Holiday Photo Card Challenge: Special Prize Winners (Part 6)

Each year Minted hosts our highly anticipated holiday photo-card competition in search of the best holiday card designs. The results blew us away! Independent designers from all over the world stepped up to the challenge—we received an incredible 4,103 submissions from 481 artists. Thank you to everyone for participating!

Today, we’re happy to officially celebrate our last Special Prize winner—we had to keep this one under wraps as we waited for our magazine advertisements to come out for the holiday season!

Merry and Bright Award: For the card that would look best in a magazine advertisement—bold and highly visible, but extremely unusual and innovative while still conveying the holiday spirit.

“Peaceful Watercolor” by Lindsay Megahed

Lindsay blew us away with her “Peaceful Watercolor” design. It strikes the perfect balance of being bold and eye-catching, but also calm and serene. We love the holiday spirit it conveys, despite an untraditional and non-holiday color palette and the modern, askew placement of the photo. We featured this design in our magazine ads this year as a foil card (foil version here). And check it out below in a lovely ad featured in Martha Stewart Weddings. Congratulations, Lindsay, beautiful work!

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Holiday Photo Card Challenge: Surprising Our Winner!

Our annual holiday photo card challenge is always the biggest challenge of the year and holds a very special place in our hearts. So every year, we try to come up with a fun way to surprise the 1st place winner.

In 2012, we surprised Angela Marzuki by asking her to hop on a Skype call with us to discuss using Dropbox (video here). In 2013, we planned a would-be-routine Minted Meetup in Jill De Haan’s hometown, with our Founder & CEO Mariam Naficy as the surprise guest with the big news (see it here). This year, we switched things up just a bit. Watch the video below to see the surprise for winner Jennifer Wick and read all the details below!

We asked Jen to come out to San Francisco to attend a (non-existent) Minted Board Meeting and give feedback as a member of the Minted Community.

Meanwhile, we decorated our office with tons of bunting banners, balloons, crepe paper, and sweet treats in anticipation of her arrival. We invited all the employees in our SF office to write her a congratulatory note and come join in the surprise celebration.


Spotted: Minted Artist Kiana Mosley at West Elm

One of the main reasons we love partnering with West Elm is because they share our passion for supporting independent artists. Today, we spotted one of our Minted artists, the talented Kiana Mosley, on the cover of a recent West Elm catalog! Her print “Of Land and Sea I” is beautifully featured amid a mix of West Elm’s midcentury modern-style pieces.

See Kiana’s gorgeous print up close and purchase it right here. Minted regularly partners with West Elm on art challenges, where independent designers around the world are invited to submit their freshest, most modern art-print designs. The winning prints from the latest competition are now available online at West Elm as well as in stores. We’re so proud to have Kiana and all of our other winning artists representing Minted at West Elm.



Oh Happy Day! Kids’ Birthday Party Invite Challenge Special Prize Winners

By Jen Casebeer, Community Editor

Kids’ birthday party is one of our favorite categories! In the Oh Happy Day! Kids’ Birthday Party Invitation Challenge, we asked the Minted Design Community to design fun, fresh birthday party invitations that parents and kids would both love. We just love the result! The winners below stood out in one of our special prize categories. Congrats, winners!

Out of the Box Award for the freshest, most original party invitation you wouldn’t find anywhere other than Minted

Woodland Campout” by Grave Kreinbrink

Grace’s camping-inspired design has us ready to pack our backpacks! We love her illustrated forest from her stylized trees to her winding path and sweet little campfire. The off-kilter signs are such a unique way to provide all the details necessary to party!

Runners Up: “First Festival” by Phrosné Ras | “Did Someone Say Cake” by Amy George | “Mad Scientist” by Pretty Girl Designs


Holiday Challenge Winners’ Trip to San Francisco

Our Let it Snow! Holiday + New Year’s Photo Card Challenge is well underway and it has been so exciting seeing all your submissions come in! This year, like last year, our 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place winners will win a 2-day VIP trip to visit Minted Headquarters here in San Francisco (full details here).

