Hats Off Graduation Announcement Special Prize Winners

It’s already November, but designs these great can be appreciated all-year-round. Our Hats Off Graduation Announcement Challenge was all about creating fun, unusual, and memorable graduation announcements. It may have taken a few extra semesters of deliberation and anticipation, but we think that makes this graduating class of special prizes all the more well-deserved! Congratulations to the designers whose designs won in each of our categories below – we give you all straight As in amazing announcements!

Can’t Pick Just One Award for the best multi-photo design

Long Road” by Carrie ONeal

“Long Road” has both beautiful design and lots of photos. Carrie’s layered text is clean and unusual, but still lets the customer’s photos stand out. We love the concept – the photos from little girl to grad emphasize what a long road graduation is.

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Deck the Office Business Holiday Challenge Special Prize Winners

In the Deck the Office Business Holiday Card Challenge, we asked the Minted community to design non-photo holiday cards that were modern and fresh (as always), but also universally appealing and clean enough for a professional business. That’s no easy feat! So the community got down to business to create a beautiful collection of business holiday cards that strike that balance between pretty and professional. Congratulations to the designers below, whose designs were the best in our specific categories!

 

Minimalist Award for the best simple, minimalist design

Swatch Wreath” by chica design “Swatch Wreath” really fits the bill for our Minimalist Award. Angela’s succinct copy, clean layout, and crisp white background make this one simple, sweet design. Her swatch wreath is modern and unconventional, while still being bright and festive. This is the perfect card for any creative group! Runner Ups: “Structured Greetings” by Jennifer Wick | “Happy-Go-Lucky” by Up Up Creative | “A Little Holiday Peace” by Kim Dietrich Elam

 

Cool Colors Award for the best design featuring blue or green colors

Joyful Reindeer” by Laura Bolter

We love how Laura embraced unique geometrics in “Joyful Reindeer.” Her background mosaic of blues and greys gives off a feeling of soft falling snow. The softness of those colors and lines allows her sharp, bold reindeer to pop right off the page. Runner Ups: “Simple Peace” by Sarah Brown | “Patchwork” by Ellis | “Mountain Pine” by Alex Elko Design

 

Making Spirits Bright Award for the best design that’s a lot of fun

The Gang’s All Here!” by Unless Someone Like You “The Gang’s All Here” made us all smile the second we saw it in submission – it’s sure to make anyone’s spirits bright! What a fun, friendly twist on a business holiday card. We love how each of Leslie’s illustrated carolers has his or her own distinct personality. The customizable speech bubbles allow you to send a message in a very whimsical way. Runner Ups: “Retro Cheer” by nocciola design | “Holiday Infographics” by Frooted Design | “Off the Charts” by Stacey Hill

 

Typography Award for the best typographical design

Good Cheer & Happy New Year” by Serenity Avenue Ashley lets her type do all the talking with this retro design. Her various typefaces blend together so perfectly—they were meant to be! The variety gives this card a lot of visual interest, while the textured champagne glass and marbled bubbles lend a bit of good-natured celebration. Runner Ups: “Glad Tidings” by Ann Gardner | “Happiness for All” by root beer float | “Dotted i” by kelli hall  

 

Flora Award for the best botanical design

Luminosity” by Griffinbell Studio Our Flora Award goes to Lynn’s “Luminosity” because of the unexpected twist on her botanical elements. It’s interesting how she achieves such a sense of greenery simply through the shape and placement of her otherwise very minimalist leaves. The snowflake-like star is a modern approach to holiday botanicals. Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “Peace Love Happiness” by Melanie Severin | “Festive Banner” by trbdesign | “Burst” by Monica Schafer | “Rustic Season’s Greetings” by Gakemi Art+Design

 

Company Pride Award for the best design that displays a company name in a unique way

All the Trimmings” by Frooted Design

All of Tanya’s elements seem so thoughtful and intentionally placed to bring your company name to the forefront – her square format, large round seal, and symmetrical garnishes all draw your eye to the center of the card. At the same time, her curved type and delicate pine and mistletoe trimmings create an overall feeling of holiday cheer. Runner Ups: “A Venny Merry Christmas” by Bonjour Berry | “Typewriter” by VOSS  | “Greeting Tag” by Snow and Ivy

 

Text with a Twist Award for the best design that uses curvilinear text to create unique shapes or unusual layouts

