DIY Christmas Cards

Last year we spent way more than we’d planned on our Christmas cards.  Granted, they were very cute – we used one of A’s sleepy newborn pictures and ordered a Peace, Love, Joy themed postcard from MyPublisher.com.  I was very happy with them.  But in the end they were much more costly than our budget should have allowed for.

This year we wanted to do something on the cheap, but keep with the personalized theme.  I got this idea from Pinterest (where else?) – using your little one’s footprint to create a fun character.  I wanted to go for a simple, rustic, organic look so I decided to go for the footprint Reindeer (if you’re on Pinterest, I’m sure you’ve seen lots of them).

I found these blank ivory cards at a craft store – I think they were only $10 or so:

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I then attempted to take A’s footprint.  The first time, I did it on my own.  NOT a good idea.  I hadn’t really thought it through, didn’t have any paper towels or washcloths nearby and put WAY too much paint on the platter.  DISASTER.  My husband, Keegan, came home just in time to find us both covered in brown acrylic paint (he thought it was something else. Imagine his relief!), which unfortunately didn’t wash out all of our clothes.

Lesson learned.  The second time Keegan helped me and we go this PERFECT print:

Such a perfect print! Too bad it's on the wrong side of the card :(

Such a perfect print! Too bad it’s on the wrong side of the card 😦

EXCEPT – it’s on the wrong side of the page.  I’d confused which end of the foot I was going to have to draw the antlers.

Take 3 was a success.  It was a little darker and smudgier than I would have liked, but A was beyond fed up at that point so it would have to do.  I painted the antlers, nose and eyes with acrylic paint and used a gold Sharpie to write “Joyeux Noël”:

Scanned image unedited

Scanned image unedited

I wasn’t pleased with my script – it’s too small and a little crooked.  I practiced a bunch of times before writing it on the actual card but I think I got nervous and choked.

I scanned the image to my computer.  Once on there, I was able to edit the exposure and colouring of the image (just using the stock software, nothing fancy) to make it a little more grainy, a little more “raw”, like I wanted. I also cropped my script, enlarged it, and pasted it back on to make it more proportional.  Ah the wonders of editing!

Scanned image edited

Scanned image edited

I typed up the message to go inside and a little ode to my new blog on the backside.  I feel like having something on the back makes them seem more “official”.  Looking back, I could have just printed the date, so I’ll keep that in mind for next year. I then printed the whole thing on the cards.  I had to practice a few times to get the image printed on the right side and then flip the paper to print the message on the inside, but it didn’t take long to figure out.  Finally, I tied on a twine bow to add a little rustic texture to the cards.  And there you have it, our DIY personalized Christmas cards:

P1020393

P1020394

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The perfectionist in me isn’t 100% happy with them, but I think they turned out pretty close to what I had envisioned.  And really, I’ve got plenty of years ahead of me to practice making them just right 🙂  Now all that’s left is to add a little message and mail these babies out!

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