend who lives in Georgia.  We’ve known each other since we were both young wives and mothers….more than 32 years now.  Dianne is a girlfriend’s girlfriend!  She and I have been together through thick and thin –literally and figuratively!  About a year ago, we enjoyed a glorious girlfriend’s weekend together.  There was wine, laughter, fabulous food, shopping, shopping, shopping and late nights filled with reminiscing and girl fun.  Dianne is a fabulous decorator, and I enjoyed a tour of her beautiful home.  She has this photo of her mom hanging in her laundry room:

Mom fixed & smaller (2) Her mom lived in base housing in Massachusetts when Diane and her three siblings were small.  There was no dryer in the home…everything had to be hung out on the line.  Two of her kids wet the bed, so there was always a ton of laundry to be done.  On this very windy day in March, her Mom was trying to hang out the freshly laundered sheets, and the frisky spring wind kept whipping them and breaking the clothesline, causing the sheets to fall on the ground…which meant they had to be laundered all over again.  Can you believe this happened three times?  After the third time, Dianne’s mom went to her friend’s house and said, “Come and take a picture of this.  If I don’t laugh about it, I know I will cry.”  So the picture was taken, and the rest is history.  

The minute I saw this photo, a plan hatched in my brain.  I asked Dianne to e-mail me a copy of the photo, which she did, and this year for Christmas, I carried out the plan.  Here’s what I created with this vintage photo:

002 (2) Click on photo for larger image.

I cropped the photo, printed it on matte photo paper in sepia tones and matted it on brown cardstock,  I stamped a graphic stamp around the perimeter of the kraft card base using copper metallic ink.  The corners were rounded, and a cute little tag was affixed to the lower left corner of the photo:

004 I added twine to the top of the card and that, as they say, was that.  I kept it simple, wanting this fabulous vintage photo to be the star of the show.  I made 8 of these 5×7 cards for Dianne, packaged them in clear cellophane packaging and tied ribbons and twine around the top.  The day she received the package, she called me in tears, “The best present ever…” was her verdict.

Creating with vintage photos for special occasions

We all have these photos around the house.  The color photos are often not so great looking, but printed in sepia or black and white, they take on an elegant finish.  You could use a vintage photo of your child on the first day of school and put it into a set of thank you notes for high school or college graduation.  A vintage photo of a Bride to Be playing dress up would make great thank you notes or wedding shower invites.  For the expectant mom, you could use her baby pictures….there is no end of clever ideas for creating with vintage photos.  It’s inexpensive, meaningful and unique.  It requires very little crafting ability and almost no crafting tools.  The bottom line?  You can do this!!!  And you’ll look like a gift-giving rock star in the process!

That’s it for me today.  I leave you to get going on your own, creating with vintage photos…and humming, “Mama Said There’d be Days Like This!”  Hoping this is one of the good days Mama told you would come your way.  Until next time,



Product used in this project:  Paper: 5×7 kraft card bases and envelopes from Darice; brown cardstock from Bazzil; Dies: Tim Holtz Alterations Tiny tags and Tabs; Punches: 1 3/8 ” circle punch; Inks: Ranger Distress Ink in Vintage Photo and Tea Dye; Colorbox Cat’s Eye Pigment Brush Pad in Copper; Twine: DMC cotton floss color 644; Stamps: Japanese fan, Maya Road; Flourish: Technique Tuesday.

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11 thoughts on “Creating With Vintage Photos (Mama Said Card)

  1. Angie in Illinois

    I happened upon your site after seeing your beautiful card on Mary’s Fish’s site today, 11/17/13. I love, love, love this ‘mama said’ card and the story behind it. It was such a thoughtful thing you did for your friend.

  2. Anne Burr

    Hi, Kathy! Love, love, love this! My friend, Grace, who is the niece of the lady hanging the laundry sent this to me a couple of months ago via e-mail. Then she asked me if I had done anything with black and whites. I started rummaging through old photos and found several that I am very proud of the results. She came over and we worked on a project she was making for her sisters using B/W of their parents. Thanks for the inspiration! I am so thrilled with the new avenue of card making.
    And by the way, welcome to the Pals Group! Found you through Ann Sachs (sp) and Mary Fish!

  3. Anne Burr

    Kathy, checked out your website through Mary Fish, Stampin’ Up Pal. Imagine my surprise when I
    checked the 20 minute card segment. The “Mama said there would be days like this” was definitely
    a surprise. The lady in the picture was the AUNT of a friend of mine who is also the namesake of the lady hanging the laundry. She had e-mailed me the picture a couple of months ago.

    My friend, having some old black and whites of her parents, asked me if I could help her with a project she wanted to do for her sisters. What you did totally inspired me and I am having a blast with old pictures,mine as well as hers! Thanks for sharing ideas and welcome to the Pals group!

  4. Anita Houston

    Love what you’ve done with this photo…another laundry moment! I love it so! I’ve often used portraits to do this to, but never ordinary everyday moments…I like that better. You are too clever, and this card will be treasured and probably fought over…lol!

  5. Julie

    Memories – aren’t they great – I remember doing the very same thing growing up in Maine – hanging clothes in the winter, for them to freeze – and then standing them up around the kitchen to thaw out and finish drying! Well maybe not memories – was that a nightmare now that I think back on it! What a wonderful gift and I love that she has this picture hanging where she sees it every day – and realizes how much easier her life is than her moms I’m sure!!

  6. Vicki Chrisman

    Seriously… I love this so so much I don’t know whether to laugh or cry… it’s just SO stinking SWEET! It’s defiantly JUST what I mean about those everyday things!!! OH what I would do to have a photo of my mom like this. I know my mom hung out MANY MANY lines of clothes with 7kids over the years. lol Thankyou so much for sharing this sweet story. AND your darling card! I love that you did it in sepia and the saying is SO perfect!! LOVE!!!

  7. Tanya

    I was nearly in tears myself. When I saw this I just drew in my breath….a picture really is worth a thousand words….what a gift of love. Those life long friendships are so rare and worth investing such treasures as these cards into. I loved your tales of your relationship with Dianne. How clear the bond is between you. How joyful the love. Simple. Tested. True.
    This was a masterpiece with so much history. Thank you for sharing that story with us. I think the next frontier for you may be your own book of tales and I can just imagine all the glory of that cover <3

  8. Deborah

    Oh my… the waves of nostalgia you have created here! I, too, have memories of my mother and the sheets blowing in the wind! What a RICH photo this is that captured the memory so many of us have in our minds! Thank you for this, Kathy! You are so RICH in thought and idea. Keep it up! I am loving these trips down memory lane with you! <3

  9. ncguygirl

    OMG, this is great! LOVE IT! What a fun gift, with so much personal meaning, but also so funny. You amaze me!

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