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Easy DIY Scratch Off Cards (Free Printables)

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With Valentine’s Day around the corner, why not surprise your loved one with the most unique card ever? I’ll show you how to make scratch off cards with free printables to get you started.

Two Valentine's Day scratch off cards with gnome and rainbow themes showing penny that scratched off a sticker to reveal a donut treat

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Tutorial: How to Make Scratch-Off Cards

Making DIY scratch off cards is easier than you think! You probably own some of the supplies you’ll need already. Plus, I’m giving you free printable cards, which you’ll find below.

Step 1: Print and cut your design on cardstock

When printing your design, make sure you choose the highest-quality print settings. On my Epson inkjet printer, I select “Best” under the “Media & Quality” menu.

I’ve designed these Valentine’s Day printables with two cards per sheet, and each card measures about 7×5 inches. A paper trimmer comes in handy to cut the cards down to size. Scissors will work perfectly fine as well.

Feel free to create your own card designs with cardstock or construction paper and markers. You’ll still follow the same steps below. I do recommend using sturdy cardstock for the actual scratch-off stickers.

Step 2: Cut scratch-off sticker shapes

On cardstock, cut out four scratch-off shapes. (Each card will fit two scratch-off stickers.)

Cutting hearts out of cardstock to create scratch off stickers
Tracing shapes on cardstock

I created heart-shaped scratch off stickers, but you could also use squares. Since I had some foam hearts handy, I used those as a template to draw my shapes. Each heart was about 1.5×1.5 inches.

You can freehand some hearts and call it a day, too.

Step 3: Write your scratch-off hidden message

Since I made these Valentine’s Day cards for my twin boys, I included some of their favorite treats on my scratch-off stickers, like a Sonic drink and donuts.

Drawing names of treats on heart-shaped scratch off stickers
Writing messages on scratch-off cards

Depending on your recipient, you can personalize your cards any reward like a car wash, free massage, date night, favorite meal, Starbucks treat, or breakfast in bed.

(I’m wishing someone would make me a scratch-off card with all of the above!)

Step 4: Seal the scratch-off tickets with tape

Once you’ve written your treats on the stickers, “laminate” both sides of the shapes using packing tape.

Start by cutting a strip of tape 2.5 times as long as your shapes. Then, place your shapes on one half of the sticky side, and fold the other half over to cover both sides.

Covering scratch off stickers with duck tape to make them slick
Scratch off shapes after sealing with duck tape

If you have a laminating machine or self-laminating sheets, you could also seal a few shapes at once.

After the stickers have their shiny coating, you can cut them into individual shapes or complete Step 5 before cutting them. In hindsight, I wish I had painted the strips of tape before cutting out the hearts.

Step 5: Paint the scratch-off stickers

Combine two parts of acrylic paint with one part of dish soap to create your magic scratch-off paint mixture. Then use a foam paintbrush to apply 3-4 coats of paint on your scratch-off areas.

Wait for the paint to completely dry in between coats (about 30-40 minutes). I used a small disposable cup to mix the paint and then covered it with plastic in between coats. This prevents the paint from drying out.

Painting scratch off stickers with metallic paint
Scratch-off shapes with one coat of paint

I chose a silver metallic color for my paint, but you could also use gold, copper, or any other paint with a glossy sheen.

Step 6: Attach the scratch-off stickers to the cards

Once your stickers are completely opaque and you can’t read the surprise underneath, it’s time to attach them!

Attaching scratch off stickers to printable card
Attaching scratch-off stickers to the card

I love using a double-sided roller for card-making projects like this. The glue has a permanent bond, so the sticker won’t fall off when someone scratches it. Just place a small dab on the back of your painted stickers to attach them to the cards.

How to Use Scratch-off Cards

To use your awesome scratch-off cards, take a coin or credit card and scrape the paint off. As a thoughtful touch, you can also include a coin with the card. (I think a coin would look adorable in the hands of one of these gnomes.)

Removing paint from scratch off card with a penny
Scratching off paint from scratch-off card

That’s it! Your gift recipient will be so thrilled to find the surprises waiting for them. Wouldn’t these be so cute for a birthday card too?

Download Free Printable Valentine’s Day Cards

I created these cards using my collection of free Valentine’s Day fonts and graphics from Creative Fabrica (my favorite place for free art and SVG files). One card design features a rainbow and the phrase “You are my sunshine.” The other has three Valentine’s Day gnomes with the phrase “I love you like gnome other.”

Sign up below to become a VIP member and receive this free download. All files are for personal use only. To view the document, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, which you can download for free here.

I hope you enjoy printing your DIY scratch-off cards at home for your special valentine!

First Day of Home signature

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Two scratch off cards showing one sticker revealed with copper penny. Text overlay reads "DIY Scratch Off Cards Free Printable"

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  1. I saw these on Facebook and had to pop over to see how you did this and pin it. Amazing!!!!! These are a perfect example of I wish I had thought of it.

    1. Hi Leanna! Thanks so much for the sweet comment! I’m so glad you liked it. It was really fun to put these together. I appreciate you stopping by to say hello. Happy Valentine’s Day!

  2. These are so cool, Crissy!!! Great for any occasion!! It takes the old ‘coupon’ in the card to a whole ‘nother level!! Love it!

    1. Thanks so much, DeeDee! That’s so sweet of you to stop by. My boys loved these cards. It’s a shame the surprise was a bit spoiled because they were snooping around the craft room. Ha! I hope you give the cards a try. Hugs!