Wreath and Ribbon” by Laura Condouris

Laura has a knack for the delicate and beautiful. In this design, she uses subtle curvilinear text to complement the soft curve of her lovely illustrated wreath and ribbon banner. We love how clearly you can see Laura’s strokes and outlines. The result is a very personal feeling in a business holiday card. Runner Ups: “Vintage Ornament” by Hooray Creative | “Pine Cones” by Snow and Ivy

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Joy to the World Special Prize Winners

We’re excited to continue our Joy to the World Holiday Card Challenge announcements with our special prize winners! Special prizes call attention to the best designs in specific categories. The winners below stand out among the more than 2,600 designs in a variety of categories. From humor to minimalism, specific design elements to overall vision, each winner speaks to a very different, unique theme. Congratulations, winners!

Vision Award for the most unique holiday card in the challenge that breaks new ground but still conveys the cheer and spirit of the holiday season

Merry Modern” by Sarah Curry

Sarah’s “Merry Modern” is a vision in neon! We love her very modern diagonal stripe and the unusual green overlay. The classic black text on a white background provides a perfect balance.

Runner Ups: “Red Abstract” by Moglea | “O Tannenbaum” by 2birdstone | “Trio” by Wondercloud Design | “Ombre Tidings” by Paper Dahlia

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The Top 10 Joy to the World Holiday Winners

This is the moment that we all look forward to every year. Today, as we reveal the top results of our 5th annual holiday card challenge, I can’t help but stop to think about just how talented and diverse our community is. I believe that the Minted community is the strongest community of designers and artists in the world. The 10 designs below have been curated as the best of over 2,600 designs by thousands of designers, customers, and fans from around the world.

These designs are the work of a range of Minties, from some who participated in their very first holiday challenge to seasoned designers. Their designs are not only beautiful, but also very different from each other—it’s a testament to the range of talents and tastes that makes our community the very best. With that, I give you the top 1-10 ranked designs. Congratulations, designers!

1st Place Winner: “Be Merry Berries” by Angela Marzuki

We could not have been more thrilled to see that “Be Merry Berries” was voted as the first place holiday card design. Angela takes the cake with our grand prize of $7,000, the largest we’ve ever awarded. This design is a true work of art. From her mod berries to her subtle shadows and textures, Angela’s design is absolutely beautiful. We shared the news with Angela this morning. See her reaction here:

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The Top 11-20th Joy to the World Holiday Winners

Today, I’m happy to announce the 11-20th ranked designs from our Joy to the World challenge. Every year, we see tremendous growth in the Minted community and this year in no exception! Looking through the designs below, it’s easy to see why they rated so highly among a staggering 2,700 submissions. It’s all in the details – the unusual layouts, exceptional illustrations, and unique ways to incorporate customer photos. My congratulations to the creative minds behind these beautiful designs!

11th Place: “Rustic Joy” by Hooray Creative

Kristy’s “Rustic Joy” is a perfect example of a card that achieves that tricky balance between beautifully constructed design elements and a large customer photo. We love her hand-drawn pine elements that are delicate enough to let your family photo stand out.

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Joy to the World Holiday Challenge: The Top 21-40th Place Winners

After a long summer of holiday submissions, voting, and file requests, I could not be more excited to kick off our Joy to the World winners’ announcements with our top 21-40 winners, as ranked by the community of customers, designers, fans, and friends. Last year, we were blown away by the 2,206 entries we received. This year, you outdid yourselves yet again with an incredible 2,658 submissions. The quality and strength of those nearly 2,700 designs is a true testament not only to the wonderful talent of the community as a whole, but also to the accomplishment of the top 21-40 designs below.

Thank you so much to everyone who put yourself out there by submitting a design and providing invaluable critique and feedback to your fellow community members. Thank you also to everyone who helped determine the winners by voting in not one, but two rounds, to make the process as fair and as accurate as possible. Your participation, support, and hard work are what makes Minted the source for the freshest, most unique designs on paper. Without further ado, I give you the top 21-40th place winners. Congratulations to our first batch of holiday winners!

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The Top 3 Business Holiday Card Winners

We’re so excited to kick off the 2012 holiday season with the top 3 winners of our first ever Deck the Office Business Holiday Card Challenge! Our design community went to work to create fresh, modern, stylish designs that were also simple and clean enough for the most professional businesses.

