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Making Holiday Cards: All You Need is a Little Time, Creativity and a Good Printer

Epson, Inkjet Printable Media, Special EventsNancy Woo08 December 2011

It’s the season for spreading good cheer and reconnecting with distant friends or relatives who are undoubtedly leading their own busy lives, as you are. December is the unanimously agreed upon month for taking a little extra time for remembering those people in your life who you value, but don’t get to see nearly enough.

The simplest and easiest way to send a little warmth is through the mail with a holiday card, and the most cherished ones are those that are sealed with a little personalization. There are a few options for making your own holiday cards. You can visit websites that offer the service for a minimal charge, give them a nice photo, choose a design, and have them print and send them for you. For the on-the-go person, this might be the best way to go, especially if you plan on sending a lot of cards to a lot of places.

But if you’ve got a little extra time on your hands, a little bit of tech-savviness and a good printer, it’s simple and easy to just make your holiday cards at home. This is a great way not only to save money and insert that extra personal touch, but it’s also a great wintry activity that you can do with your family. With a little creativity, a few good photos and a little time in the evenings, making holiday cards doesn’t have to be a chore. In front of a fire with a hot cup of tea, it can be a pleasant craft.

Here’s what you’ll need to consider for the holiday card making craft:

•    How many people are you making for? Making a list is a good way to start.
•    Are you going to duplicate one design or personalize each one? This is helpful for determining how much time will go into the project.
•    Does your printer have full black and color ink?
•    Do you have the paper you’ll want to use?
•    Do you have cardmaking software or are you going to use a program like Word?
•    How big will the card be?
•    Do you have envelopes that will fit them, or can you make them?

What you’ll need:

1.    Preferably an Inkjet printer. Epson carries a few top-of-the-line color Inkjet printers that print fast, high quality materials. This is where the card will either make it or break it, because using a low-quality printer or paper may just make it look like a kid’s art project. Using crisp, clean printer technology will result in professional-looking holiday cards.
2.    Black and color ink cartridges.
3.    High quality paper in bulk, like photo paper, glossy paper or card stock.
4.    Photos or artwork on the computer.

Simple steps:

1.    Find photos either of your family, you or you and the recipient.
2.    Using Photoshop, Word, cardmaking software or pre-made designs, craft a cover design. This can be as simple as a photo with a fun border or clip art arranged in an appealing way, or as complex as inserting multiple photos in a clever design, like encircling three photos in Christmas tree ornaments. This is where creativity and a little tech know-how can allow you to really make something special.
3.    Determine which way the cover will go. The easiest way to print is probably by folding a regular 8 ½” by 11” paper down the middle, hamburger style, so that you print the picture in the bottom half of the white space in vertical orientation, then just fold it over. To print a message inside the card, just flip the paper around upside down and repeat.
4.    Write a personal message inside the card, and sign.
5.    Either create your own envelopes with programs on Microsoft Word, or buy custom envelopes to fit your cards.
6.    Address and send!

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