Your Step-by-Step Guide to Creating and Mailing Christmas Cards
The delicious ThanksGiving food has settled down. What a fun weekend it was to spend with Family. Now onto the next task…. Your Holiday Cards!
You have frantically looked for a photographer for a last minute Holiday Photoshoot… but unfortunately it's too late! Everyone is booked. Fall is the busiest time for photographers and most get booked months in advance. Make a mental note to book your Holiday Pictures in July next year.
For this year….. Worry not!
I will help you create your Holiday Cards without a professional photographer.
When is the right time to take pictures for Christmas Cards?
Well, there is no right or wrong answer to this!
Most people will take their Christmas Cards photos in Fall.
The colors are vibrant, it's the sweater-weather so you won't be hot during your photoshoot and the sun is finally setting at a manageable hour.
So to answer your question, you would want to take your Holiday Card pictures in fall, at sunset.
Sunset is the best time to take pictures, the light is beautiful and everything looks gorgeous and magical.
What locations are good for Family Photos?
Any outdoor location that has beautiful Fall colors is the best place to take Family pictures for Holiday Cards.
Think about your local parks or nature preserves. Your backyard can be a pretty good place to take pictures too.
And if you are in the Bay Area, I have compiled a list of my favorite places to Find Fall Colors in the Bay Area.
What should everyone wear?
Before I answer this question, let me just address what you should not wear… Matching Outfits. The days of white shirts and blue jeans for the entire family are over. Don’t match your outfits, co-ordinate.
Here’s my guide to What to wear for a Family Photoshoot. Hope this will help you pick out outfits for your family.
How can I DIY my pictures for Christmas Cards?
This is my favorite part… helping you DIY your family pictures!
Yes it might seem daunting… but I have broken down all the steps in the Guide to DIY your Fall Family Photoshoot.
Get your guide, spend 10-15 minutes figuring out all the steps and viola… you would have found a family photographer in you!
How do I edit my pictures for Christmas Cards?
Most professionals use Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop to edit their pictures. I know learning a whole new software can seem daunting.
You can edit your pictures really well using the inbuilt app on your phone too.
Also Google Photos have pretty amazing photo editor that you can use to blur the background or delete unwanted people from your pictures.
You will be amazed to see how much editing you can do using your phone.
When should I order my Christmas Cards?
Most labs get pretty busy in the Holiday season, try to order your pictures no later than the first week of December.
Some labs display their timeline on their websites too. Look for any restrictions they might have, like the last day to order to get your pictures in time for Holidays.
Where can I print my Holiday cards?
There are a wide variety of options that you can choose to print your Holiday Cards.
There’s Walgreens, you might be able to pick your Holiday Cards within a day or two, it wouldn’t be of the highest quality.
The number two option is Shutterfly. Reasonable quality and price but nothing out of ordinary. You might be able to use some Holiday Discounts too if you sign up to be a subscriber.
My favorite is Mpix. Definitely pricier than Walgreens and Shutterfly, but you will love how beautiful your cards will turn out!
How many pictures to put on the Holiday Card?
When it comes to pictures on Holiday Cards, less is more! I would say just go with their predefined Holiday templates and pick at most 4 pictures. You do not want to crowd your holiday cards with too many pictures.
I personally love to send out Holiday Cards with just one picture. It takes up the whole space and you can actually see everyone’s faces and appreciate how grown the kids look!
Should I choose Glossy or Matte for my Christmas Cards?
Again, no right or wrong answer here!
You can’t go wrong with either choice.
My personal favorite is matte look.
My mom had this old picture of her and me in a park during sunset. It was a very matted image and I loved how nostalgic it looked.
So I just go with matte look.
But like I said, there is no wrong answer, pick what you love.
Should I include a personal note on my Holiday Cards?
There is nothing more heartwarming than a personal note on the Holiday Card.
Tell them something about yourself or your family.
Your life in the past year, any new additions in the family, any trips you took etc.
Wish them well and end with a warm note.
When should I send out my Christmas Cards?
The one time in the year when the post office is understaffed is the Holiday time. To make sure your Holiday Cards reach your family and friends on time, send them out within the second week of December.
Any later than that, you risk your cards being delayed.
I hope this guide answered all your questions related to your Holiday Cards.