When it comes to holiday greeting cards, individuality is in.
And with the popularity of online design sites like Etsy and Fiverr as well as experienced local graphic designers like those at Hilburn Printing, personalizing your greeting cards is easier than ever.
“Personalizing a holiday greeting card usually starts with the photograph,” says Christy Johnson, manager of Hilburn Printing. “A high-quality photograph is the foundation for a memorable greeting card.”
Top Tips for a Great Photo
• Make sure there is sufficient light when taking the photo. Dark photos print even darker. For photos taken outdoors, time your photo session between 10:00AM-12:00PM and 5:00PM-7:00PM for the best lighting.
• “For us to produce the highest quality card, we need the photo in the size the customer wants it printed and at least 300 dpi,” says Christy. “Quality decreases when customers bring us a small photograph and ask us to enlarge it.”
• If you want to use a scanned image for your Christmas card, let Hilburn scan the image for you. “Images have to be scanned at the highest quality,” says Christy. “We can get the highest quality for the customer by using our professional-grade scanner.”
• If sending your image in a digital file from a phone, make sure to send in ‘Actual Size’ in order to get the highest quality print.
• If you want your image in black and white, send it to the printer in color so that black levels can be professionally adjusted. “Sometimes we receive photographs that are too black and white with no gradients of gray,” says Christy. “You need the gray to provide contrast and help the photo pop.”
Top Tips for Design
Once you have that high-quality photograph, the next step in personalizing your greeting card is to ask your designer to tap into what’s hot in greeting card design for 2017.
• Hot colors for 2017 include: dark teal, navy blue, and cobalt blue paired with bright whites and gold or silver foil.
• Popular design trends include vintage looks and printing cards on Kraft paper. Some are even adding dimension to cards such as a button or a felt star.
• Also hot: black and white with splashes of color is a popular design trend. A graphic designer can take your black and white photo and add touches of color that highlight specific elements to give your card a contemporary look.
• Other popular trends include: dynamic hand lettering, watercolor textures, and foil stamping.
Top Tip for Planning
Of course, a personalized greeting card has the greatest impact if it arrives before the holiday – not after!
Most folks send their holiday greeting cards two weeks before Christmas, but it’s important to note that the holidays are the busiest season for the United States Postal Service.
The top tip for planning is to start early and send early. The more time you give your designer and printer to work their magic, the more likely you are to ensure your card’s arrival well before December 25th.
In fact, if you order early at Hilburn Printing, you can get a discount of up to 15% if you order by November 15; 10% if you order by December 1; and 5% if you order by December 5.
To get your holiday greeting card into production, give Hilburn Printing a call at 318. 868.8868.