If you’re either a millennial card collector or just a newcomer to this industry, the number one thing that every collector must bear in mind is: Protect your cards at all cost!!
It’s no doubt a must that even if you’re a card collector, or a TCG player, keeping the set clean and undamaged is extremely important. Untouched, fully protected, and good-looking are somewhat the priorities when it comes to ensuring the safety of your decks and customizing them.
Especially when you’re a TCG Player, you certainly want to stand out from the rest whenever you’re a part of a major tournament, or even less, some locally established leagues in the neighborhood. The same thing goes for a card collector. Showing other collectors your unique look of decks emphasizes the high level of professionals, which in most cases, a powerful tool to upgrade your legitimacy in the market and gain higher popularity in this high-demand industry.
Yet owning cool card sleeves sounds good enough, but what about making your own custom card sleeves? Doesn’t it sound even cooler to the ears? I bet it does. The table has turned!!! Let’s get right into a couple of simple steps of “How to make your custom cards sleeves” with your own idea, in your own way.
The Preparation Processes
It might be a bit fussy at first. Therefore, I am here with you to answer all the questions related to such. You might be wondering: What sort of materials do I have to prepare for my own custom card sleeves? Do I need to buy the most expensive stationery out there to make sure the cards are well-protected?
There are a great variety of materials that different people use for different purposes. Some just really have a lot of money so they decide to buy all the high-quality materials at the most expensive shop. But what if you’re just a card collector on a budget? Then these are the stuff you need to get the work done. These items are almost everywhere and extremely common so you don’t have to worry about not finding them:
- Ziplock bags
- A big piece of paper
- Clear tape
- A whiteboard marker
- A pen
- A pencil
- And lastly, a card that needs to be sleeved.
Now For The Fun Part: Let’s Dig Into Making The Sleeves For Your Card!!!
Step 1: The first thing you need to do is to put your favorite card into the far left or right corner of the Ziplock bags. Make sure you measure the right card position inside the plastic bag because you won’t want to get rid of many bags for one card since there are other cards that are waiting to be sleeved as well.
Step 2: Use your whiteboard marker to make a trace around the card onto the plastic bag. This step is quite simple, so don’t be too stressed out about it.
Step 3: Here comes the real challenge that you certainly have to be extremely careful: Use the pair of scissors that you prepared and cut around the marker trace that you just made for the card. You definitely don’t want to cut too close to the card as you might accidentally create a small cut to it, and of course, no one would ever want their card to be ruined in such a way. Therefore, my suggestion is to cut approximately away from the marker trace. Also, using scissors to cut off plastic is a challenging step, so make sure you do it slowly and carefully to avoid pulling harm onto your card.
Step 4: Another step using a cutting item: This time, use the ruler to flatten the plastic, then take out your scissors, cut the extra plastic around the card to turn your sleeve into its correct shape.
Step 5: Stick the open part of the plastic sleeve using clear tape to match the color. The same carefulness should also be taken during this stage since sticking stuff can be annoying at times.
It’s Time To Decorate!!!
Finally, all the tough steps have finally gone. Now it’s time for some fun customizing, letting your creativity expand.
This one is quite simple, all you need to do is lay the card on the piece of paper you prepared, then use either your pencil or pen to perform a trace around the card. After that, cut out the card-shaped frame by using either your scissors, depending on which one you feel the most comfortable. After finishing all the cutting, you can freely draw whatever you want on it. In my case, I would choose to draw my favorite Pokemon if I’m making card sleeves for my favorite Pokemon cards.
I also own some very unique paintings that don’t relate to the cards at all, but it helps the cards stand out from the rest of the sets that I own. So, painting is usually the most fun part that I enjoy the most. There were times I would bring along my cards everywhere with a bunch of paper so that I can draw whatever I like during free time at school, and have them all prepared so I could spend more time on the cut-and-stick process.
The steps above are pretty easy from my point of view, everybody can do the same at home just by following these instructions. However, cut-and-stick is a hard task to manage, it takes a long time to practice before you can make good-looking custom card sleeves for your Yu-Gi-Oh or Pokemon set.
However, the most important thing during this is the joy of making it. It shows how much you’re passionate about card collecting. If you, however, do not have the time or resources to create hand-made custom card sleeves, the next best and easiest way to have them custom-made. At the end of the day taking care of them and giving them your massive creativity are some of the things that every deck deserves.