Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Hallmark Did Not Invent the Greeting Card

The First Christmas Card
The very first Christmas Card by Sir Henry Cole

     During any holiday season you can not walk into a store and not see some form of a greeting card.  I have been caught saying, "Hallmark created the holiday to sell cards".

     Did you know the first Christmas card was designed in 1843 by Sir Henry Cole in the UK.  He partnered with John Horsley who did the art work.  They sold the cards for 1 shilling which equates to 8 cents today.

     In 1860 the printing process improved so cards could be printed in higher quantities.  By the 1900s giving Christmas cards had spread throughout Europe and became especially popular in Germany.  In 1915, John C. Hall and two of his brothers created Hallmark Cards, who are still one of the biggest card makers today!  So there is your history lesson for the day.

     I love receiving cards.  Especially now where we can use our photos on the cards to share with our family and friends how are children, grandchildren and families have grown or what vacation we were on.  It is so important to show our loved ones how we have grown, accomplishments, experiences and we can do it with cards and our photographs.

    Over the years there has been a decline in card giving in general.  Why not turn your card into a gift that can be kept out all year long.  So here is a thought.  Michael's has stunning frames that are inexpensive.  Instead of mailing the card, put the card in the frame and personally deliver it or mail it if you prefer.  Then mail your card next year and they now have a frame to update with the new card.  You can kick it up a notch and add a family photo on the back and the receiver can use that side in the frame.  It truly is a small gift that is full of thought and meaning.  A true gift that will keep on giving throughout the year.

    So I challenge you, take out your phone and pick 1, 2, 3 or more photos and lets have a conversation about what your card should look like.  All pricing includes shipping and white envelopes.  Below are some samples for inspiration and the link will bring you Etsy for more designs,


Friday, November 2, 2018

Take a Moment and See the Signs

It has been sometime since I have posted on Face Book or sent an email regarding the latest designs I have been working on.  I had to take some time to be with my family and time for myself since my mother passed away unexpectedly in January.

I am back into designing as I have been inspired.  

This summer, I was in Maine visiting with family, a place my mother loved spending her time, and as Ace of Base sang in 1993, I Saw The Sign.  I believe in signs, especially those left by loved ones whom are now in heaven.  Everyday, I would be looking for that one sign letting me know things are going to be OK.  Haven't seen one, until this summer.

What an amazing moment I saw.  No rain in sight but a sunny cool summer morning in Maine.  I step outside admiring nature, I saw an image of a rainbow on the hood of my car.  At first I thought it was the way the light was hitting the car but no, it was a reflection.  When I looked up into the sky, among the wispy clouds a rainbow began to appear and slowly, a full rainbow was seen.  The rainbow was small but complete.  It was not your everyday rainbow after a rain shower but a full rainbow was seen, and it was upside down, like a smile.  My mother was smiling down on us that day.  

After having my moment, I knew I had to capture the sight in a photograph.  You don't always need a fancy SLR camera to take amazing photos. Yes, at times having a SLR is required, but for an amateur, not so much. All you need is a good eye.  This is the difference between an average and an amazing photo. I am surprised how well my iPhone 7 Plus performs.   So I quickly grabbed my phone and snapped the photo.  I looked a the screen and saw that I captured it.  Then I took a moment, stepped back and saw there was so much more to capture in the photo.  Now this is what makes an amazing photo.  

The original photo I took quickly. I had just looked up into the sky from viewing the hood of my car to see what the reflection was from.  I grabbed the phone from my pocket in fear the sight would disappear.  This photo captures the moment I saw the rainbow.  A good photo.
This photo is where I took a moment and saw everything that was happening in that morning. I dropped the lens just enough to capture the sun, while still keeping the rainbow in view.   The sun was rising on a crisp clear summer morning among the trees surrounding Concord Pond in Maine.  The sun's rays glistened through the tall ever green trees.  To me, it was a heavenly moment.  This is why so many people in my family refer to this area as "God's Country".

Now the important thing is not to let this photo stay in the shadows of my phone and PC or to only see a brief moment of appreciation while it sits on Face Book and receives thumbs up and hearts.  In the upcoming weeks and months, I will take the time to show you what you can do to breathe life into your photos and how to take that moment and create amazing pictures with whatever camera you have.

Stay tuned to see what I do with the above photo.  If you have questions in the mean time, feel free to email me at andrea@blueperfection.com.  I am in the middle of redesigning my website but you can find me on Face Book showing you all my new designs, gift ideas, and promotions.