Creative Papercraft Challenges

Creative challenges are really popular with papercrafters. It's a great medium to showcase your creativity, show versatility with new Stampin' Up! products and introduce new people from all over the world to your blog!

I personally find that working to a challenge brief using sketches, colour combinations or themes is a great focus for you to provide varied content for your blog and customers! Yes, the challenges can be difficult sometimes, especially when they do not fit your personal style, however, I find this helps you grow and become more diverse as a papercraft blogger.

I've provided below all of the challenge websites I have come across - just click on the image to visit their website. Most set a weekly challenge and provide various ways for you to submit a photo of your card and link to your website. Sometimes, you can enter one project for multiple challenges. Just make sure you check out the challenge rules first!

My personal favourites are Global Design Project, TGIF Challenges and The Spot!

I have added at the bottom of this page, a few tips when entering these challenges - I hope they are helpful!

To see my challenge badges and the projects I entered click here






Helpful tips

Referencing the challenge website in your posts

Make sure you promote the challenge website by adding their graphic to your blog post. Add the link to the URL to the graphic, directing those who click on it to the specific post about the challenge you are entering. Include their hashtag in your post text, if they have one. This encourages traffic to the challenge website, in return for the new visitors they are introducing to your website.

Image ratio & file sizes for link up tables

If using a mobile phone to photograph your project, change the camera settings so that the picture is 1:1. This will give you a square image, which works really well with Instagram and also the inlinkz table where you submit your entry. You won't need to crop your photo and the whole image will be shown in the thumbnail. Make sure the image file size is small - it usually needs to be under 2mb. I use Canva to add watermarks to my photos, I make sure I decrease the quality of the image during the download process (hence reducing the file size). This is for the thumbnail image only - whatever you do, don't do this with your blog photos, you want them to be good quality!

Taking photographs

When taking photographs, try and take them in natural daylight, adding additional bright white lighting if necessary. I know this is not always possible but it makes a huge difference - for an example, if you look back through my blog you will see a period of time where I couldn't take photos during daylight hours. It makes me sad when I see these old posts as I know I didn't showcase my work in the best possible way. 

Photography backgrounds

There are so many styles of photographs you can use for your social media posts. I predominantly take flat lays (an image shot from directly above) and alternate my backgrounds, sometimes using a wallpaper background with a brick pattern and more recently, using backdrops I've purchased with a wood or concrete effect. You don't have to purchase a background to get a great results, most stores that sell wallpaper will allow you to take a sample, free and simple! Also, think about your furniture or flooring, you may have a great background available already! 

Products or props?

Consider whether you want to add products or props to your photographs - this can add lots of interest to the images you share online. I went through a phase many years ago when I added products to my flat lay photos but have chosen not to do this anymore as the primary reason to share my creativity is sharing my creativity, not sales. Recently I have added props to my Instagram photos, mainly decorative items and artificial plants from my house (I can't have real plants as my cats see them as food). I like to provide a different images of my projects on Instagram compared to my blog. I was fed up of seeing the same image on every platform so I am trying something new. 


If you are not taking a flat lay photo, think about what you can see in the background of your photograph. Have a quick tidy up, or blur the background. You don't want anything to distract anyone from the project. A few extra minutes spent on your photographs will be worthwhile. 


What I think is most important is consistency, you want people to recognise your brand and your creations through your photographs - I'm sure you know straight away when your favourite papercrafters photos pop up on Instagram or Pinterest. So pick a style (or two) and run with it for a while. 
Be you!

Also, remember to be you! It is perfectly okay to draw inspiration from others but it is also absolutely fine to be an individual and do something that works for you. I think as long as you spend a few minutes extra taking your photographs, it will always be worth it. Tidy that desk, don't take them when the light is bad and make sure you take lots of photos so you have choice, just in case!