How to Make a Digital Card
Personalize it: Make your own Digital Photo Card
By: Shandley McMurray
Tired of sending tacky snowmen cards each holiday season? This year, personalize your greetings with a photo card. Upload your favorite picture, or two or three, a personal message and voila – you've got a one-of-a-kind card that's sure to please everyone on your mailing list.
It's unique. Everyone loves to see updated pictures of you and your family, especially those who live far away. Sending a personalized greeting card is a wonderful way to show that you care enough to create your own design and message. And it's one card that won't be thrown out with the used wrapping paper.
It's cheap. A box of store-bought cards can cost, on average, about $12 for a box of 10. Customized cards purchased online cost about $6 for the same number. And that includes shipping.
It's easy. Creating your own holiday cards is as easy as a few clicks of your mouse. There's no need to trudge though slush or snow to pick up a box of cards. Just follow our tips below and you'll receive your personalized greetings in days, delivered straight to your door.
It'll please the in-laws. There's nothing grandparents love more than a picture of their adorable grandchildren (other than a visit with the real thing, that is). These cards are sure to be plastered on the fridge or carefully placed in a purse for an impromptu show-and-tell.
Customized cards are becoming so popular that you can do them almost anywhere – from your local photo shop to Wal-Mart or Costco. But why leave home if you don't have to? Here are a few of the more popular sites that offer personalized cards:
Creating a personalized greeting is a cinch no matter which site you choose. While each may have small differences in the uploading/ordering process, the overall procedure is pretty much the same for everyone. Here's how it works:
Sign up. Enter your name, e-mail address and a password to log on to the site.
Choose your card. Browse the designs and pick your favourite. Most sites offer a choice between a 4x6 and 5x7 card. And many have options for you to add multiple pictures to the design. Some sites (like Shutterfly, KodakGallery and Snapfish) even offer fancier, folding cards as opposed to the one-sided photo card, but they cost about $2 more each.
Install the software. Some sites require you to download and upload tool or Flash in order to upload your pictures. Just follow the directions they provide. In most cases, you shouldn't even have to restart your computer.
Upload your pictures. Once you've installed the software, it's simple to upload your favourite photo or photos. Each site offers easy how-to directions.
Choose your sheen. Just as you would with regular photos, it's time to pick your preference – matte or glossy.
Write a message. Depending on the style of card you chose, you'll have between 50 and 500 characters to create a personal message. Folding cards allow much more space as the message goes on the inside. You can often choose your own font as well. Want to make it even more personal? Not only will Shutterfly allow you to develop a separate message for each card, but they'll also address, stamp and mail your cards. (Note: This option is more costly.)
Preview your card. View your card complete with photo and personalized greeting. Most sites allow you to change your photo or edit your text. And many also allow you to choose a different design for your card if you're not happy with the original. Note: Once you click “choose another design/card,” Wal-Mart and Snapfish automatically insert your picture into all of their greeting cards, making it much easier to visualize which card will look best.
Pay. Choose the number of cards you'd like (they all come with envelopes –KodakGallery lets you choose the colour of the envelopes while Shutterfly will add a return address). Then, enter your shipping address. Once you've chosen a method of shipping (expedited – more expensive or regular – cheapest) it's time to approve the overall cost. Then, enter your payment information and wait for your shipment. Note: Wal-Mart is substantially less expensive than the other sites. Cards cost roughly $0.33 each and shipping is cheap (or free if you pick the cards up from a nearby store). I ordered 20 cards and only paid $9.10 with shipping, while mailing me 10 cards from KodakGallery cost $15.81.
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