New Card Friday: Our Chinese New Year cards are as cute as dumplings (but not quite as tasty). Get excited for the year of the snake and celebrations galore come February 10th.
It was only fitting to make a stop motion tutorial for our Let’s Get Physical Valentine’s Day campaign. While we did flirt with the idea of doing an Olivia Newton-John remake (I mean c’mon, how cool would that be?), we decided it would be just as cool to introduce our new stand up cards to the world with a stop motion video, made by our very own designers, Ben and Colleen.
Here’s a look at what went into the project:
- Planning the vision. Ben made a little wireframe of the storyline, and turned crazy ideas into do-able ones.
- Setting up. It was simple and easy: a white background, a camera facing downwards, and lights. The light layout was diffuse and was inspired by this video.
- Shooting stills. Colleen was the hand model, and Ben the photographer.
- Adjusting the office scene. There was a tight deadline so we gave our office a homey feel to be a background for the cards.
- Editing. Colleen made the titles in Illustrator and Ben edited the images in Lightroom.
- Putting it all together. Colleen created the video in iMovie, cleaned up some of the order, and added music and voila…Done!
Today we are so excited to have a guest blog post from Kimberly from A Night Owl Blog!
It’s that time of year – time to finish up your holiday shopping and get those presents under the tree. Still have gifts to buy? On a budget? DIY and handmade gifts can save the bank and add a personal touch to complement your gift giving this year, and here are a few ideas we’ve put together for you to consider!
- Have bakers or little chef’s in your life? This Baker’s Gift Basket would be a sweet gift.
- Or how about those little ones? What kid wouldn’t want a Personalized Coloring Book and a new set of crayons?
- Pin up your kids favorite coloring pages we these awesome Dino Magnets!
- Or treat your loved ones to some pampering with these Holiday Spice Bath Salts.
- Put together some Upcycled Book Journals for those writers in your life. The beginning of the year is a great time to start fresh with a new journal!
- Purchase a bottle of wine and wrap it in these quick and easy Holiday Wine Bags for a festive gift.
- iPads and Kindles and Nooks, oh my! Make your own Technology Pouch for a great gadget gift!
- Or what about a special DIY Christmas Ornament that your gift recipient can enjoy every year at Christmas?
- These beautiful Hand Stamped Ornaments would also make a fantastic gift.
- How cute are these Baker’s Twine Wreath Ornaments? Who wouldn’t want one for their tree?
- These DIY Map Coasters would be great gifts for world travelers!
- More kids to buy for? These Handmade Sock Monkeys are sure to be a hit!
- Or make these Glass Tile Pendants extra personal by adding a special picture.
- Don’t forget the babies! These Mustache Binkies are just too fun.
- Or gift the gift of bling! This Styled by Tori Spelling Necklace is handmade but easy and beautiful!
So get those creative juices flowing and make something special for your loved ones this holiday season!
A Night Owl Blog
Christmas is just around the corner, which means Santa is coming to town! And we want to make sure he gets to your house alive and well, and that your kids never give up on the old man:
Take a picture with Santa. Yup, this one never gets old, even if the Santas do. Oh and this sleeping Santa should be nominated as the Best Santa Ever.
Set out some reindeer food. Reindeers pretty much eat everything (we think), but put out a bowl of reindeer food (we recommend birdseed or granola) on Christmas Eve and clean it out before the morning comes. Add in some galloping noises (slight stomping in the attic) for extra effect.
Milk and cookies. Santa’s got to be real hungry on his epic journey to visit over 6 billion households so bake him some cookies. And have him “eat some” during the night and Santa’s clumsy, so don’t forget to leave a cookie trail.
The iPhone gives us directions. Tells us where to eat the best food. Lets us connect with our friends and acts as our personal assistant (Tell Siri “I love you, Siri” and see what it says). And this holiday season, it might just save your life. Here are our top iPhone apps for the holidays:
- OnTheFly. An app with rave reviews that will no doubt find you the best deal for flights, anywhere and anytime.
- Kayak. A travel app with all your info – flights, hotels, car rentals – in one place. You can even plan itineraries.
- Gas Buddy. Going on a long road trip? Or need to find the cheapest gas? This app helps you get around, literally.
