Archive for November, 2012

Luxury Holiday Greeting Cards

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

‘Tis the season to be over-the-top merry, in everything you do.  We all try to be conscious of our spending throughout the year, but it seems like the holiday season is the one time during the year that we bend out wallets out a bit and go over-the-top with spending, decorating and gift giving.

One of the coolest things about InvitationBox is that we have products for all budgets from small to normal, all the way to no budget at all.  And today’s inspiration board showcases our luxury holiday greeting cards – greeting cards – items that are over-the-top in paper quality, printing, assembly, accents and presentation – because you deserve the best, and so do your recipients.  Our most luxurious holiday greeting cards are from William Arthur and Checkerboard, two widely known vendors for their high quality papers and printing processes in matte digital, thermography (raised) print and engraving.

Catch a peek at some of these two vendor’s most exciting and luxurious designs of the season, with simple accents to fun embellishments with ribbons, sleigh bells, snowflake strings, marshmallows and more!

mistletoe ~ sleigh ~ garland ~ pine cones ~ pizelles

A Cookie-Filled Holiday Greeting

Friday, November 16th, 2012

What’s your favorite part about the holiday season?  If your answer is baking cookies, boy do we have the PERFECT holiday greeting card for you, this year!  This cookie-filled holiday greeting card is the inspiration for our blog today – it’s the We Heart You Greeting Card by Checkerboard – which doubles as a holiday greeting and a cookie cutter in one!

The holiday greeting card is printed on red card stock in the shape of a tag with a red satin ribbon on top.  Add your holiday greeting to the front of the card and flip the card over to reveal a recipe for sugar cookies on the back!  The card comes tied to a heart shaped cookie cutter gift for your recipient.  A white pillow-pack mailer comes with your greeting cards for safe mailing, and a red candy cane adorns the front of your mailer when you select return address as an option when checking out.

These cards do require extra postage, but just think about how your holiday card will be the best one they receive this holiday season!

In my cookie inspiration board below, I wanted you to see how easy it was to inspire others this holiday season, as they get joy from receiving your holiday cards, and how they’ll think of you when they actually use your cookie cutter!

From the hot chocolate they’ll drink while making their cookies to the apron they’ll wear while sifting out the flower, your cookie cutter card will inspire love, joy and fun this holiday season.  Take a look…

 

cookie tray ~ candy cane heart ~ cookies for santa ~ hot chocolate ~ mail box ~ cutter in flour ~ apron

Holiday Digital Photo Greeting Cards

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

‘Tis the season for spreading joy and greetings to others!  Each year I look forward to opening my mailbox to see what is inside during the months of November – January.  There’s my cousin’s annual photo holiday card which showcases a picture of the kids posing for the holidays – and each year I can’t believe how much they have grown.  Or, there’s my friend from the west coast that sends a photo holiday card each year, while enclosing an annual holiday letter catching us up on her life and family over the past year.  It’s so nice to see the mailbox filled with these festive greetings rather than a pile of bills, like the rest of the year!

At InvitationBox, we have truly turned our focus to digital photo holiday cards this year, and we have so many cute, modern and sassy designs, I have no idea which one I’ll be choosing for my annual holiday card this year.  How will you choose?  Some let the perfect holiday card design dictate which family photo they will take or choose, and others let the photo do the talking, and simply look for a holiday card design that will accentuate the great photo they have – it’s up to you!

You’ll catch a bit of holiday spirit from our holiday greeting card inspiration board below, and you’ll see some of the brand new designs that we’re offering!  The most popular cards this year are digital photo, rather than the traditional self-adhered photo card.  Using your photo as the main background of the card is also very popular, where the photo actually bleeds right off the edge.  You’ll also see more modern color designs this year, veering off of the traditional holiday reds and greens – opt for something merry & bright instead, like one of these designs below…

Holiday Calendar Greeting Cards

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

During the holiday season, most businesses take the opportunity to reach out to employees, vendors, associates, clients and customers to thank them for their support over the past year, and send a plethora of holiday wishes.  However if you think about it, you don’t really want to just send a holiday greeting that is limited to the holiday season – why not send a holiday greeting that lasts all year long?

It’s this very sentiment that brings you the holiday calendar greeting card – the best way to reach out to your employees, contacts and customers throughout each month of the year.  Calendar greeting cards feature tri-panel cards which showcase a wall calendar of the 2013 year and most popular calendar holidays.   You can add your holiday message, company name and even corporate logo to the bottom of the card, so that your recipient will see your name on their wall, all 365 days of the year – pretty smart, right?

Our favorite and most popular calendar greeting cards feature holiday designs which celebrate the festive season, along with American pride, worldly peace and the holiday spirit.  Choose from damask designs like the one above to American flags, globes, flags of our world’s nations, seasons, holiday ornaments, peace doves and more!

