The Holidays may seem like a ways away still, but every year the same thing happens: you blink, November is almost over, and you’re suddenly scrambling to get all your holiday to-do’s done. Why not make this the year you get a jumpstart, and save yourself the stress in December?
If there’s one item you may want to get working on sooner rather than later, it’s holiday greeting cards – especially if you’re planning to send them off by mail to friends and family. Rather than picking out a generic set of cards to share, our Photolab can help you create unique holiday cards that are completely personalized.
Finding the Right Photo
Lots of people share a photo or two of their family when they send out their annual holiday cards. It’s a chance to show your loved ones how your family has grown over the past year. You can choose a favourite photo you have from this year, or plan a fun photo shoot with your family to snap a special ‘holiday card’ photo. Get creative and have a theme, like everyone wearing red, or have some fun holiday props on-hand, like pre-wrapped gifts. If you get an early snowfall this year, why not take advantage and run outside for a wintery group photo?
You can also turn your old Christmas photographs into digital copies that can be featured on your greeting cards. We can digitize those photos for you with our Photo Scanning Box service. Just pick up a box from your local London Drugs Photolab, fill it with all your print photos, and bring it back the Photolab where our technicians will digitize the photos at high resolution. Your print photos will then be returned to you, along with a USB flash drive storing all your special photos. Then you can simply upload them to our Photolab website or one of our in-store Photolab kiosks to get started with customizing your holiday greeting cards.
Pick a Card Style
Our Photolab’s user-friendly website and in-store kiosks give you every opportunity to customize, which means you have lots of options when it comes to the style of your cards. First, choose between either flat or folded cards. Flat cards have an extensive list of options, including single-sided, double-sided, and postcards. You can even pick a postcard template that is ready to stamp and drop in the mail. If you’d prefer a traditional folded card, we have both regular and premium folded cards in both 5×7 and 7×5.
We are the only local Photolab to use premium card stocks, so your greeting cards are guaranteed to be entirely unique. To make your holiday greeting cards truly stand out, our Photolab also offers 6 specialty papers in addition to our card stock: linen natural white, linen white, matte soft white, matte white, shimmer silver, and shimmer soft gold.
Once you’ve picked your greeting card style, you’ll then be able to choose a template. We have a wide variety of themes available, including Christmas card templates and Hanukkah card templates. Or if you’re feeling extra creative, feel free to go complete-DIY with a blank card.
Write a Personalized Message
To make your cards as personal as possible, add text to any of our greeting cards. You can choose your preferred font and colour, and customize where it will appear. Type a simple season’s greetings that you can easily send out to all of your family and friends, or customize each card with a unique and personal message. Our LDExperts recommend signing the cards by hand after it’s printed, for an extra special touch.
Ready to get a jumpstart on your holiday greeting cards? You can save 10% on your order of greeting cards, calendars and photo books if you order between October 27th and November 1st, 2017. Click here to get started!
If you need some help creating your holiday greeting cards, our Photolab Experts can answer any questions you may have, and walk you through the ordering process. Just visit us at any London Drugs location, in the Photolab department.
Valentines Day 2016 will soon be upon us, and once again the Photolab is here to bail you out—only this time, like never before! If you’ve previously visited this space you are no doubt well aware that personalized greeting cards, created with actual photos that have true meaning to the recipient, are absolutely perfect for hitting it out of the park on occasions such as this. Now, thanks to the Photolab’s new in-store kiosks and website, these Valentine’s Day life-savers are more customizable than ever. Allow me to demonstrate the ease of making a personalized greeting card using the brand-spanking-new in-store kiosks available at all London Drugs locations:
Since these fancy kiosks are so new, I thought I would demonstrate how to use them to make a greeting card. So let’s do as the button says and get started!
With the final days of school coming to an end for the summer, it may be time to start thinking about how you would like to document your school memories. For parents or students who are looking to thank their teachers or coaches with a year-end gift, photo gifts are a great way to document those memories. The London Drugs photolab has come up with some ideas to capture end of the school year moments for teacher mementos, sports teams, or even school fundraisers.
