Nothing says Christmas like a greetings card that’s customized to represent you and your family. So rather than buying a generic batch for your festive correspondence this year, why not create your own instead?
You can do this with relative ease thanks to modern tech, but there are still pitfalls to avoid and steps to take to get the best results, so stick with us as we talk you through all your options.
Capture the ideal Christmassy image
First up, you need to set up a bit of a photo shoot for your family. You could pay a professional photographer to do the honors, of course, but if you’ve got a modern smartphone then it’s entirely possible to take high quality snaps at home.
Obviously it’s a good idea to encourage family members to put on their glad rags for the photo, and if you’re a festive sweater kind of family, and you follow Christmas fashion trends, this can make the results fun rather than overly formal.
You also need to think about your backdrop and the lighting. Taking a snap outdoors on a bright day solves both these issues, so pick a picturesque nature spot nearby and use it to your advantage. If you’re committed to shooting indoors, make sure everyone is well lit and carefully positioned in frame.
Try out your photos in different templates online
Online template tools let you create Christmas photo cards which are enhanced with festive cheer thanks to digitally-applied effects.
From spangly, star-studded borders to photo collages rimmed with holy and ivy, there are a heap of different designs to choose between.
Better yet, you don’t even need to stick with just one of the photos you take, as templates that allow for several different snaps to be used side by side are commonplace.
Pick a message to send to loved ones
Writing Christmas cards individually for all the important people in your life can take a lot of time, and so plenty of people choose to stick with a standard message that’s consistent across all their cards, then add a shorter personalized passage to speed things up as the festive period approaches.
You could keep the well-wishing short and sweet, or you could go the whole hog and include a summary of what your family has been up to in the past year. However you handle this, be sure that it’s appropriate for everyone who’s going to receive a card.
Get input from the whole family
Your idea of the perfect family Christmas card might not mesh with what your partner or kids think, so don’t just treat this as a pet project which no one else is allowed to get involved with, or it could cause consternation.
It’s better to talk with the rest of your household about what you want the card to look like and what message it should contain. That way, everyone will feel invested in making it as good as possible, because they’ll have made a direct contribution.
Obviously this means being willing to make compromises, but then that’s what being part of a family is all about in the first place.
Prepare all of this well in advance
Last of all, remember that Christmas comes around quicker than you’d think, and you can’t really afford to leave the creation of the perfect family Christmas card to the last minute.
There’s no harm in preparing your card design months in advance, so that you’ve got leeway to print them up and prepare everything for postage, rather than being pushed for time when autumn gives way to winter.