Your friends, relatives and neighbors are eagerly looking forward to your annual Christmas photo cards. But how do you make this year's holiday card really fresh and original? Here are seven ideas to help you make your Christmas cards stand out.
1. Go black and white photo for a dramatic look. Many digital cameras have a setting that will enable you to take your photo in black and white. Or you can change a color snapshot to grayscale in your photo editing software. If you do not know how to do it yourself, most photo card companies can do it for you at no extra charge.
2. The more, the merrier. This year, include more than just the kids in your photo Christmas cards. Get in the picture with them! One year my uncle remarked that while he enjoyed receiving a photo of the kids every year, he would like to see a picture of us, too. So, gather the entire family, even the pets. And if you have an opportunity during the year to attend a large family get together with grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins, you might consider using a large group family photo.
3. Pack the Santa hat on vacation. Whether you're going to the beach, sightseeing in the city or pumpkin picking in the fall, bringing along a holiday prop or two, such as Christmas stocking or ornament. When you're taking photos of your family excursion, include a few with everyone holding or wearing the Christmas props for refreshingly different holiday photo.
4. Think personality. While you might enjoy a posed photo of your children all cleaned up, in nice clothes, with not even a hair out of place, it does not show off their real personalities. For more interesting photo Christmas cards, try taking some candid photos of your kids doing things they enjoy. Or pose them with props that reflect their interests or accomplishments.
5. Scrapbook a page. If you're creative, you can put together multiple cropped photos and your greeting on holiday background paper, then photograph or scan it to be used as your photo Christmas card. Since most photo card use 4 x 6 inch photos to produce your cards, trim a standard 12 x 12 inch scrapbooking page to 12 inches wide by 8 inches high as your background for your layout.
6. Embellish it. Even if you have already ordered standard photo Christmas cards, you might still be able to jazz them up a bit. Check out the scrapbooking aisles in your local craft store for tiny embellishments, such as bows, ribbons, and other holiday dimensional items. These are practically flat, since they are meant for a scrapbook page, so they will still fit into your envelope after you glue them on your cards.
7. Shop around. There are so many photo Christmas card companies on the internet that are offering unique, original, personalized designs. Some designs can even contain multiple photos, so you do not have to worry about getting that one perfect snapshot. Or they will put your photo into the shape of an ornament, tree, or other holiday symbol. Many companies will let you write your own message, so you have more choices and options. They come in all price ranges, so it pays to do some browsing.
So, do not be afraid to try something a little different with your photo Christmas cards this year. With a little imagination, your holiday photo cards will be really special.