Thursday, May 26, 2011

Technique Thursday: Make a swing card without a template

by Joanne Wardle

How to make a swing card without a template.

I have seen many designs for swing cards that just don’t work properly. To me when a swing card is closed you should be able to see all of the front of the swing piece and none of it should be hidden under the left hand “bar”

To achieve this you need to follow very specific, but simple, measurements. There are a few basic rules.
  • The swing shape needs to be vertically symmetrical.
  • You need to be able to measure its widest point, and divide this measurement by 4.
    • The key to this is find this measurement, make a note of it, and from this point just consider it a “chunk” or “measure” as all further measurements will just be a multiple of this.
    • In the sample I have made I have used a 4 inch square, as this is the simplest shape to explain it, but you could just as easily use a heart or circle, and any size can be divided by four.
  • The height of the shape and the final card are unimportant.
  • The width of the final open card will be twice the width of the shape.

Okay, so here’s what you do.
  • Take a template of your central shape and find the quarter measurement (call this 1 measure) and then mark up as shown.

  • Take your card, which is twice the width of your central shape, and split into 8 measures. Draw in the swing post between measures 3 and 4 as shown.

  • Line up your template so that the lines you have drawn match. And draw around the template

  • Now cut and score as shown (red lines are cut, blue lines are score)

  • Fold the blue lines as showm

Basically that’s it! But here’s a few more pictures to explain it, if it’s not yet clear.

All of the products used to make the final card, are available from the frantic stamper.

I’d love to see any cards you make using this method. Hope you enjoy it!


  1. Wonderfully clear instructions. Wish I'd had them last week before I wrecked 3 cards! LOL Thanks Joanne.

  2. These instructions are great, but I feel the size and shape of the final card IS important if you don't make your own envelopes.

  3. Anonymous4:17 PM

    Thank you so much Joanne! I've just enjoyed making a card with these instructions and my brand-new Stampin' Up circle framelits! I got the math wrong, so I'll have to figure out the envelope problem, but I think I have it nailed down for the next time. I usually use envelopes that hold a card that's 4.25 x 5.5", so I'll use paper that's 7 x 4.25 or 5.5 x 5.5". The cut-out will then be 3.5" or 2.75". Getting those score lines right will be a tiny challenge, but I think for the first it'll be 2 5/8" and 3 1/2" and the second 2 1/16 and 2 2/3". I will try it out and see if it works, but I'm pretty sure that's the numbers you need tala1947. This is so much fun! -- Jan

  4. these are great instructions and very easy to follow. at last I can make the swing card any size I want now with your help.
    thank you

  5. Thanks so much Joanne! The instructions are so simple to follow and the results are fabulous...even for a newbie like me :-)