Christmas letters, a how to:

RolyPoly SantaBunny HopHerald AngelsSnowman About TownSprightly Santa

Letterhead designs from 123Print, click to see enlargements

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WGot a long mailing list for Christmas? It’s hard to beat the efficiency of a computer, page-layout programs like Word or InDesign, desktop printers, and pre-printed stationery! I use all of these things, but with a personal touch for writing Christmas letters.

Sprightly SantaHere are some ideas for colorful Christmas letters, from my holiday workshop:

• When you are typing up your text, it's okay to mix up fonts, but choose a few that look good together and stick to that. ALL CAPS, italics, and colorful text are all expressive. Try everything, then go back and tone it down if the letter is hard to read!

• Try a big capital letter in a different font at the beginning of each paragraph.

Sadie• Choose your paper before you start, so you will have a good idea about how much room there is for text, and what kind of photos will compliment the design. White backgrounds are best if you are inserting photos, any color goes if you are embellishing with rubber stamps or stickers.

• Print out a preliminary design, and check it very carefully. Don't print on your stationery until you are sure it's ready to go.

• Leave room on your design for signatures (or paw prints), or a place to stamp or add a sticker.

Christmas Angel• Are you using photos in your letter? Open them one at a time, crop and shrink them to a managable size (one inch square is not too small for an illustrated letter), add matching borders if you like, and re-save them in a folder with your project so they will be easy to find as you go.

• A little design tip: an odd number of photos may be easier to balance out on your page than an even number. Try and see.

• Don't know where to start? Think about the highlight of your whole year, and write about that. Our highlight was making progress on our Victorian house project, and lots of happy memories walking our dogs on the river. Pictures help tell the story.

• Want to try something different? Write the letter from your pet's point of view.

• Print an extra copy for your family scrapbook.

Here are my top five favorite designs for Christmas stationery from 123Print. Click to see an enlargment:

RolyPoly SantaBunny HopHerald AngelsSnowman About TownSprightly Santa

bling angels

Bling angel

A fun way to use up squirreled-away treasures .
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ornament boxes

Ornament storage

Functional and decorative, these look great stacked nearby to add atmosphere to a room.
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Christmas letters

Sprightly Santa

Lots of good ideas for cool Christmas letters.
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