How to Make your Holiday Cards Merry and Bright!


‘Tis the season to be jolly and to send out holiday cards to your friends and family!  As a photographer, I send out photo cards every year and I love receiving them as well (shocking, I know). To me, seeing all my friends and family and how they have grown and change each year is one of my holiday highlights!  I thought I would share with you 6 tips to add some twinkle and Christmas magic to your holiday cards this year!!!

1. Start With a Fabulous Portrait!

Of course a fabulous Christmas Card starts with a fabulous Portrait! (You knew I had to start the blog off with a little self promotion. But seriously … how adorable is this boy and his dog??)
Children's Christmas Portrait
Children's Christmas Portrait

2. Order Custom Holiday Cards

Did you know we create themed custom holiday cards every year to go with our cool custom sets? Our designer will take the portraits you choose and layout the card, then all you have to do is send it!  If you prefer to do the design work yourself there are some fabulous greeting card sites online to choose from. If that is the route you prefer, simply order your digital files from us and you will be on your way!

Photo Christmas Cards

3. Proper Punctuation

This is SOOOOO important and always a question from clients on how to pluralize their name for their holiday cards. This article How to make your last name plural on holiday cards and avoid apostrophe is a great resource of how to pluralize your name and why it’s done that way. 

4. The Art of Addressing your Cards

When you start making your list and checking it twice … the thought of addressing all your cards can be a little daunting. However, a beautiful envelope is the first impression of the person opening your card.

Addressing Christmas Cards 

A few addressing ideas:

1) Computer – Mail merge and print address labels or directly on the envelope. Not the prettiest but very efficient for large lists.
2) Cricut Cutter – If you are crafty and have one of these devices you can program it to do your addresses for you.
3) Handwrite – It gets tiring hand printing, but with a little pizazz you can really make these envelopes adorable. You can also hire someone to do that gorgeous calligraphy style addressing for you. In fact, this is a brand new service we are offering this year to our clients. Hannah (our own Lettering Fairy) can address your Holiday cards!!! For $2.00 per envelope she will turn your envelopes in to little works of art.

Watch our Lettering Fairy in Action!

Envelopes 2

5. Return Address

You can order some beautiful return address labels from multiple sites or print them yourself at home. You can also get a stamp and stamp the return address on each envelope.  If you are doing calligraphy addressed envelopes you can have the return address written in, but its entirely up to you and your creativity!!!

Santa Claus Envelope


6. Decorate The Envelope

Stamps for decorating the envelope – snowflakes, stars, little reindeer, Santa silhouette are all some cool ideas to add a little extra dazzle to the envelope itself. Wax seal to close envelope – this is old school but a very elegant touch to seal your envelope.
Wax Seal on Envelope

I guarantee everyone will be impressed with the extra touches you did to make this year’s holiday card extra special!!!

Last but not least … a few bonus tips on Prepping for the Holiday Photo

Kids will be kid’s so you can only do the best you can to set up for success for your holiday portrait. 

1) Pick out outfits ahead of time so they aren’t tantruming that morning about what they are wearing.

 2) Food. Make sure they are well fed and not thirsty. Bring drinks and snacks if you need to just in case!

3) Naps. If kids are little it is best to schedule your session around their nap time. Make sure the bigger kids gets a good nights rest the night before also.

4) Enjoy and embrace the madness. It is rare for kids to NOT have a breakdown during a photo shoot so don’t let it get to you. We are professionals and are used to working around it to try to get you the best photos possible. (Even if that means you dancing around being goofy or me kicking you out of the room… *wink wink*). Go with the flow because sometimes those crazy photos end up being the ones you remember the most.

For more tips on getting ready for a family photo shoot, check out my blog 5 PROBLEMS I OVERCAME TO CREATE OUR FIRST FAMILY PORTRAIT!



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Jeanine McLeod Professional PortraitJeanine McLeod is the owner of Cloud 9 Studios, a Florida based photography studio located just north of Tampa in Wesley Chapel. They specialize in family, children and baby photography and love helping families celebrate their love of family with fun, fresh and beautiful portraits.