It’s mid-October and you know what that means, right? It’s time to start thinking about Christmas cards! I know, I might be crazy to start planning this early but the joy of giving and receiving cards each year is almost usurped by the joy I get from mocking up 50+ different versions on Tiny Prints. I always overwhelm myself with all the choices…but truth be told, I love it. Trying different photos, changing font colors and text, and all within a super user-friendly format? It’s enough to make me start singing “It’s the MOST wonderful time of the year!”
If you’re one of those people who doesn’t love being overwhelmed by all those choices (816 different photo cards!), this post will help you navigate the Tiny Prints site, edit down the choices, and create a card that’s true to your style. (And if you win my giveaway–see below–Tiny Prints will give you $50 to get started.)
Before we look at this year’s contenders, let’s get inspired by my cards of the past.
I tend to pick a folded card each year so I can put one great picture on the front and then several pics from the year inside. In 2009, I knew I wanted to use the pink polka dot shirt picture on the front and I was very lucky to find a card that had a pink and green design. I loaded the inside with candids from throughout the year and then the back always gets a silly pic – like this trick-or-treating one.
Sue at Home Card-picking Tip: If you’re looking for a specific color based on the clothes or background in your photo, you can search by that shade with this handy tool on the left side of the Tiny Prints page.
I remember feeling torn that year because I thought I should use a more posed picture on the front and at the last minute, I decided to go with my gut and use my favorite photo of the year: the candid that I’ve talked about on this blog too often to count. It still brings a smile to my face.
Sue at Home Card-picking Tip: Don’t forget about that useful real estate on the back. Since we closed on our new house just days before Christmas, I used the back of the card as a moving announcement.
I remember taking my (very patient) girls out on a beautiful fall day and snapping about 700 frames. I kid you not. Tons were deleted before they were even downloaded but sometimes it takes a marathon shoot like that to get one good picture.
Sue at Home Card-picking Tip: Once you’ve selected the picture you want to use, look where the “dead space” is. In this photo, it was on the bottom left so I looked for card designs that had some text in that space.
Now that we’ve had a trip down memory lane, let’s look at some of the contenders for this year. I’m going to stick with what has worked in the past so on the Tiny Prints site I’ll select “1” under Number of Photos and “Folded” under Card Formats.
Sue at Home Card-picking Tip: In the field for Number of Photos, they’re referring to the front of the card only. You can select 1 there–like I do–and still plaster the inside with pics of your little darlings.
Now that I’ve got it edited down from 816 potential cards to 173 potential cards, I scroll through and “favorite” the ones that I like. Also, be sure to hover over the different color blocks to see the different color options. It might make you love a card that you were just meh about.
Now, I’ve got it down to 22 styles which is much more manageable. And then the fun begins! Pick one you want to personalize and get to work. Upload some photos (from your computer, Flickr, Facebook, Shutterfly, or pretty much wherever you keep your pics) and start playing with the layouts. You can just let the program plug your info into the layout or you can get crazy with customizing (new fonts, colored text, or other layouts). It all depends on what you want and how comfortable you are with getting creative.
I’m pretty sure that I want to use this picture of the girls that I took ON MY PHONE! I know that’s crazy to think that I have a pretty decent digital SLR camera and I want to put a phone pic on my Christmas card but this picture really says who the girls are this year. They’re fun, silly, stylish, and confident. Lily can’t wait to be a big girl like her sister–and she’s already testing out the attitude. Sophia is a total contradiction – messy hair and a killer outfit. And so, I found some cards that the picture would fit in and gave it a try. (Pay attention because I’m going to ask you to vote!)
Option 1: Bright Ballad
Option 2: Delightful Diagonals
Option 3: Be Shiny
Option 4: Candy Cane Square
As for the inside, it’ll probably be some kind of collage of pictures. Something like this though I need to edit and brighten some of the pictures (this is the inside of Delightful Diagonals style shown above as option two):
Or, if I did the Candy Cane Square I could fit 9 pics inside, like this:
Then I started thinking that some of my favorite pictures from the year were on Instagram and I started to wonder what using all Instagram pics might look like. I instagrammed a few of my better pics too so I that I had a decent mix. I’m kinda digging it. Are you?
I’m still on the fence about which style I should choose and I could use your help. Let me know in the comments below which style you like the best and one of you will win a $50 gift card to Tiny Prints! That’s right! A big fat giveaway!!!
Prize: $50 off your order at tinyprints.com (does not include shipping & cannot be combined with any other promos)
How to enter: Leave a comment below telling me which style you like best of the ones pictured above: Bright Ballad, Delightful Diagonals, Be Shiny or Candy Cane Square.
Giveaway closes: October 29th at 9 pm
Number of Winners: One
One entry per email address permitted. Winner will be chosen at random using random.org. Winner will be posted on Sue at Home.
Please use this link (Holiday Cards) to click on over to Tiny Prints to view their photo holiday cards for yourself! And don’t forget to check out Tiny Prints Special Offers page for great deals. Good luck!
Sue at Home
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Tiny Prints but as you can see by my cards from the last three years, I really do love Tiny Prints and I would never promote a company on Sue at Home that I wouldn’t recommend to a friend.