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Show the dog lover in your life you care with a handmade dog friendly seed paper greeting card. Each one is handmade with dog friendly seeds and is ready to be planted.
A few weeks ago, Koly helped me with some paper crafting.
In retrospect, I might have been having more fun than he was. Our Facebook friends had a lot of good guesses about what we were making (and inspired some future projects. Anyone up for a little paw print quilling project??) Nobody guessed what we were making though, so today we’re super excited to tell you all about it and give you the inside track on how to make your own dog friendly seed paper greeting cards.
You guys, these might look all fancy and junk, but they were super easy to make. So easy that I bet this would make a great art project for kids (or you know, un-crafty adults). They make such a lovely gift. I love bringing a seed paper card with an herb mix or a pretty pet-safe flower, along with a great pot or planter, as a hostess gift to dog friendly barbeques and seed paper that will grow common mosquito repellent plants is a thoughtful gift for anyone that loves to hang out on their dog friendly deck after dark, plus seeds like carrot or strawberry make a tasty edible treat that your loved ones can enjoy all summer.
Here’s what you need:
Seed Paper Supplies:
Coloured scrapbook paper
Dog Friendly Herb & Flower Seeds
Flat Mesh Strainer or Splatter Screen (Get one on Amazon for under $10 <-affiliate link)
Large Mixing Bowl
Clean Kitchen Towels
Card Making Supplies:
Blank Greeting Cards (like these ones from Amazon <-Affiliate Link)
Theme Stickers & Embellishments
Let’s Make the Paper:
OK, so when you’re making seed paper, the finished product will never be as thin as the original, so count on using more scrapbook paper than you will get back in seed paper. I usually use 2 sheets of scrapbook paper for every one sheet of finished seed paper.
Trim the paper into small, confetti style pieces. (While you can do this with a paper cutter or scissors, all the smart kids use their paper shredder on the “cross cut” setting. Sadly, my Mama pointed this out AFTER I had hand cut a woof load of paper strips. Thanks a heap, Mom.)
Once your paper is in cute little confetti pieces, soak them in water for 20 – 30 minutes.
Once the paper is thoroughly soaked, you need to turn it into paper pulp. While some tutorials say you can mash the paper with a fork or beat it into pulp using your bare hands, I suspect these methods are best left to people who are craftier than me. I always get the best results when I make my pulp in a blender or food processor. Place the soaked paper, along with a generous amount of water, into the blender and pulse until smooth. (Don’t worry if there is a lot of water and the mix is thin, we’ll remove the water in the next step.)
Take your paper pulp and stir in your chosen seeds. I love making dog friendly seed paper, which means choosing plants that will be non-toxic and pet safe. Some of my favourite choices are:
- Parsley Seed – This versatile herb is great for cooking with, but I love it because, if chewed, it will help freshen skanky dog breath. I like to tape an envelope of wheatgrass seeds into my card (they’re too large to make a nice seed paper) and encourage planting them together. My dogs are natural grazers and they’ll happily much on parsley planted amongst the grass.
- Carrot Seed – These tiny seeds can be a real pain in the tail to plant! They do, however, make a great fresh from the garden snack for dogs. Making seed paper with carefully place, evenly spaced carrot seeds is a thoughtful gift for anyone planting a dog friendly garden.
- Catnip Seed – Besides being a natural mosquito repellent, this one makes a lovely gift for the kitty lover in your life.
- SnapDragon Seed – These tall, stately flowers are non-toxic to dogs and one of my absolute favourite plants. They just look so cheerful!
- Alyssium Seed – I love this dainty, creeping plant. The yellow, tucked into hanging baskets is particularly lovely.
- Aster Seed – Aster is such a cheerful flower and a bright addition to any garden. I love how it is tall and striking enough to make such a pretty backdrop of canine photo shoots.
When choosing your favourite dog friendly seeds, consult the ASPCA Toxicity List to make sure the seeds are safe. Try to choose seeds that are on the smaller side. Chunky seeds might grow gorgeous plants, but they make crappy seed paper, as you can’t get it thin enough to dry evenly.
Once your seeds are mixed in, place the mesh screen over your mixing bowl and pour the paper across it, using your hands to spread it into a thin layer.
Honestly, it is SO EASY and if you’re “lucky” it will even have a little bit of dog love in it.
By “dog love”, I mean hair. Koly sheds like it’s his job and you can definitely see a few puggle hairs all up in my seed paper, if you look closely. He sends his love.
You can really make anything you want with your dog friendly seed paper. I’ve seen this used as lovely gift tags, pillow boxes, seat cards, garlands and even these super darling paper flowers. I decided to make cards with mine. There is just something so lovely and thoughtful about a handmade card, isn’t there? Think about it, cards are the first handmade gifts you start giving as a kid and somewhere along the way, in this world of email, print on demand and Hallmark, we stop doing it. I love taking the time to make something a little more personal.
Tips for Making Dog Friendly Seed Paper Cards
Making handmade cards is so easy, but there are a few things to know when working with seed paper.
- It’s thicker than regular paper, so you don’t want to over use it. Choose one element – a background, a single design or an embellishment – and go with it. Creating a card with multiple layers of seed paper can get bulky and it won’t plant as well.
- It has an uneven surface. Becaus it’s rustic and handmade, it’s not smooth like ordinary paper. You may need to use a generous amount of glue.
- If your seed paper isn’t flat, you can spritz it very lightly with water on the surface and press it into a heavy book for 15 minutes. That will flatten it back out and make it easier to glue.
- If you’re going to mix seeds on a single card, make sure they will grow well together. Ideally, they will need the same type of soil, the same amount of moisture and need the same amount of sun.
- Even if you make a non-dog themed design, you can add small “doggy” touches. For example, you can barely see it in the picture, but the wording “Best Friends” has tiny bones on it. The centers in the “special day” flowers are actually paw prints and there’s a note in the carrot card explaining that they are one of our favourite snacks for dogs.
Bonus Tip: You can use a dog themed paper punch to turn leftover and scrap seed paper into a dog themed, plantable confetti.
It’s always thoughtful to include planting instructions in with your card, just in case the recipient isn’t sure what to do with it.
Dog Friendly Seed Paper Planting Instructions:
You’re going to need your seed paper, some quality potting soil and a small pot (or section of your garden.)
Fill the pot with soil and gently pack it. (You want it compressed, but not hard.) Detach the seed paper from your card, place on top of the soil and cover with a thin (about 1/8″) layer of dirt.
Give the seeds a nice, generous drink to start them off, but after that you only need to give them enough water to keep them moist.
Place your plant in a sunny spot, keep it lightly watered and in a few weeks, you should have sprouts!
You can download a printable version of these instructions here.
Have you ever made or received seed paper? What did you think of it?
Wednesday 17th of September 2014
I love your things
Sunday 21st of September 2014
Awwwwww, thank you Sandra! That means so much to me.
Saturday 14th of June 2014
I am going to try making these cards. Great idea!
Sandy Van Nostrand
Friday 13th of June 2014
This is such a great gift idea, I would love these cards!
Thursday 12th of June 2014
Oh, wow, that is quite cool. No, never heard of this before.
Thursday 12th of June 2014
Never heard of anything like this. It seems like a lot of work, but fun for someone that likes to garden.
Thursday 12th of June 2014
You know, it looks so much harder than it was?! The whole process took less than half hour to make the seed paper (including the time to let the paper sit and soak) and I made four colours in that time! It only maybe 10 - 15 minutes to make the cards?