Christmas is a special time to bring everyone together and enjoy family traditions. For some, this may include an annual vacation or opening one present early. Others might enjoy gift exchanges, holiday foods, and volunteering opportunities. However you celebrate, a Christmas family Postcard can help spread your cheer.
Family postcards reach far and wide to remind all of your loved ones you’re thinking of them. It’s something grandma and grandpa will have on their fridge all year long. It’s also a great way to keep in touch with old roommates or friends from your hometown.
Did your cards not turn out as expected last year? Or have you never made a Christmas card before? Luckily, we have three simple tips to create a lovely family postcard everyone can enjoy.
Christmas family Postcard Step #1
Getting the best pictures for your Christmas family postcard can’t be left to chance. Sure, you might snap a great candid at Thanksgiving. But, what if someone is blinking or it comes out blurry? Make an effort to do the proper planning for the best postcard possible.
Here’s how to plan accordingly.
Get a Photographer
A professional photographer is one of the best resources you’ll have to make your card come to life. His or her equipment and experience are more reliable than your smartphone camera. This person knows how to make everyone look their best – from getting your good side to working with the rule of thirds.
The rule of thirds is a common practice used to frame shots. It makes the image more interesting and draws attention to the main subjects. In this case, that would be you and your family. Plus, this kind of framing leaves room for you to put text or Christmas decorations in the photo later.
Choose a Setting
Another benefit of a photographer is they can help you make the most of your setting. Outside locations like local parks or the family cabin are great. But, the lighting here is hard to control. Your photographer will know the perfect time of day to make it work.
Indoor settings are much easier to work with, but they still require a good eye. A photographer can tell you how to de-clutter your home to make it photo-shoot-ready. You don’t want dirty dishes on the counter or another distracting item in the background.
Or, you can make it easier on yourself by planning a Christmas family postcard shoot at a studio. This way, all you have to do is show up and smile!
Talk to Your Family
When booking the photographer, try to choose a date and time far enough in advance. This means well away from Christmas, like late October or mid-November. More importantly, it means enough time to give your family notice.
You don’t want to schedule a Christmas shoot just to find out your kid has a game or recital that day. Same goes for a work trip for your husband or a doctor appointment for the baby.
Set up something you can all agree on, and maybe even make it a fun family day. Getting dressed up for pictures is easily an excuse to enjoy a nice meal or go to an event in town, too.
Christmas family Postcard Step #2Pick the Right Outfits
After establishing the basic details, it’s time to think about what to wear. Outfit planning doesn’t have to be a hassle.
In fact, it can be a fun creative opportunity for everyone. You just have to know how to go about it.
Don’t Match Perfectly
First things first, talk to your partner and your kids about the ideas you have for a theme. Some people love a classic Christmas family postcard. They get dressed up in holiday colors, fun sweaters, or even cozy pajamas. Others might want to go a more neutral route. This can be something like a nice pair of jeans and a fancy shirt.
Either way, get creative! Don’t plan the same outfit for everyone. Instead of matching every detail, leave a little room for variations. Try having a few different color tones in everyone’s clothes. Or, have the same color in different styles, like a mix of t-shirts and button downs.
This way, everyone gets a chance to let their personality shine.
Avoid Busy Patterns
Although you shouldn’t all look the exact same, try to save busy patterns for another time. Too many patterns in one picture can cause confusion, or it focuses attention on one person. Patterns can also be hit or miss in a picture. Some translate well, while others don’t come out as sharp.
Even if your children are still learning how to dress themselves, you can at least give them options to choose from.
Go through their closet or shopping for something new together. Let them pick out what they like and give them your opinion. There is sure to be something they will like that fits the Christmas family postcard theme. Plus, this sense of autonomy will make them feel included and more excited to take pictures.
Christmas family Postcard Step #3Edit and Send
Prior to the shoot, remember to establish your rights to the photos. Tell the photographer if you want every picture or just a package of the best shots. Also, discuss touch-up edits they can do and if they plan to put their logo on it.
Get a timeline of delivery for your pictures as well.
Once you have the photos, it’s time to take your pick! You can opt to use one picture of everyone together or to make a collage of a few shots.
Either way, you need to edit in some details to make your postcard feel more like Christmas. Put the image(s) on a festive background. Pick a text to use for a cute note on the Christmas family postcard. Maybe add a stock graphic of mistletoe or holiday bells, too.
When you have the final postcard ready, mail it to yourself first. This allows you to check that it comes out as planned. Check the image quality, if the borders lined up, and if the text is legible.
All set? Break out your mailing list to make sure your postcard makes it in time!
Get Inspired for Your Christmas Family Postcard
Making the perfect postcard can be a fun tradition to add to your holiday plans. Beyond reaching out to loved ones, they make great memories for you to look back on over the years.
Here’s how to make a family postcard with style this holiday season.