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Tips for How to Ensure Your Holiday Greeting Cards Have a Formal Style

Nearly 2 billion holiday greeting cards are sent each year during the month of December. This tradition dates back generations and shows no signs of slowing down. Whether you want to send very personal holiday photo cards to friends and family or more formal holiday greeting cards to business associates, there are a few basic elements to keep in mind when selecting the right card for you.

First, the quality of stationery is important, but not the most important element of a formal card. Smooth card stock 100 pounds or greater is a good reference to go by and most professional stationers print their holiday cards on this grade paper.

Next, choose a design style that meets your needs. Sending greetings to family? Consider creative holiday photo cards that reflect your family's personality. Choose a simple photo to use in the card. A photo of your children or possibly your entire family would work the best. Black and white photos produce the best effect when paired with a colorful card.

If you decide against photo greeting cards, a card with traditional winter illustrations is considerably more formal than a child-like picture of Santa or a Christmas tree. Consider selecting a card with deeper, richer reds and greens and a crisp font in black or metallic gold to add to the formal feeling of your holiday greeting cards.

The message in your card should convey the appropriate tone to your recipient. Family and friends always appreciate a personalized message about the children. For business colleagues, a simpler greeting, such as "Best Wishes in the New Year" or "Season's Greetings", may work better. Such messages are especially appropriate and safe for audiences who may not celebrate the holidays in the same way you do.

To finish off the formal feel of your holiday cards, a ribbon of fine tulle or satin adds a nice touch, as do wax seals, matte stickers and personalized, pre-printed return address labels in matching designs. Remember to keep it simple. Too many frills and colors will end up being more tacky than tasteful.

For more information on birth announcements, baby shower invitations and children's holiday greeting cards, visit

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