I love December for so many reasons, but primary among them is getting holiday cards in the mail almost daily all month long. Finding exciting snail mail in our box is rare, and it’s beautiful that the traditional exchange of Christmas Cards has remained strong, even in today’s digital age.
Today, I’m sharing our 2015 Christmas card, along with the simple DIY Card Ring that I’ve used for the last few years to turn my holiday card display into a little book that we can pull out and enjoy year after year. Dave and I have sent a holiday card annually since we were married in 2006. Among our cards have been a Thanksgiving Card and a Valentine’s Day card, but we realized that one of the fun parts of sending and receiving Holiday Greetings at Christmastime was putting them out on display! Almost any other time of year, the card will be looked at, maybe hung on the fridge for a day or week, then tossed into the trash. At Christmas, our home, as well as every home I visit, has a growing display of cards out to enjoy all season long. Our cards have varied greatly over the years. Some have been elaborate and handmade. Some–like this year’s cards from Artifact Uprising–are minimal and delivered right to my door. With a lot going on this year, traveling for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and the littles all at busy stages, I knew ordering cards (rather than trying to make or design my own) would be smart.
I love the beautiful, clean designs offered by Artifact Uprising, and some of my favorite cards received over the years have been theirs. (These 3-in-1 style are especially cool!) The cards are thick, recycled paper and rustic kraft envelopes, which both echo my current mood and style. We settled on this classic landscape card style, because the photograph we chose fit well. I ordered them on a Thursday and they arrived Monday to my home, ready to address and send.
I wanted a fresh, lifestyle photograph to go on our cards this year, and hired local photographer Chelsea Francis to do a home session with us. I’ll share more of the beautiful images in a separate post, but this one of our family hanging out together in our patio room felt like a fun glimpse into our everyday life to share (you know, in case our friends don’t get enough of that on instagram).
Rather than simply throwing away all of the beautiful and thoughtful cards we receive when the Christmas decorations come down, a few years ago I began saving all of the cards in a little box. It was so fun to pull them back out to look at the next year, especially since a lot of our cards come from the same family friends each year and we can see how the families grow and change. After a couple years of boxing the cards, I decide to create simple card rings to keep them on for easy storage and easier pursuing. The DIY takes just a few simple supplies and a few minutes to put together.
2″ Binder Ring
Decorative Ribbon and/or bell (optional)
To get started, organize the cards by layout. It’s easier to flip through them when the landscape are all together, and then the portrait all together. Once they’re organized, punch a hole in each upper lefthand corner. Not too far from the edges, but they don’t have to be perfect. When you have holes in each card, begin threading them onto the binder ring in the same order.At this point you can keep them together and look at them easily. I like to add the year to each ring, so I can remember at a glance and keep them all in order.
The chalk pens write really nicely on kraft paper, and I love the simple, rustic look. Orient the gift tag so the hole is on the left-hand side, so that when it’s face-up on the ring, it lays correctly. Then write the year. Thread the tag onto the ring on top of the top card.
I like to tie a fun ribbon around the ring so that the tag stays on top, and the cards feel a little more organized. A bell threaded onto the end of the ribbon adds a little fun (and keeps the card rings from wandering too far away in the hands of a curious toddler!)It’s not too late to order cards for this year, or start keeping your cards on a card ring for the future. you’ll be surprised how fast the years go by and how fun it is to look back each season on the cards of the past. Our own little family has definitely changed a whole lot since I started keeping the cards this way in 2010–when Milo was turning two, and I was expecting Eliot in the spring.
Do you send holiday cards? Do you keep those you receive? I’d love to hear!
Thank you to Artifact Uprising for sponsoring this post and project. All ideas and opinions are my own.