How To: Make a Textured Business Card
These business cards are pleasing to the touch — as well as the eye.

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Textured business cards stand apart from traditional finishes. They’re so pleasing to the eye that people can’t wait to get their hands on them — literally. While appealing to our basic senses, textured business cards can also be very expensive to make.

To get the same visual effect without going broke, you can trick the eye with a simple, effective method. Here are 5 steps that’ll teach you how to make your own textured business card in Microsoft Word.

Step 1. Set Up Your Document

The most common size for business cards is 3.5” x 2”, so I’m using these dimensions in the tutorial. You should also add a 0.125” bleed to each side of the card. Bleeds extend the printed area and prevent blank borders from appearing on the final card. Even though it’s not necessary for this tutorial, it’s definitely needed if you’re making a business card with background graphics.

After you create a document, you can use guides to define the bleeds and also set inner margins to determine a safe area where your main graphics and text can be placed. Calculate at least 0.125” for the inner margins for each border.

How to Make a Textured Business Card 1

Step 2. Select a Texture

Choose a texture with very physical characteristics (almost palpable in appearance), such as crumpled paper, concrete, rough fabric, wood, or metal. Go for something that will match the style of the card as you envisioned it. And, of course, keep it pertinent to your business and specialty. In this tutorial, I’m using a paper texture by Lost & Taken. I opened and set it as the background image to my card document.

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Step 3. Add Other Design Elements

After placing the background, add other graphics to embellish the card and make it more interesting. If you have your own logo, find a spot for it where it will be noticed right away.
By adding embossing and drop shadow with layer styles, you can imitate a letterpress effect to enhance the graphics above the texture. This works very well with some types of textures, as it gives the card a very elegant, classic look. The same effect can be applied to the text to create a coherent theme.

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Step 4. Add Details to the Business Card

Textured or not, a business card is still a business card, and you need to fill it with your personal details like name, contact information (email, phone number, website, but only if it’s related to your job), and a brief overview of your area of expertise.

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Step 5. Create the Back Side

For the back portion of the card, create a new document with the same specs as the front. Even if you use slightly different graphics for the back of the card, don’t alter the overall style. Use the space on the back for the details you couldn’t fit on the front. Depending on your requirements, you can use the back as a canvas to reveal your clients more about yourself.

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After you complete all 5 steps, your design should look similar to the finished product below:

How to Make a Textured Business Card 6

Make Business Card Recipients Feel Your Message

Even though card stock, special materials, and quality online printers can be hard to find when you’re on a budget, you can still produce beautiful textured cards with the help of a little creativity. Make sure you follow each step, then you’ll have yourself an awesome, textured business card to hand out!

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About the Author
Kenny Austin is an expert of print quality and accuracy, product analysis, and print production processes.
Kenny and the team order print jobs from every major printer to test quality, value, customer service, and more. See their reviews here:

6 Comments

  1. just designed a new set of cards, planning on printing them on plastic! thanks for the tips!

  2. so,if i do decide to do something crazy like cardboard cards or something, what is the best material to use?

    • Kenny Austin
      Kevin Austin (Printaholic.com)

      The best material is really dependent on what you want, as I don’t think there is a best alternate material. Clear, plastic cards are popular, as is cardboard, but if you are going for creativity, then any material will be great.

  3. one time i ordered some cards that looked great in my design and bright and clear on the computer, but when i received them. I want to create some cardboard cards, but i am worried that the cards will come out the same as last time.

    • Kenny Austin
      Kevin Austin (Printaholic.com)

      Waters, that happens more than you think. The best solution is to read the printers requirements and get in communication with them before handing over your files. That way, you will get the colors, fonts, and everything else exactly to how you want it for a better end result. Don’t be afraid!