For those students who learned to cook and create their own recipes in home economics class, a class cookbook is a creative way to document your favourite class dishes. A year-end cookbook can be designed from a compilation of each student’s favourite recipe. Gift your teacher with a custom made cookbook, or create one for each student to take home. Don’t forget to create a customized place mat to go along with your favourite cookbook recipes!
For students who may be transitioning from elementary school to high school or from high school to post secondary, memories of your past schooling can easily be documented in a scrapbook. These mini albums are perfect for sharing and will keep your memories safe for years to come.
Mouse pads are the perfect gift for teachers or coaches that love all things tech. Whether they are enjoying some down time on the computer, or researching the next topic to speak about in class, your teachers and coaches will be reminded of the great school memories through a personalized photograph printed on their office mouse pad.
Personalized clipboards are the perfect gift for active coaches, teachers, instructors, and group leaders. Print a photo on one side and add a personal message near the top or bottom of the board. Or, add a diagram of a soccer pitch, football field, baseball diamond, or hockey rink, which is perfect for coaches who illustrate plays and strategies with dry-erase markers.
Do you have team spirit? Show off your team’s skills by creating personalized trading cards for your teammates. Construct a 16 pack of trading cards to document your teammates stats, or create a 52 set of playing cards dedicated to each member of the team.
Wrap up the end of the school season with a personalized bookmark to capture your favourite memories. Collages of photos are a creative way to document the best moments from that year. For book club lovers, create a personalized bookmark for your favourite book buddy. Or, for an easier way to keep tabs on material in textbooks, think about gifting your teacher with a bookmark.
Photo puzzles are fun gifts ideas that are perfect for a variety of occasions. Give your teacher or coach something entertaining to do this summer by gifting them with a customized puzzle. Constructing the puzzle pieces will keep them occupied on summer vacations or rainy days at the cabin while also reminiscing over the memories of the school year.
For students that loved their ceramics class, why not give your teacher a personalized jewellery box to store all of their ceramics treasures? The interior of the jewellery box is lined with soft, white, felt and is perfect for safely storing rings, necklaces, and other treasured items. Choose a photograph to mount on top of the jewellery case – perhaps a picture of you and your teacher.
If keeping on track is a challenge for you, a calendar to keep tabs of school classes or school events might be a necessity. The photolab has a variety of calendar designs and sizes so you can easily fit your agenda in your purse or bag while on the go. You can even customize each month of the calendar with class photos and give it as a gift to your teacher at year end!
For those teachers or coaches that have made a lasting impression, send them a thank you for all their hard work. Make sure to document some of your best moments through a personalized photo on a custom-made greeting card, postcard or magnet.
To add to the Thank you card and a gift that takes no time but can be personalized as your teacher or coach wishes, consider a London Drugs gift card as thanks for all of their hard work over the year. The gift card can be used for polish and pampering in cosmetics, travel readiness in cameras and photography or work essentials in computers.
For more great gift ideas from photolab, make sure to visit the London Drugs photolab at your local London Drugs location, or online at photolab.londondrugs.com.
Well, the days of December are upon us, which means it’s time for another proactive holiday email. As always, I bring you good news, especially if you missed the nascent insanity that is “Black Friday”: there is still a vast selection of great gift options available from the Photolab. And you don’t need to elbow your way through a crushing mass of humanity to get them.
Photo gifts are fully customizable, highly personalized gifts that demonstrate that you truly know the recipients and enjoy sharing part of your life with them. Gifts that provide lasting value at a reasonable price. Best of all, gifts that are extremely easy to create using the Photolab software—and you don’t need to be a designer or tech expert to customize them to your taste.
Moments Photobooks: A wide variety of styles are available, from beautiful leather-bound hardcover to versatile, easily shareable softcover options. (See this post for a more in-depth review.)
Personalized calendars: Grandparents would rather receive a calendar filled with pics of the grandkids than pretty much any other gift on Earth. For the rest of us, a calendar containing images from recent vacations, or the year’s most memorable events, is a sure bet to lift spirits every day of 2015. And as I wrote in this post, building them is a snap—a great option if you’re pressed for time this season.
