This post was sponsored by minted.com. All opinions expressed are my own.
Recently my brother and sister-in-law welcomed a sweet little baby girl into the world. Everyone is over the moon, and Daisie’s arrival feels like the start of a new era.
Bringing a new baby home is such a happy event. Every little task is a milestone. I wanted to join in the fun, so I offered to help my sister-in-law, Maura, create birth announcements.
We used minted.com to design them, and in this post I share a few tips based on what we learned.
Start by Browsing the Designs
This helps you get an overview of what is available and a sense of what you like – be it classic, simple, sweet, fun.
The search filters help narrow down your options.
Browsing the designs can also help you:
1. Test Your Photo
If you already have a photo you would like to use, you can plug that photo into the “find it fast” feature to see how it looks in multiple card designs and with various text placements. This is a quick way to pinpoint your options.
And if you have not chosen a photo yet, browsing the designs will help you decide which photos would work best in the designs that you like.
2. Decide on Wording
Writers block? Not sure what tradition dictates? Not to worry, the card designs all have wording samples that serve as a starting point.
Wording for baby announcements can be fairly simple – as in this example.
3. Become Familiar With Time-Saving Options
Maura was happy to discover that the birth announcement she chose offered a coordinating thank you card.
This provided a unified look and saved time over having to browse for a thank you card as a separate step.
Photographing Baby Yourself
Shortly after Daisie came home, Auntie Heidi (that’s me!) brought over her nice DSLR camera and tripod to take photos of Daisie to use in the birth announcements.
And that is when Auntie Heidi learned that some things are best left to a professional photographer.
But one of my photographs was chosen for the thank you card.
And I did learn a few things:
1. The Basics
Use your best camera – a DSLR if you have one – and a tripod if you can. Use natural or deflected light, not a flash. For good natural light, try taking the photos near a large window. Save your photos in high resolution, large file sizes.
2. The Background
I didn’t notice until after the photo shoot that most of my backgrounds were too strong. To feature a baby properly, the background should be as neutral as possible – like in this example.
3. Just for Fun: Try Using Continuous Shooting
It seemed to me that Daisie’s expression was constantly changing, even when she was asleep. I tried to capture her cutest expressions – only to miss them by a nanosecond.
So as an experiment, I set my camera (which was on a tripod) on “self-timer: continuous.” This worked well since the delay of the self-timer eliminated any camera shake after pressing the shutter. Then the camera automatically took ten shots in quick succession.
Even though the shots weren’t used in the announcement, the variety was fun. I especially like this one, which I call “talk to the fist.”
(I hate to state the obvious, but Daisie is quite advanced for a newborn.)
4. The Power of Black and White
We wound up choosing a sweet black and white photo taken by a talented photographer at the hospital. There is just something timeless about black and white photos.
Customizing the Design
Once we had chosen a photo and an announcement design, the fun really started. We could choose from a variety of shapes. We could also choose the font type, size, and color, and the format (flat or folded).
Here is an example of the birth announcement design we chose, which is called “Editor.”
And here it is after we customized it.
I think the pink photo border looks beautiful around the black and white photo. You can see that we customized the font color, size, and type, and chose a scalloped frame. We made the same font choices for the thank you card to keep the look cohesive.
The back of the birth announcement provided more choices: A pattern for a finished look, or blank for a place to hand-write individual messages. But Maura went with the third option of adding another photo and a printed message. This was also a time-saving feature since it eliminated the need for handwritten messages while still adding a personal touch.
The envelopes were also customizable with color and liner options. We took advantage of the free recipient addressing for the envelopes, and they look beautiful.
It’s always a pleasant surprise when I find something like this in my mailbox.
I enjoy social media but I feel that, for marking life’s milestones, nothing will ever compare to the tangible satisfaction of holding a fine-quality announcement in my hand. The text might not say it, but the message is clear: “It’s official – you now have a beautiful niece!”
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