Keeping all of that in mind, there are so many things to do this time of year that it can be hard not to get overwhelmed with it all. So, I thought I give some tips on choosing and making your Christmas cards so that it can be a fun and stress-less event!
Without delay; here are my top 5 tips for helping you choose your card design:
1. Check out your stash! Look at what you have to help you create your design. Many times we get so much stuff that we forget what we have and buy more or similar items. Doing a pre-shopping inventory will save you time and money in the long run!
2. Use coupons and sales to your advantage! Coupons and sales are aplenty this time of year and you can get many items cheaper this time of year than any other time.
3. Plan early! This is so important! You don't need any more stress this time of year and if you plan ahead early enough you can always use more coupons/sales to get what you need at a better deal! Planning and buying early can help stop those last minute trips to the craft after you've realized that you're all out of that must-have item that is probably not on sale and you've already used your coupon...
4. Set a budget! Know how much you want to spend and stick to it! This will also help you with sticking to your chosen design. Making your cards should break the bank! Also, plan for postage of your cards!
5. Choose a design that is do-able for YOU! If you are new to card making pick a simpler design that won't get you stressed or flustered. This should be a fun experience, not one that you regret! If you are more experienced, make sure that you pick a design that is do-able for the amount of cards you will need to produce. For instance, if you have a design that requires large amounts of intricate piecing or time; it would be best not to have to make 100 of those. OR you could always make a few of the more intricate cards for closer friends/family and another, less time intensive design for the rest of those on your list. Plan wisely because I'm not kidding you when I say it will save you time and a few gray hairs!
Now here's my top 5 tips for creating your design...
1. Ok, now that you have your design...stick to it! Don't second guess it, don't look for other cool/new designs that might try, don't try adding new stuff. This is a budget killer and a good way to make you want to pull your hair out after you've started. Remember that at one time you loved the design for a reason...now stick to it. I say this from experience, my cards always start as one idea and usually end as something else. It's great to experiment while your choosing a design but not after you've made the plans, bought the items, etc.
2. Set aside a schedule time to work on your cards. Whether you choose to do some daily, weekly, whatever; schedule some uninterrupted time and stick to it! Pick a time that works best for you, morning, night, weekends, whatever; just stick with it.
3. Work in small batches. Most cards have more than one piece of papercrafting that will need to be adhered to make the final project. So, if you have a card that has a stamped present, a stamped sentiment and a ribbon for instance, work in batches. One day you can cut your bases and put ribbon on them. The next time you may stamp and color your presents and so on and so forth. It works much like a production line and feels more organized.
4. Repeat after me..."Fat cards cost me money!". Yup, we all love our dimensional foam dots but remember that after your cards reach a certain thickness, they will need to be sent at a higher postal rate, rather than standard stamp price (no, I don't know the price of a stamp right now..sue me :) ) If you can fit your enveloped card through the slot in your paper trimmer (about 1/4" wide), then you should be able to send it without any additional postage. One dimensional can mean the difference of .50 cents and $2.00 per card. Craft wisely!
5. Have fun! I know I shouldn't have to say this but crafting should be fun and not a chore. So put on some music, or sip some cocoa, get the family involved...you may be amazed how much they enjoy helping, or even get a group of friends together for a card making party. I've always wanted to do this!
I hope some of these tips will be helpful! So, now my fun begins! Check back today for the unveiling of first of my 12 Christmas cards. Whether you're new to card making or experienced, I hope to have something for everyone. If you have your design picked out, then come on back to ooohh and aaahh! See y'all back later!