Anatomy of a Design: Holiday Edition
Updated: Jan 4
I don’t create a ton of Christmas card designs, but I have a handful of previous wedding clients that I have the pleasure of working with every year. I know their styles and preferences now and I start thinking about what we are going to do around the middle of October each year. This year, I decided to create some watercolor design elements to use in their designs. I thought it would be fun to see how many different ways I could use these elements.
I started by painting some holiday greenery. These were going to be used in each of the designs.
My first design came from a client I have worked with for many years. One of my earliest projects was her daughter’s engagement party. Followed shortly after by that same daughter’s wedding, later a baby shower invitation for a niece, an engagement party for another relative and her annual Christmas card order. She has amazing style - very traditional and elegant; a true classic.
The next design was from a client that I have had the pleasure of working with since she first came to me for her husband’s surprise birthday party several years ago. She loves to let me try new things with her cards. This year she requested a rustic plaid design. I pulled one of the colors from their photo to use in the plaid and again used the watercolor artwork.
For the next design, we wanted to change it up a little from years past. I took the watercolors I had painted and played with the color a bit. I wanted to have a simplified color palette for this one, so I adjusted the watercolors to be a soft gold-toned color. I added in a forest green and some elegant fonts.
For my own holiday cards, I used the same designs but created an outline of the watercolor elements. I created a frame from those outlines and had them blind debossed on the card. Blind debossing is letterpress printing with no ink. It is all about the texture and I am a fool for some simple design elements that make a big statement without hitting you in the face. The colors I used were pulled from the photos Ashley of Ashley Kristen Photography took of my family. Once I saw the photos, I knew exactly what I wanted my cards to look like. I opted for a green envelope with white printing and it all came together.