First Prize: City Flurry Business Holiday Cards by Wondercloud Design

City Flurry Holiday Business Cards

Olivia’s snowy skyline and cool colors create the perfect contemporary holiday card. We love the way her delicate lines over color-blocked buildings provide a unique twist on a cityscape while the minimalist background and clean text let the company name and cityscape really stand out.

Second Prize: Holiday Berries Business Holiday Cards by Jana Volfova

Holiday Berries Business Holiday Cards

Holiday Berries is whimsically beautiful! Jana’s textured background gives the design a bit of depth while her sparkling berries and bold, yet understated lettering strike the perfect balance between pretty and professional.

Third Prize: Greetings of the Season Buisness Holiday Cards by Jennifer Wick

Greetings of the Seasons Business Holiday Cards

We love Jen’s winter florals! Her warm, inviting colors capture the holiday spirit in a subtle way. As always, Jen makes beautiful hand-lettering look completely effortless.

Congratulations to all of our winners! The top 30-rated designs are all winners, so check them out here. And get excited for more holiday announcements!

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It’s Party Time! Kid’s Birthday Party Invitation Challenge Special Prize Winners

If there’s one thing we’re sure of, it’s that Mini-Minties love to party! Kids’ birthdays should be over-the-top special. So we asked our design community to design children’s birthday party invitations for everything from first birthdays to Sweet Sixteens. Just like their parents, these budding design-aficionados want invites that are fun, fresh, and unique. The special prize winners below really took that to heart! Congratulations, winners!

Snapshot Award for the best design incorporating a photo of the birthday boy or girl

Big One” by Hailey Myziuk

Hailey’s design shouts “one” in a big way! We love the big, bold lettering with the delicate type and color palette. What really strikes us is the very clever, unique way that Hailey incorporates a photo of your little one.

Runner Ups (clockwise from left): “Look” by ERAY | “Oh What Fun” by The Social Type | “Rosie the Raccoon” by nocciola design | “Confection” by Kristie Kern | “Happy Elleventh!” by Wendy Fessler

Variation on a Theme Award for the best design for a themed party

Spa Party” by Cecile Paper Lounge

Now this is one theme we can all get behind! We immediately fell in love with Cecile’s adorable illustrations and with how she fully embraces her theme. From the masks and cucumbers to the sweet flowers and delicate scalloped edge, every detail seems fit for a day of pampering.

Runner Ups: “The Dude Junior” by kelli hall | “Yo Ho Ho!” by Susan Asbill | “Howdy Party” by Heather Francisco | “Circus Seal” by Wendy Van Ryn

Text with a Twist Award for the best design that uses curvilinear text to create unique shapes or unusual layouts

Talk about a Sweet Sixteen!” by hannahcloud DESIGN

Doesn’t this design make you wish you could do your sweet sixteen all over again? We love Hannah’s bright, cheerful colors straddling the white background and the photo. Her overlapping, organic speech bubbles give the design so much life and energy.

Runner Ups: “Over the Rainbow” by kelli hall | “Secret Garden” by Ana Gonzalez | “Whimsical Ribbon” by Abby McElfresh

Birthday Baby Award for the best design for a first birthday party

A Year of Firsts” by Ana Gonzalez

We love how Ana’s “Year of Firsts” isn’t just a party invitation; it’s a tribute to your little one’s whole first year of life! What a clever way to share so many firsts with family and friends. Not to mention how well she fits all that information in with a clean, structured layout.

Runner Ups: “Endless Fun” by Momo | “Paper Circus” by Wondercloud Design | “Cloudy with a Chance of Fun” by kelli hall | “One Happy Day” by The Occasional Hello

Pre-K Play Award for the best design for a boy or girl ages 3-5

Flying High” by Susie Allen

This is one refined little monster! We absolutely love Susie’s adorable illustration. Her subtle textures, quirky shapes, and loveably preppy accents make this one very adorable invitation. Perfect for any little monster who’s sure to let loose at the next birthday party.

Runner Ups (clockwise from bottom left): “Roaring Good Time” by Serenity Avenue | “What a Doll!” by Heather Francisco | “Pretty Little Five” by Kayla Grunder | “Cakeasaurus” by Pistols | “We’ve Got Our Hands Full” by Waui Design

It’s Elementary Award for the best design for a boy or girl ages 6-9

Pinata Surprise” by The Factorie

There’s always something so exciting about a piñata and we love Carla’s spin on it. Her colorful piñata balances perfectly with her minimal background and refined type. The little pieces of candy and the vague promise for an afternoon of surprises build the anticipation in such a fun way!

Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “space-bot” by nocciola design | “Cecilia” by Paper and Parcel | “Out of this World” by Amber Barkley | “Big Splash!” by jenincmyk | “groaaar” by cecile paper lounge | “The All-Star” by Jennifer Wick

Tweeny Bopper Award for the best design for a tween girl or boy ages 10-12

Super Party” by snickerdoodles

It’s easy to imagine your tween being incredibly excited about this invite! Lori’s bold type, sharp skyline, determined superhero, and rough texture combine to form such a lively design. We love the block text against the off-kilter layout.

Runner Ups: “Gone Camping” by Kathleen Niderhauser | “Fiesta!” by Susie Allen | “Secret Agent” by Kayla King

Teen Dream Award for the best design for a teenage girl or boy ages 13-16

Sun Sand + Surf” by Laura Hankins

What teen doesn’t dream of a beach party? Laura always strikes that perfect balance between lots of beautifully bold design elements and a very clean, structured design. Her fun type fits perfectly into her illustrated sun, sand, and surf.

Runner Ups: (top row) “Watercolor Strokes” by Shari Margolin | “Sweet Sixteen” by Paper Dahlia | (bottom row) “Sweet Type” by Hooray Creative | “One Night Only” by Inky Livie | “Beachy Style” by trbdesign

Seeing Double Award for the best design for twins of all ages

Twin Voice” by VOSS

Sara certainly has a knack for using photos in fun, clever ways. We love how she lets each twin have his or her own voice within this invitation. The minimal design elements and clean text also let the kids’ photos really stand out – just as it should be!

Runner Ups: “Vintage Stripes” by Simone Klein | “Double Cupcake Fun” by Serenity Avenue | “Pandamonium” by 2BSquared Designs | “Numbered Block” by Amber Barkley

Castles to Caves Award for the best design for either a princess or a superhero party

Super Birthday Girl” by Tara Lilly Studio

We love a super girl and Tara Lilly’s is one of the coolest we’ve seen. Her comic book details like the dotted background, bright colors, and flashy shapes give a lot of personality to her design.

Runner Ups: “Fairy Stars” by Kimberly FitzSimons | “Up Up and Away!” by Jennifer Wick | “Party Princess” by VOSS | “Our Little Princess” by Tereza Sasinkova Lukasova

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Books to Bottles Baby Shower Invitation Challenge Special Prize Winners

Who doesn’t love a baby shower? The gifts, the excitement, the anticipation! We asked the Minted Community to design unconventional baby shower invitations for modern moms-to-be. We were looking for chic designs to re-invent the traditional shower invite. We can’t get over the number of adorable, edgy, beautiful, and truly surprising designs that came in! Now it’s time to shower those Minties with some love. We’re thrilled to announce the special prize winners for the following prizes. Congratulations, winners!

Avant Garde Award for the best ahead-of-its-time invitation design

Baby’s Due Date” by Serenity Avenue

We couldn’t resist giving our “Avant Garde Award” to this retro library-card design. Ashley created something truly novel with this one (pun intended). We love her attention to detail from the off-kilter, seemingly stamped months and numbers to the hand-drawn look of the circles marking the baby’s due date.

Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “Backyard Barbecue” by Susie Allen | “Coming Soon” by GeekInk | “Letter Boy” by Homeseed Paper | “Ride On Over” by snickerdoodles

Cutest Award for the cutest invitation design that is still modern

Bonjour Bebe” by Pistols

Where do we even start with this one? “Bonjour Bébé” is absolutely adorable. We wish we could say it has a certain “je ne sais quoi,” but we know exactly what it is that we love so much! Her delicate flowers, precociously posh little baby girl, and sparing but prominent use of the French language push this design over the edge for us.

Runner Ups: “Heart & Bow” by Erin Pescetto | “Sailboat” by Olive and Violet | “Eats & Treats” by Noma and Dolly

Baby Makes 3 Award for the best invitation design representing the new threesome

Family Picture Wall” by Alethea and Ruth

“Family Picture Wall” does a beautiful job incorporating mom, dad, and baby into one cohesive design. Rachel’s lovely mix of bows, pins, hand-drawn frames, and varied text gives the design a personal, casual feel. We love the sense of anticipation in her adorable framed onesie, representing the little one to come.

Runner Ups: “Yellow and Blue Make Green” by VOSS | “Sweet Seahorses” by Oma N. Ramkhelawan | “Baby Makes Three” by Jamie Bryant | “Welcome to the Next” by Sandy Pons

Animals Award for the best invitation design incorporating an animal or other creature

Nesting Birds” by j.bartyn

Cambria’s “Nesting Birds” stands out for a few reasons. Her midcentury color palette and clean type make this a design for an incredibly chic, sophisticated shower. At the same time, her stylized flora and fauna are so nostalgically friendly and familiar. Not to mention the fact that she illustrated this design using an oil ink printmaking technique. We love a shower invitation with depth and personality!

Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “Via Stork” by Jana Volfova | “Stylish Stork and Funky Baby” by chocomocacino | “Babies are from Paris” by Ana Sousa | “Mouse Showers” by kadie foppiano | “Ready to Pop” by nocciola design | “Beat the Drum” by Cecile Paper Lounge | “Baby Elephant” by Pistols

Over-the-Top-Pretty Award for the prettiest invitation design

Floral Shower” by Bethany Anderson

Isn’t it obvious? We love Bethany’s beautiful, overflowing florals because they strike the perfect balance with her clean shapes and simple color palette. “Floral Shower” is over the top pretty, but it’s not overwhelming. This is the perfect shower invite for a feminine, delicate soon-to-be mom.

Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “Oh Baby” by Lina Goldberg | “Oh Baby Florals” by Griffinbell Studio | “Petit Bebe” by Kristie Kern | “Baby Love” by Rebekah Disch | “Mariposas” by Wondercloud Design

Text with a Twist Award for the best design that uses curvilinear text to create unique shapes or unusual layouts with the mom’s or parents’ names

Cloud Nine” by robin ott design

Robin’s “Cloud Nine” just makes us feel good! Her beautifully detailed illustrations could have you staring at this design for minutes on end. Her use of curvilinear text is subtle, but perfectly incorporated and helps push the eye up, up to cloud nine. We love the way Robin sets the stage for the excitement that will come with the new baby.

Runner Ups (clockwise from top left): “Bold Baby” by a la amore | “The Big Reveal” by Cheer Up Cherup | “New Blooms” by Sarah Curry | “Rock-a-Bye” by Betta

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The Moms, Dads, and Grads Journal Challenge Special Prize Winners!

Cue the music, light the lights, the time has finally come! The Minted team has been hard at work all summer picking special prize winners from lots of our past challenges. We’re thrilled to say that this post is the first of many, so get ready to relive some of the most outstanding designs from this year’s challenges!

We kick it all off with special prizes from our Moms, Dads, and Grads Journal Challenge. We asked the Minted community to design fresh, modern journals that would make memorable gifts. Congratulations to all the winners and runner-ups whose designs stood out in the following categories:

Snapshot Award for the best design incorporating a photo

Eat Sleep Poop” by VOSS

This is one design that I’m sure lots of people can relate to! Sara’s “Eat Sleep Poop” is both adorable and hilarious. The type is thoughtfully set, perfect for overlaying a large photo of your little one.

Runner Ups: “The Story of You” by guess what? | “Super Dad” by Ana Gonzalez | “dad&me” by Jessica Kwok

Can’t Pick Just One Award for the best multi-photo design

Chalkboard Memories” by Jennifer Pace

There’s something so casual and personal about this journal. From the personalizable family seal to the splash of Washi tape to the chalkboard captions, every detail is so thoughtful. Jennifer’s journal is perfect for capturing memories.

Runner Ups: “Retro Stars” by Designkandy – Simone Klein | “Confessions of a First Time Mom” by Ana Gonzalez

Text with a Twist Award for the best design that uses curvilinear text to create unique shapes or unusual layouts.

Super Mom” by Smudge Design

Renee’s “Super Mom” is simple and sweet. We love the muted background and the very official “Mom” nameplate. Our favorite detail is the type below the name listing the heroic jobs of your supermom.

Runner Ups: “Suzette’s Flowers” by Sharon Rowan | “Run to Win” by Frooted Design | “Polka” by Stacey Meacham

Congratulations again to the winners!

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