Waterfall cards also known as pull tab cards are fun interactive cards that you can use for any occasion.
I actually only recently discovered waterfall cards. I think I came across a tutorial on Pinterest and was immediately intrigued.
At first, I thought it was super complicated but then upon further research, it actually turned out to be quite simple.
These are also known as pull and reveal cards but those usually have an additional hidden message in the part that pulls out. While you can easily add that to the base card I have in this tutorial, I’m going to save that message embellishment for another tutorial.
For now, here in this tutorial, I will explain the basics of how to construct a waterfall card. Once you understand the basics, there are many ways you can accessorize and customize your card.
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Materials for Waterfall Card
Cardstock – I like using medium-weight cardstock for this project. It flexes a little bit easier. Here are some of my favorite brands:
- Assorted Starter Pack – Basic assorted colors, great starter pack, perfect weight for most papercraft projects
- Cricut Joy Insert Card Packs – You don’t have to use these with the Cricut Joy, they are nice material kids for cardmaking.
- Cardstock Warehouse Brand on Amazon – I love the quality of all the matte-colored cardstock with Cardstock Warehouse. It is my go-to brand for individual matte colors that I might need
- Poptone Assorted Variety Pack – This is the perfect peppy assortment of colors of heavy cardstock. It’s a heavy cardstock assortment with colors I actually use frequently for cardmaking.
- Seasonal Assorted Variety Pack – This is a slight variation on the Poptone assortment and has a quite few neutrals that complement almost any accent color.
- Stardream Metallics Line – For paper crafts, the Stardream line is the go-to for a metallic shimmer finish. It is the perfect sheen to make any project pop. The core is also colored is which hard to find for metallic paper.
Glue – I have a few favorite glues and adhesives for cardmaking. I like glues that don’t warp the paper:
String or ribbon – you don’t need a lot, just a 4 inch strip is enough to attach to the bottom tab for pulling.
Template – Both the basic pull tab card template and the ice cream cone waterfall card template are available in both SVG and printable PDF formats for free in my resource library.
Tutorial for making waterfall cards
Step 1: Cut out all the different pieces using the template
Step 2: Mark the pull tab strip
The easiest way to do this is to slip the center pull tap into the cutout base and align the bottom of the tab with the bottom of the panel.
Then align the top of pull-down strip to the base of the cutout strip.
Step 3: Fold the pull out strip
Once that initial crease is created, you can take the pull out strip and mark the subsequent folds with a ruler. The first crease is the base crease, I find a 1cm increment above that base crease works best.
Make as many folds as the number of tabs you want to attach.
Fold the strip over in the same direction.
Step 4: Glue the top of the tab back onto the holder panel
Slip this folded center pull strip back in the holder panel and glue the top of the tab onto the holding strip of the panel.
Step 5: Attach the top tabs accessories
Apply a few dots of glue to each folded strip\. Start with the bottom most tab and glue the tab (heart in this example) and work your way up.
Step 6: Glue the assembled holder panel to a card base.
I like to center this piece but how you position the final assembly is up to you.
The last step is to just add the ribbon or string for a pull tab.
You can also add any sentiments as appropriate to the card. I also included an ice cream cone design in the example templates.
This base template can be customized in many different ways. I’ve also included this cute waterfall ice cream cone template in my free resource library.
How to assemble the pull tab card
First, cut out all the pieces for your card. I like to use a combination of light grip and standard grip mats for this. The more intricate pieces I use the stickier mat. The less intricate pieces, I just use the light grip so it is easier to get off the mat.
I’m not a big fan of using the scoring tool with the Cricut so I like to score by hand. Regardless, score and fold the base pull tab card shell.
Then glue the slide tabs closed.
Insert the slider sheet so you can position any overlay pieces as necessary in position. For example, in this race card card, I have to add a inside track to the slider sheet. I insert the slider in to position the tract correctly before gluing it down.
Assemble all the decorative pieces on top.
Next, we need to add the car to the slider tab. The easiest way to do this is to use a piece of foam tape. I find foam tape has the perfect depth so that it floats enough to slide easily but doesn’t protrude so much from the base card.
That’s it! It’s actually quite straightforward. You can always add a customized sentiment for the occasion. You can also use the base card template to make your own themed pull tab cards on top.