Personalized greeting cards: Now you can abolish those typical, generic greeting card packs to the Island of Unwanted Toys once and for all. No matter what you write in a personalized greeting card, the message they send is that you truly know and care about the recipient. Just as easy to create as a calendar using the Photolab software. Here’s a post that takes you through the process.
Now that we appear to be saddled with our dismal seasonal weather, it’s the perfect time to make yourself a hot chocolate and start browsing through your digital photo library for the perfect images to include. Because the more thought you put into your selection, the more the recipient will appreciate the gift.
Ok, sure…November may be a tad early for some when it comes to anything holiday-related. But here’s the good news (and it’s all good news): at no point during this post will I urge you to run out and buy something in order to ‘avoid the holiday rush.’ In fact, today’s topic is just the opposite: unique and personalized gifts you can create in the comfort of your own home.
London Drugs Photolab Home Edition software makes all of this leisurely gifting possible. Simply download and install it on your computer and start turning the best of your digital photo albums into the physical, tangible holiday gift of your choice, including:
E-cards are definitely simple. No argument here. Convenient, too. The problem, of course, is that everyone knows how simple they are, which is why people are generally underwhelmed when they receive them.
When it comes to something simple that makes people feel special, nothing beats on old-fashioned greeting card sent via good ol’ snail mail.
This one is fairly self-explanatory. Even though I probably know nothing about you, I am willing to bet that at some point in your life you’ve experienced one of the following:
One or more of these three unfortunate events has undoubtedly happened to every single camera owner on Earth since digital became the default mode of photography. Both (a) and (c) have happened to me personally. In the case of (c), it was during one of those once-in-a-lifetime events: my honeymoon, in Turkey. My camera couldn’t handle the near 40ºC Cappadocian heat and scrambled my SD card in protest. Once I got home I had to purchase an external SD reader and download special card-recovery software, and even with all that I was only able to recapture about 80% of them. In fact, it seems everyone has photo-loss story that’s as personal and unique as the pictures they’ve lost.
Despite the ubiquities of accidents, theft and storage failure, most people are still content to keep the vast majority of their images stored on cards and drives. After all, doing so is just so darn convenient that it lulls you into complacency. I actually know of people who’ve had multiple incidents of loss and failure, yet they continue to keep their images stored on their phone and/or storage media. Of course, the ‘cloud’ is becoming ever-more popular as a means of image storage. But how much does the average person really know about the cloud, and how loss-proof such solutions really are? Yes, when you upload your images to a massive provider like Google, Facebook or Yahoo!(Flickr), you can be reasonably certain that they know what they’re doing. But even amongst these behemoths, data wipeouts are not impossible. There is, however, a much more prevalent issue with cloud storage: the problem of ‘cloud sprawl’ (Copyright: me). I currently have images and various other files spread around at least six different cloud-based services: Google Drive, Flickr, Dropbox, iCloud, Facebook as well as others I barely remember. And even though I’m pretty organized when it comes to storage, I confess I no longer know for sure which of my important images are stored where. Most cloud users I know have this problem; you begin building a library on one cloud when suddenly a new cloud server pops up promising more convenience and access. You forsake your current cloud and start adding to the new one; and so on and so on, until your cloud storage system look more like a hoarder’s living room. While not as dramatic as outright data loss, cloud sprawl still becomes a pain when you’re trying to find your most important images. While it may seem counterintuitive, the most effective way to prevent image loss is to promptly turn your images into prints and keep them organized in photo books. This also offers the additional benefit of keeping your favourite photos handy, and in a format that lends itself very well to leisurely reflection.
Yes, I realize that prints are susceptible to things like fire and flood, overstimulated babies and dogs, and other forms of physical damage. I’m not saying you should delete your hard drive or cloud entirely. I’m just saying that these methods are not the 100% foolproof adamantium data vaults that we allow ourselves to believe they are; and that printing your photos as keepsakes is the best way to ensure all your bases are covered when it comes to preserving your images. As to what kind of photo book your prints should take, I happen to know where you can find a vast array of cool options…say, have I mentioned Book-It?