- Starbucks. Gotta get refueled for the holidays, and this app tells you where the nearest Starbucks is and lets you pay with your phone.
- Clear. Fun way to organize your not-fun things so you can have more fun. Duh. This organization app will help you keep your life together with to-do lists, shopping lists, gift lists, and more.
- Toca Hair Salon (Christmas edition). We are actually fans of all the Toca game apps – Helicopter Taxi, Toca Doctor, just to name a few – but these are bound to keep your children entertained on a road trip or during a long holiday party. Plus haven’t you always wanted to cut Santa’s hair?
- Reading Rainbow. I couldn’t resist this one. Reading Rainbow was my favorite show growing up, and I just had to include this app – who knew learning to read could be so fun?
- Letterpress. (For adults) Be careful, this addicting word game will have you attached to your phone at all times. It’s like hardcore scrabble, great for when you’re at the airport or standing in line at the store.
- Ink Cards. Snap a photo in real time and send a real card. Great for thank you’s for Christmas presents or impressing the in-laws.
- Fab.com app. Great app that lets you explore the latest designs and fashions for reasonable prices. Take it on the go with you and never miss a sale!
- Sesame. Beautifully curated gift sets for your friends and family. And it takes all of three clicks to order and send a gift on its way.
We are excited to bring you new manly and must-see Ink holiday designs from our friends at Cards From Men! Their mission is to make it easy for men to send greeting cards – by eliminating the need for a card aisle and providing cards that men will be proud to give. No more roaming the drug store aisles or playing “card-roulette”- sending holiday cards has never been easier!
Enter our 2012 Ultimate Photo Contest for a chance to win an iPhone 5, an iPad Mini, $300 in Gilt Groupe credit, and more! All you have to do is submit a photo into any of these categories (or as many as you want), which are listed below with their prizes and their submission deadlines. We will announce the winner each day at 6pm PST on our Facebook page, be sure to follow us to see if you’re the lucky winner. Good luck!
|12/8 1pm PST||Best Costume||
$100 Fandango Gift Card
|12/9 1pm PST||Most Hilarious||
Jawbone Jambox ($200)
|12/10 1pm PST||Best Pet Photo||
1 year subscription to Birchbox ($120)
|12/11 1pm PST||Best Action Photo||
$150 CanvasPop gift card
|12/12 1pm PST||Sweetest Moment||
iPad Mini ($330)
|12/13 1pm PST||Best Food Photo||
10 hours of Exec personal assistance ($250)
|12/14 1pm PST||Best Destination||
$300 shopping spree to Gilt Groupe
|12/15 1pm PST||Winning Moment|
|12/16 1pm PST||Best Candid||
$600 Southwest Airlines gift card
|12/17 1pm PST||Best Family Photo|
Gingerbread. Sugar cookies. Chocolate chip deliciousness. Here are a couple of new twists on some old faves for you to try out:
- Chocomint blossoms. Add some mint pizzazz to the usual assortment of cookies.
- Gingersnap logs. Vanilla, gingersnap, and sugary goodness in little bite-sized pieces.
- Rolo stuffed snickerdoodles. Put rolos in the middle of some good ol’ snickerdoodle mix. Easy and sooooooo good.
When it comes time to pick a photo for holiday cards, we agree that it’s tough. Some family members look better than others in certain photos, and then the dogs only sat still for all of one photo each. So why not just pick a couple photos and put them into collage form?
That’s exactly what we we’re thinking. Apps such as Pic Stitch (free), Diptic ($.99), and Frametastic (free), do exactly that. It’s easy:
Square collages using Pic Stitch:
1. Select a frame and choose your favorite photos.
3. Export the photo to your camera photo album.
4. Open the Ink Cards app and select your collage from your photo album for your card.
Rectangular collages using Pic Stitch:
1. Select a frame and click on “Aspect” to select the 7×5 format.
3. Choose your photos and export the collage to your camera photo album.
4. Open the Ink Cards app and select your collage from your photo album for your card.
What does it take to create a super rad, most amazing, hands-down-very-best holiday card ever? Well, the very best holiday photo of course!
None of us have the time or the energy to stage a shot or to edit our photos for hours and hours. But we do have phones. Phones have apps. And apps are awesome. Here are some of our very favorite that you can use to make your card stand out: