>>>>This ATC can be given as it is, or adhered to the front of a blank greeting card, or you can put an eyelet on either side of the top edge, thread a ribbon through it, and hang it on the Christmas tree.
>>>>I shared this pattern with participants in our latest ATC workshop, and everyone seemed to like it. We adjusted the template to fit specific needs, for instance, one participant wanted an envelope that could hold postage stamps, as sold by the post office on in those booklets/sheets.
>>>>Here's how to make the ATC at left:
>>>>Use a blank ATC and decorate it with paints, collage, or colorful papers. The one in this picture has a painted background. Here's how to make the background:
>>>>Painted Background of ATC:
>>>>Place several ATCs on scrap paper or plastic. (I used 6 and work on them all at the same time.) You'll need 2 colors of acrylic paint, plus one metallic (I used gold from the Luminare line sold at http://www.europeanpapers.com/).
>>>>Take a medium size brush and apply the first color in random, happy stripes, squares, and circles.
>>>>Take a smaller brush and apply the second color in joyful squiggles, dabs, and dollops.
>>>>Take the metallic paint; dip your brush or a popsicle stick, in the paint and drip, splatter and splotch it on the ATCs. The gold dot on the bottom left of my ATC was made with a round sponge brush. I bought a set of sponge brushes in the crafts department of a discount store and they are perfect for this. You could also make your own sponge brushes in a variety of shapes. Cut out shapes from sponges, glue one side of the sponge to a piece of plastic (like a square cut out from the lid of a tub of Cool Whip), and voila, your own unique shaped sponge/stamp!
>>>>While the happy painted ATC is drying, move on to making the envelope.
>>>>Making the envelope:
>>>>The envelope below measures 2 x 2 inches. If you print this image out from your computer, make sure it prints so that the square is 2 x 2, otherwise your envelope will be smaller or larger, but it will still be proportionally okay.
>>>>A tiny envelope is made by drawing a square and then drawing half of an oval on each side of the square. (see the attached template). I altered the formula slightly, as I like one side a bit longer and the opposite side a bit shorter, so that a button can be placed on the longer side and a hole punched in the shorter side, to make an envelope as shown on this ATC. Cut one envelope pattern out on test paper and see what proportions you like. You might prefer pointed, triangular flaps rather than rounded ones. Or, perhaps you’ll cut the top flap with decorative scissors. Or, maybe you’d prefer a rectangular envelope rather than a square one.
>>Cut the envelope shape out.
>>>>Score the crease lines with an Xacto knife on the pretty side of the paper. (only necessary if the paper is thick)
>>>>Punch a 1/8 inch hole in the middle of the top flap. Put an eyelet in the hole. If you don't have an eyelet maker, put a reinforcement "donut" around the hole, or put clear tape on either side of where you want the hole, then punch the hold. If the paper for your envelope is card stock, (heavier paper) you might not need to reinforce the hole. If it is thin (rice paper) you will have to reinforce the hole. In any case, the eyelet gives a nice finished look and is easier to make than you might think. Directions come with the eyelet maker, available at most hobby/craft stores.
>>>>Sew a button in the middle of the bottom flap.
>>>>Now glue the envelope together: glue the bottom flap with the button to the side flaps (all folded properly of course with the button flap on top). IMPORTANT: use a gluestick or, if using white glue, put a piece of scrap paper inside the envelope. You don't want your envelope gluing shut inside so that you can't put anything in it.
>>>>Take a 6 inch piece of thread and put a bead in the middle of it, thread both ends through the hole in the top flap. Estimate the length needed (6 inches is good) for the loop to go around the button and make a knot just below where the button would be. Put two small beads on the end of each length of thread and make a knot after each small bead, trim the thread.
>>>>Glue the back of the envelope to your now dry painted ATC.
>>>>Optional: I also cut strips of thin (1/8 inch) decorative paper out with scalloped scissors and glued those on the side of the envelope.
Inside the envelope, you can place small photographs, small notes, or tiny ATCs, or money gifts! You can put two holes in the top of the ATC, string ribbon, yarn or raffia through, and hang on the tree for money gifts.