Monday, April 8, 2013

To Laminate or Not to Laminate

 There has always been the question about whether or not to laminate your business cards. Personally, I prefer them laminated for a couple of reasons. 

            1. They are less likely to get damaged or dirty.
            2. They look more professional
               3. People are more likely to keep your cards if they're laminated.    

It's very easy to laminate your own cards and laminators are inexpensive, usually running between $15-$25 (I bought mine at Aldi several yrs ago for $20). Following is a tutorial on how to laminate your own cards. Don't be intimidated--it's very easy!

First you need to purchase business card sized lamination sheets. I purchased mine in bulk at Lamination Depot. They have a lot of various sized lamination sheets and supplies and their shipping is fast. If you don't want to buy in bulk then you can purchase the sheets at your local department store or office store.

Second you need your cards. Whatever cards you use for your business are fine. There are quite a few online resources you can use to purchase them. Or if you have a local printer, you can go there. The cards I used in this tutorial were a free download for play date cards. I just changed the text. You can find these at Creative Mamma. Or you can be creative and make your own.
Ok, now that we have everything we need, let's get started! The first thing you do is to put your card in the lamination sheet. Be sure to put the top of your card towards the fold. Try to get it centered as best you can. 
The next step is to place the card inside the cardstock "folder". These should come with your sheets but if not you can make your own easily enough. Just cut out card stock a little bigger than your sheets and fold it in half.
Now all you do is put it in the laminator. I can fit two in mine side by side at the same time. Do NOT push the cards into the laminator--just push them in until the laminator "grabs" them and let it do the rest. 
That's all there is to it! When you're done you'll have nice, professional cards that will hold up for a much longer period than non-laminated cards. You can also glue a magnet to the back so customers can put them on their refrigerator or filing cabinets.