catherine saunders | DIY holiday cards


Happy new year! This holiday season has been particularly crazy for us as we’re traveling and moving in the month of December. I usually design my own holiday cards from scratch, but this year I needed to put something together quickly and easily, so I used templates and patterned papers from Paislee Press to create our family card and a card for my in-laws.

You need a bit of software to make these cards. I use Adobe Photoshop, but Photoshop Elements works just as well for simple photo editing and using digital papers and templates from places like Paislee Press. If you’re not familiar with using digital templates, Liz has a simple tutorial. For our cards, I had our friend take a bunch of pictures in their backyard on Thanksgiving. We managed to get a few winners in a series of about 150 shots – plenty for a holiday card. I used holiday greetings no. 5 for the scripted text and the template.


It’s really easy to make these templates your own. I opened the photo I wanted to use in Photoshop and cropped it to 5.25 x 7.25 inches (the size my printer requires). I used the magic wand tool in Photoshop to select the scripted “merry christmas” text and move it around to better fit our photo orientation. Then I added our name and the year underneath and voila – the front of our card was done in a matter of a few minutes.


On the back, I started with the 12-photo collage from holiday greetings no. 5, deleted three of the clipping masks, and made the rest a bit larger to fill the card. I only had five photos I wanted to include, so I added a pattern from the december you are a fave no. 4 kit to one of the clipping masks. The green matched our photos and added a bit of interest to the back of the card. A simple message, our names and the kids’ ages completed it.


My folks wanted to use a family photo taken on vacation this year. I added the “merry christmas” text from holiday greetings no. 2 and the patterned paper from the december you are a fave no. 4 kit.


On the back of the card, I used the “wishing you” template from the holiday greetings no. 1 kit and edited the text to include a personal message.


There are several places you can print your own holiday or new year’s cards. Some online printers require a professional or wholesale account, but you can easily and inexpensively print your own at Persnickety Prints. Also, I always check to see if an online printer has an “upload your own design” option.

Make your edits in Photoshop or Photoshop Elements, save your file as a JPEG and upload your design – front and back – to your printer of choice. It’s really simple once you get the hang of it, and if you make a few changes here and there, your cards will look entirely unique.

We’re in the middle of an international move, so I won’t be blogging regularly about design until after we’re settled in our new home. In the meantime, you can follow what’s happening with me over on Instagram or (less frequently, for now) on my blog. You can see my recent Project Life work here. Happy New Year!

xo, Catherine

Products used:holiday greetings no. 1holiday greetings no. 2holiday greetings no. 5december you are a fave no. 4.


Add a comment

*Please complete all fields correctly

Related Posts

Posted by contributor | January 2, 2018
DIY desk calendar
Caylee here. It's been a year and oh how I have missed you! I'm back on the paislee press CT after a hiatus while adjusting to the extra baby human in...
Posted by contributor | December 12, 2017
My Minimal Approach to Documenting December
Hi there! It’s Catherine here with some thoughts on how to approach documenting the holidays. If you’ve been following along with Paislee Press in recent years, then you’ve no doubt...
Posted by contributor | November 14, 2017
Step-by-Step DIY for Friendsgiving Menu and Place Cards
As a kid, I used to love writing place cards for holiday dinners. Those little details make a holiday meal extra-festive, even if they’re a little old-fashioned. This year, we’re...