If you haven’t produced your own Christmas cards yet, now is the time to do it.
To produce a poor card is easy. Write your Christmas message in Word. Cut and paste a picture, add some word art text for ‘Happy Christmas’ and print your cards on your inkjet or colour laser printer on 160gsm plain paper from Staples or whoever. The quality of the output – especially the photo – will be acceptable; it will be clear that it is your own production, and the recipient will know that you spent some time thinking of them. And it will be cheap and look cheap. So is it giving a good impression of you – the serious photographer?
Do it better using Innova Greeting Cards
First think about the Recipients
Usually our lives revolve round groups with shared interests – family, church, clubs, local interests, business contacts – and then the rest – friends, tradespeople, neighbours etc. Decide – are we going to have several versions – no problem if you produce your own.
Choose the Right Photo
Your card reflects you. For many recipients – but not all – your family is a good starting point – perhaps a winter highlight (last year!) or a family event. The only contact many old friends, even some relatives, have with you is the annual Christmas card. The recipient will see that 6-year-old child they remember now graduating from university or getting married. However, with old colleagues or business associates the relationship is more individual. They are not interested in your grandchildren, but you doing a parachute jump – that would be something!
Get the Messages Right
Have several versions. Be interesting and not too long. Don’t bore people with too much family stuff. Anecdotes and even controversial views, preselected without offence, will show your values – and ‘you’. As most will know I am an evangelical Christian and am not hesitant to talk about Jesus – sensitively.
The design is personal. A scrapbook-like approach festooned with balloons would never reflect me, but it might be suitable for a 20 year old young lady. For me it is the photo with enhanced HDR. I use Perfect Photo/Perfect Effects as well as Photoshop.
One would think that with a vested interest in print-your-own supplies I would never advocate having a lab-printed card. But if you have to produce 500 identical cards, it could be the most practical – and probably least expensive option. But it is clearly a factory product – on factory paper. Special people need something special.
And how many of us need 500 identical cards? Most of us have more than one printer now – a compact colour laser, and a high quality inkjet. We can vary the type of card according to the audience.
So what consumables
For laser it is easy – a heavy weight paper 160gsm, A4 (fold to A5) and standard C5 envelopes. Why pay for more?
For high quality inkjet you need something special. That is why Innova have produced a very nice high quality archival photo matte cards on 220gsm paper to produce something special. Expensive? No! A card-and-envelope set costs from under 31p (plus VAT), less with a larger ink/paper order. Allow another 5p for ink (from Incartek of course), and we have a high quality art card for just over 36p. Compare that with a purchased card for £2 or more.
Click here for 100 Innova Greeting Cards with envelopes, from Incartek:
- Larger Size (approx. 5½ x 7½ ins) £44.10 /100 inc VAT
- Smaller Size (approx. 4½ x 6 ins) £36.90 /100 inc VAT
But Remember ..
There must be something personal with the card. Otherwise, to be frank, you might as well send an e-card. Are you a friend I remember – or somebody on the list we send to because they send to us. People are real. A little handwritten note on the card. “How’s Jim getting on at school?”, “How did the operation go?”. Maybe that will re-engage them – by letter, e-mail or even Facebook.
God bless – and I hope you have a good run up to Christmas in business or at home.