while many focus on the present-giving side of the festive season, the art of crafting thoughtful and considered christmas cards is often forgotten. it’s so easy to throw a cheery ‘merry christmas’ to friends and co-workers, fire off a quick text message, or email a one-liner to those you’re not seeing over the holidays and feel as if your work is done. the process of actually sitting done to pen a personalised greetings card to your nearest and dearest at this time of year seems to have gotten lost..
but the real sentiment of the season is spreading love and kindness, and what better way to spread true holiday cheer than by taking the time to acknowledge the people around you and the role they’ve played in your life, helping to make their christmas a little brighter with your words of encouragement, acknowledgement and heartfelt emotion?
there’s a common school of thought that sending christmas cards these days is detrimental to the environment – yet another piece of paper that will end up in the bin come new year – but a large number of cards these days are produced from sustainably farmed trees (just look for the fsc logo), and if you’re spending the time writing a thoughtful card from the heart then they’re far more likely to end up in a memory-box than the recycling one anyway! christmas card sales also make charities an estimated £50m per year, so think of it as another great way to donate to some of your favourite causes.
the key is the choose the right people to send a card to; perhaps those you’ve been out of touch with lately and would like to reconnect with in the new year, those who’ve suffered a loss or personal set-back during the year, and those who’ve made the biggest impact in your life – not just this year, but all the years before as well. christmas cards, when done right, have the power to mend fences, rekindle relationships and help build new long-lasting ones for the future.
buying christmas cards is also a fantastic way to support independent designers. remember sarah hamilton’s just a card campaign? purchasing your greetings cards for your local artists boutique or craft market will help you spread your festive cheer even further and wider by supporting their business going into 2018 as well – win, win! plus you’re far more likely to choose a unique card that stands out from the others on your recipient’s mantelpiece, as well as discovering a festive design far more tailored to them than another illustration of santa riding through the sky on his sledge.
so, here are a few of my personal favourite, not-so-traditional, festive cards from independent designer-makers and small retail boutiques:
last posting dates for christmas (uk):
wed 20 dec: 2nd class and 2nd class signed for
thurs 21 dec: 1st class and 1st class signed for
thurs 21 dec: special delivery guaranteed
fri 22 dec: special delivery guaranteed saturday delivery
(for international dates, click here)