How to make a (dolly) Christmas Card – Step by step tutorial

The holiday season has officially began and it’s time to get into the festive mood! The doll community has several lovely holiday traditions like photography challenges, themed parties or gift exchanges, and my personal favorite is sending Christmas cards. Every year a lot of you prepare paper and/or digital versions of their cards and shares them with friends both in human size and in dolly size (1/6 scale). I especially love receiving the cards by post and I treasure all of them (please find the photo of the cards I received last year at the end of the post). If you’d like to download my Christmas cards, click to get the JPG (here) and PDF (here) files.

How to make a dolly Christmas card?

1. Types of cards you can make

  • store-bought cards
    You can simply buy a holiday card at a store, fill it in and sent it to your friends by post. This saves you time on designing the card.
  • a photo as a card
    You can take a holiday-themed photo of your dolls and develop it in a professional photo store or simply print it at home. It might be more expensive to develop the photos in a store but the quality would usually be better.
  • custom-made cards
    You can use an online template or design the card from scratch yourself using a free app like Canva. You can make a custom card physically as well by for example painting or drawing on a piece of paper
  • professionally printed cards
    Once you have your a photo or a design, you can order printed cards in your preferred size and format from a printing company. This is the most expensive version that would also ensure the best quality of your cards.

2. Online cards vs. paper cards

In my opinion paper cards are the way to show your friends and loved ones how much you appreciate and care about them. Sending them definitely involves effort, from all the preparations, writing the text inside and putting in envelopes to going to the post office. I’m truly grateful for all the cards I’m receiving. As I’m holding them in my hands, it always gives me a boost of positive energy. : )

Online cards have several advantages and I highly recommend preparing them even if you are set on sending the cards by post. Please bear in mind that it’s not always possible to send cards to some countries. If you have a lot of friends, you might not be able to send cards to all of them even if you wanted to (especially if they are based all over the world). Some people might not feel comfortable sharing their postal addresses with you either. If you share your card online, then your friends can print it as they wish.

3. Be mindful of a time frame

Once you decide on what type of cards you’d like to make, you need to think about when to start your preparations so that you can send the cards in time.

For example, you might want to prepare a diorama to take a holiday-themed photo for your card, then edit the photo, then design the cards… If you’d like to develop the photos or have your card printed by the printing company, keep in mind that this service will take a few days as well.

I usually start working on my Christmas cards end of October, and it takes me about 3 weeks to have everything ready (as you can imagine it’s not my only job and I prepare the cards in my spare time only).

4. When to send dolly Christmas cards?

When it comes to sending postal cards to your friends from the doll community on Instagram, I would highly recommend sending international cards by post from mid to end of November, and domestic cards end of November or first week of December. Why? I believe it’s better to be too early than too late. First of all, the post is extremely busy around the holidays, and the closer to the Christmas Eve, the longer the packages take to arrive. Also, when the postmen have a lot of packages to deliver, there is an increased risk of them losing your package in transit. What’s more, most people begin to post holiday-themed photos from the 1st of December and therefore they take them even earlier. This means that if you’d like your cards to be featured in your friends’ posts, you need to make sure they receive them in time.

If you are only making an online version of the card, make sure it’s ready to share with your friends at the beginning of December.

5. How do I make my Christmas cards? Step by step tutorial

  1. Take a holiday-themed photo.
    My first step was to take a holiday-themed photo of me and my mini-me doll. The funny part was dressing up in red and green and wearing Santa hats when it was… end of October ; ) Once the photo was taken I edited it in Snapseed App on my phone.
  2. Design the card in the Canva App.
    Canva is a free and very user-friendly graphic design app that you can use on your phone and on your computer. I use it mostly to prepare posters for online events and videos/reels covers. As you can see on the screenshots below, I added a holiday-themed background, I put my photo in a circle and I added the text. This was actually less complicated than one might think!
  3. Order the cards from the printing company.
    Once the design was ready, I downloaded the jpg file and went to the website of the printing company. I chose the 10×15 cm classic card format, uploaded my picture there and wrote the text of the wishes inside the card. I placed my order and I received the printed cards in about a week.
  4. Print and cut the 1/6 scale mini-version of the card.
    I used my own printer at home to print 1/6 scale cards for dioramas / dollhouses. I cut them out with scissors and wrote little notes inside.
  5. Gather the addresses.
    At that point I started contacting my friends to make sure I had all the addresses and they were all up-to-date. It took a few days to send all the messages and receive the replies.
  6. Address the envelopes and write inside the cards.
    As I had over 40 cards and envelopes to prepare, this took me a few hours.
  7. (Optional) add a little gift.
    I usually send a little gift with my Christmas cards like a 1/6 scale Santa hat, a scarf or gingerbread cookies for dolls. Small items like these can be found in stores where the holiday decorations are sold or online, for example on Aliexpress.
  8. Send the cards.
    Once the packages were ready, I went to the local post office to send them. I used the priority service to make sure they reached the recipients as soon as possible.

Download my 2022 dolly Christmas Card!

Feel free to download my 2022 Christmas Card by clicking for a JPG (here) and PDF (here) files. You can see how the front and the back of the card looks below. If you decide to print it and use in your holiday diorama, please tag me @margaretanndolls on Instagram so I can see it : )

P. S. And here are some of the cards I received in 2021. Thank you so much to everyone who sent them!

Happy Holidays my dear friends!

Wishing you all the best,
Margaret Ann

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Aya w Świecie Lalek
    6 January 2023 at 00:00

    OOo, nawet nie wiedziałam, że masz bloga. Ja również prowadzę bloga od 2015. Fajnie, będę sobie zaglądać, bo jednak jestem zdecydowaną fanka blogosfery niż Instagrama, gdzie wszystko gna za lajkami i ginie w natłoku licznych informacji. Tu zawsze można wrócić i na spokojnie przejrzeć. Pozdrawiam. Iga/Aya w Świecie Lalek

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