Worldly Holiday Traditions

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

So many of the traditions of Christmas become the yearly “norm” for us, and we don’t even realize that these traditions that we hold and practice each year, are actually traditions and practices from other cultures and countries, which we have adapted and evolved into our own.  In honor of National Holiday Stationery Month, we are celebrating global and peace themed holiday greeting cards today.  I thought this would be the perfect time to do a little research on America’s most popular holiday and Christmas traditions, and find out just where all of these unique ideas and practices started!

Who would have thought it would have been on the other side of the world

STOCKINGS HUNG BY THE FIRE
Turkey
There seems to be many ideas as to where the idea for Christmas stockings came from.  The most popular “legend” or “story” is that Saint Nicholas, a bishop in Turkey, would go around leaving gold coins in girls’ stockings at night, when they were leaving them by the fire to dry.  Saint Nick had inherited a large amount of wealth from his parents, which he spread around to benefit others.

THE CHRISTMAS TREE
Germany
Plants and trees have long been of special importance for many people during the winter season, as a celebration of the winter solstice.  Just as we decorate our Christmas trees/pine trees, the people of ancient times also hung boughs over their doors and residence, however this was done to ward off bad spirits, ghosts and illness.  It is said that Germany began the tradition of the Christmas tree in the 16th century, when Christians brought trees inside their home to decorate and enjoy.    They started with a wooden tree, which was decorated with evergreen branches and candles.  It was said that a 16th century Protestant reformer walked home from church one evening, and was dazzled by the look of the stars twinkling amongst the evergreen trees.  He wanted to show this to his family, thus he took a tree home with him, and wired all of the branches with lit candles.

SANTA CLAUS
Holland
Dutch settlers brought the tradition of Saint Nicholas over to the United States, New York Specifically.  The idea of Saint Nick largely grew after the Revolutionary War, after a dinner in 1810 celebrated the Saint Nicholas, and an image was drawn of this jolly and generous man.  He was originally known as a religious figure, however quickly evolved into a children’s character.

CHRISTMAS GREETING CARDS
London
Sending holiday cards is a tradition held by people all over the world as a way to spread the holiday spirit to those we befriend, care for and love.  Christmas cards go back until the middle ages when wood was used for the engraving of prints and religious messages.  Over the years, Christmas and holiday cards grew more and more popular.  In 1843 London was the first location to offer Christmas cards that were available for purchase, and made by someone else.  John Callcott was hired by Sir Henry Cole to send greetings out to all of his peers.  In 1875, American joined the bandwagon and began mass producing Christmas cards by Louis Prang.


stockings ~ christmas tree ~ santa clause ~ worldly greeting cards

Business Appreciation Holiday Greeting Cards

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Sometimes when we think of the holiday season, we only think about the relationships we have with our family and friends.  However, if you are a business owner, or part of a large corporation or a team member in a small business, you know how vital it is to show appreciation for a successful business year.

There’s no better time of year than the holidays to improve relationships within your company, whether it is company to employee, business to business, business to vendor…and sending a business appreciation holiday greeting card is a great way to keep in touch over the holidays, as well as unite your company into one solid, successful and spirited unit.

We typically suggest sending out your business appreciation cards in early December, however it is acceptable to send your cards out anytime during the holiday season, from November throughout January.  Most businesses tend to focus on celebrating the holiday season and season’s greetings with their recipients, as we all know, not everyone celebrates Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa, and you wouldn’t want to single out any specific holiday.  We offer a variety of holiday neutral greeting cards which encompass the spirit and meaning of the holiday season, without singling out any specific religious or celebratory holiday.

Our favorite and most popular designs feature modern sparkling beaded garland designs, pine cone scenes, winter weather scenes, worldly flags, peace doves, snowflakes, greetings for the new year, city scapes, holiday wishes and more.  We also have fun digital photo corporate greeting cards which allow you to upload a photograph of your company or team, creating a totally personalized business appreciation card.

Make your employees feel special, united and like the vital part of the company they are.  After all, without them, you wouldn’t have a reason to be sending this card…

A Silver New Years Eve Party

Sunday, November 11th, 2012

Assuming you don’t think the world will be ending on December 21st this year, now is the perfect time to start planning your New Years holiday celebration.  If you’re looking to spruce things up a bit this year, add a little sparkle to your event and try something a bit different with a themed New Years party.

We introduced the Let’s Ring in the New Year Charcoal party invitation to our website this holiday season, which is what inspired my blog and New Years collage today, as it’s full of life, fun festive stars and a pop of pink, (my favorite color).  I feel like gold and black are the traditional colors of the New Years holiday, so why not change things up a little bit with a silver party for your guests to attend.

You can ask your guests to arrive wearing a silver or sparkling hue, and then deck your halls with an array of silver sparkling decor, garland and flare.  Try a themed Christmas tree in your home with silver tinsel and silver bulb ornaments.  Decorate your holiday spread with a silver place setting and a gorgeous silver centerpiece.  Dress to impress with a shimmering holiday dress and heels that make you stand out in the crowd.

