How to Choose the Right Custom Christmas Card For You - Cramer Imaging - Quality Fine Art Photography
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How to Choose the Right Custom Christmas Card For You

How to Choose the Right Custom Christmas Card For You
Christmas season has started and it's now time to think about getting out your Christmas cards for the year.  Oh no!  I just said something dirty.  I mentioned Christmas cards: the big obligation and time suck of this time of year, other than gift shopping.  Starting Christmas cards need not be so dreadful.  It can actually be a rather simple process of choosing the right card for you.

Christmas cards are a way to show people you haven't forgotten them when the holiday season comes around but they can be very time consuming and expensive.  The cost of stamps is not something that can be fixed.  Making sure that you get the correct name and address with the correct personalized card is also a pain.  This leads to you not taking much time to choose a card in order to cut down on the time you spend on your cards this year.

Quality photograph of the Salt Lake City Utah Temple at night with Christmas lights professionally shot by Cramer Imaging
Christmas cards come with all kinds of images.
Picking out your Christmas card for the year need not be so lack-luster.  Choosing the right custom Christmas card comes down to a few things: budget, time, and audience.  After those considerations, it's simply a matter of what appeals to you.

Low Budget Options

Professional quality fine art product photograph of a Holy Family Christmas figurine in Pocatello, Bannock, Idaho by Cramer Imaging
Many store-bought religious-themed cards like to feature some variant of the Holy Family or the Nativity.
If you are newly wed, have had a reversal in fortune, or some other budget situation going where you can't afford much, then the Dollar Store selection is the best choice for you.  I've done that route before.  It is a great and budget-conscious way for newly weds to start getting into the traditions.

You can pick out a decent looking Christmas card and find as many boxes of that card style as you can to cover everyone on your list. Those cards will look generic and commercial but will fit the bill nicely for you.

You will even have the option of selecting something religious or more secular at most commercial locations.  All you have to do is look in the right spot for what you want.

Make sure that you like the cover image and the sentiment contained inside.  If you don't love it or feel it comes from your heart, then keep looking.  There really isn't anything worse that sending out the wrong message due to an oversight.  Most cards display the sentiment on the back of the card box.

Large Budget Options

If you are a person with means, then store-bought cards are not going to be the only option for you.  While generic store cards are great for low budget families to show some thoughtfulness, you have more options at your disposal.  It's time to step it up a bit.  Do you want to be another card stuck up on the bulletin board for a couple weeks or do you want to be the one whose card is talked about for years?

Let's face it, generic store-bought Christmas cards look almost as thoughtless as not sending a card at all when coming from someone like you.  Is that the message that you want to send to your family and friends this year?  This is where custom Christmas cards come in.

Custom Portrait Christmas Cards

In the world of custom Christmas cards, the Christmas portrait card is king.  It is a great way for growing and busy families to send something unique, though not personalized, and show off what they look like now.  Most portrait photographers have custom Christmas cards built into their product line.

These kinds of custom portrait Christmas cards are popular and expensive.  They're also useful from only one year.
If you have the time and the money to do so, portrait Christmas cards are a great way to go.  They will appeal to most people as they don't tend to favor religious themes.  You can order as many as you need to cover those on your list.

Choose a style or a theme that appeals to you and works well with the portrait you took.  Also remember that you will be limited to working with what the photographer provides.  No matter your choice here, clashing colors don't look good even on Christmas cards.

These custom portrait Christmas cards are a great option but not your only option and there are problems associated with these kinds of Christmas cards.

With custom portrait cards, if you don't get your portrait session booked and completed by about the end of November, you won't get your cards ordered in time.  Portrait photographers generally get booked up this time of year so portrait sessions can be difficult to schedule.

Custom Fine Art Christmas Cards

Another amazing but overlooked option for custom Christmas cards is to look at a fine art Christmas card.  It will be something that really makes a statement.  It doesn't require you to pay for a portrait session in addition to the custom cards so you save some money there.

You can choose the image so you aren't stuck with what the store offers if you don't like wings on angels (I know people who feel like that).  You also aren't stuck with exclusively religious or secular images either.  You can add a custom message on the inside of your card so you don't have to worry about whether or not the inside of the card says the right thing or not.

Professional quality stylized fine art photograph of a Russian doll Christmas Nativity scene in Pocatello, Bannock, Idaho by Cramer Imaging
You can also have some fun and style in your cards such as this tiled version of the Nativity on Russian nesting dolls.  Where can you find Christmas cards like this?
If you are a busy person, you don't need to worry about scheduling a portrait.  You can choose from off the website and still have a beautiful and thoughtful image.  You can order these as late as the beginning of December and still have them mailed out in time for Christmas.

You cannot include a photo of yourself and your family into these kinds of cards unless it is a traditional extra insert.  This is the only downside.

If you have a friend or relative who gets a bit testy over religious images (we have some of those), you can order a more secular style card for them and use religious cards for others, if you so choose.

Cramer Imaging's professional quality fine art photograph of a Christmas wreath, candle, and ornament in Pocatello, Bannock, Idaho
Fine art Christmas cards come with more secular themes too which look great as well.
The biggest bonus here is that you don't have to worry about finding enough of the same card style in the store.  You can order as many as you need to cover everyone on your list.

Make sure that you remember to choose an image and sentiment that you like.  It it doesn't appeal to you, then it's not right for you.

We hope that this advice helps make your holiday card season a little less stressful this year.