Check out our Silver New Years Party inspiration board below and get planning!  New Years Eve is less than two months away!

invitation ~ wreath ~ ornaments ~ champagne flutes ~ place setting ~ shoes ~ nails
dress ~ clutch ~ sparklers ~ cupcakes ~ earrings ~ pearls

A RED Holiday Party

Saturday, November 10th, 2012

The holiday season offers one of the most beautiful color palettes of the year…from hues of red, green, gold, silver and white, you just can’t go wrong when you’re planning a holiday event.  One of our favorite colors of the season is the iconic red hue, which is the symbol of love, warmth and what I feel is the most iconic color of the Christmas holiday.

We have created this inspiration board hoping it might inspire you to host your own RED themed holiday – whether it’s casual and relaxed or elegant and formal.  I love the idea for a RED party for the holidays, just like a black or white party hosted mid-year.  For an elegant holiday soiree, it’s a really simple way to dress up your holiday spread, from William Arthur invitations to red wine served for dinner.  In the collage below you’ll see a few suggestions for your RED themed holiday party, including a sultry yet festive red holiday dress, candy cane dessert shooters, a formal yet festive place setting, cranberry candles and a traditional red holiday martini.

Get festive and create your own ambiance with a red themed holiday party

wine ~ dessert shooters ~ place setting ~ dress ~ candles ~ red tinis

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Invitations

Friday, November 9th, 2012

One of my best friends had an ugly Christmas sweater party a few years ago and I thought it was one of the coolest holiday party ideas I had ever heard of!  I had no idea that her party idea would take holiday party planning by snowstorm…because I can’t tell you how many ugly Christmas sweater party invitations we see going through the system at work now.

Let’s all be honest – we all have one of those “ugly” or “tacky” Christmas sweaters in the back of our closet –  it was either given to us with love by our Aunt Mildred, it’s our Mother’s or we thought it was cool about ten years ago.  Well guess what guys, now you have an excuse to actually WEAR it!!

When you plan an Ugly Christmas sweater party, be sure to choose an ugly Christmas sweater party invitation, like the one in the left of our blog…with full on knit patterns and mini reindeer.  Ask your guests to don their favorite, ugliest and tackiest Christmas sweater as they come over to help you celebrate the holiday season.  Plan on having a wild, fun and festive night, as these ugly Christmas sweaters tend to inspire a bit of craziness!  Serve up some amazing holiday hors d’oeuvres, Christmas cookies and of course an array of Christmas cocktails!

Lastly, don’t forget your camera!  You’ll want to catch photos of all of the best tacky sweaters, from the sweaters that light up like your Christmas tree to the embroidered snowflakes, full-on holiday scenes and the dreaded candy cane turtleneck!

So, where will you get your ugly Christmas sweater from?  Me?  My mother is a fourth grade teacher, and I think her Christmas sweater vests are RIGHT up my alley!

Ugly Christmas Sweater Inspiration Page

A White Elephant Gift Exchange

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

White Elephant – noun
1.  a posession unwanted by the owner but difficult to dispose of
2.  a possession entailing great expense out of proportion to its usefulness or value to the owner

We’ve all heard it before…”we purchased a brand new car and it turned out to be a white elephant” or “There’s a white elephant in the room”.  It’s this very circumstance or object that brings our blog today…it’s a white elephant gift exchange party!  If you’re out of ideas for your upcoming holiday party, and you’re tired of the typical Secret Santa event, this fairly new holiday party theme is sure to get the festivities going – especially if you have particularly funny friends who enjoy pranks and well – anything tacky!

So what exactly is a white elephant gift exchange?  Well, we’ve all been there on Christmas day opening presents, when you have that awkward moment when you open a gift from a relative and a pack of dryer balls or an ugly Christmas sweater is inside.  You try to act overjoyed, knowing that you’ll never ever use the gift, unless that relative comes to visit!  A white elephant gift exchange celebrates this moment, and creates it for everyone who attends your party.

The rules:

  1. Send out your white elephant gift exchange invitations about 3-4 weeks before your party.  Make sure your guests are aware that it is a white elephant party.
  2. Ask each guest to bring a wrapped gift with a limit of $10 – $20 – the whole point is that the gift should be tacky, or something rather un-useful.
  3. When your guests arrive, have them pile their wrapped gifts on a large table.
  4. Everyone picks a number from a hat, and number one goes first and chooses a wrapped gift.
  5. Number one unwraps their present.
  6. Number two can then either steal number one’s gift, or choose a new unwrapped gift to unwrap.
  7. This continues all the way until the end, when number one can then steal a gift or keep what they have.

Be sure to take plenty of photos of your guests swapping gifts and marveling over all of the gifts they’ve received.  Need a few gift ideas?  Check out these wild and crazy ideas below…Shake Weight anyone??

beardo ~ beer mustache ~ shake weight ~ lawn gnome ~ book ~ apron ~ slippers