The top 3 winners from last year’s ‘Oh What Fun’ Holiday Card Challenge came out for their own VIP trip last month and we had a great time showing them around the Minted office and our beautiful city. Here are a few highlights from our trip with Minted Designers Jill De Haan, Eric of GeekInk Design, and Karly of Oscar & Emma.

Eric, Jill, and Karly at that iconic spot!

Minted Community Artists are serious celebrities to everyone here in the Minted Office. Our employees were anxious to hear all about the visiting designers. Jill, Eric, and Karly were kind enough to answer lots of juicy questions from Minted employees in a friendly Q&A. We talking about everything from how they got started in design to their favorite (and least favorite) personal works and what their weirdest Pinterest boards are.


‘Twas the Night Before the Challenge…

Tomorrow is the big day! We’re launching the 2014 Holiday Challenge. If you are as excited as we are, you may very well not sleep tonight, but to help you dream of candy canes and gingerbread, we present to you a little video bedtime story as told by Elliot, our Community Design Lead and the man behind

We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it!

By popular demand, we’re pleased to share a closeup of Elliot’s cat sweater and the entire poem:

‘Twas the night before the challenge and all through the land,
not a snowflake was stirring, not a mitten on hand.

Jack hung the lights round the office with pride
To bring winters glow while the sun shone outside

The Merch team was nestled all snug in their desks
With visions of cards to assort in the annex

While Katy spun dreidels and whipped up a hot toddy
Jen and Madeline sent fruit cakes (a terrible hobby)

We’ve blasted the classics to make ourselves merry
Sinatra, King Cole and Mariam’s fave, Mariah Carey

We wove evergreen wreaths and warmed our hands by the printer
We’ve done all that we can to bring thoughts of winter!

But try as we may, try as we might,
something is missing, it just doesn’t feel right

Are our sweaters too boring? No, that can’t be it
Just look at this festive cat-themed knit!

What else can be done to bring christmas to spring?
I know what’s missing! I know just the thing!

We need photo cards, skinny wraps, backers and liners
The freshest new work from the world’s best designers

Now, Jennifer! Now Sarah! Now Laura and Erin!
On, Jessica! On Kelly! and both of the Erics!
Now Stephanie! Now Kimberly! Now Heather and Amy!
On, Ashley! On Katherine! and ALL of the Minties!

Now we just have to wait til’ the bright morning light
Happy Challenge to all, and to all a good night!


The Most Wonderful Time of the Year – Katy’s Hot Toddy and Spiced Apple Cider Recipes

This last idea for getting in the holiday spirit may be one of the simplest, make a holiday beverage!  The taste (and smell!) of these drinks always make me think of wintertime.

Hot Toddy (makes 1 serving)
  • 1 1/2 ounces whisky or bourbon (I’m using Bulleit® Rye)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 lemon
  • 1 cup hot water
  • a few whole cloves and/or a cinnamon stick
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Just for Kids Room Decor Challenge Special Prize Winners

By Jen Casebeer, Community Editor

In the Just for Kids Room Decor Challenge, we asked the Minted Community to design décor for kids’ rooms and nurseries. Every child dreams of having a room as unique as they are — from princesses and pirates to sports and stars, we were looking for décor that would help kids’ express themselves and create their perfect spaces. This was such a fun one! Congratulations to the special prize winners below who stood out in each of these categories:

Out of the Box Award for the freshest and most innovative take on room décor that you wouldn’t see anywhere but Minted

Globetrotter” by Lulaloo

We fell in love with Maria’s adorable boy on his magic paper airplane. We love every unique detail from her watercolor stripes to her very cute little aviator and his bug buddy.

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas – Holiday Wreath DIY

As our holiday challenge gets closer and closer everyday, we’re doing everything we can think of to help get our Minted Community designers in that holiday-card-creatin’ spirit! We’re hitting all the senses – we warmed things up with Jack’s holiday music playlist and filled your homes with the sweet winter smell of Cathy’s Gingerbread Cake. Now how about some nice winter greenery? Today we have a beautiful Holiday Wreath DIY from Lizzy McGinn, a Mintie who also does incredible floral design. You can see her work at her website, Saturday Flowers, and on Instagram. Check out Lizzy’s instructions below, in her own words:

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The Sweet Smell of the Holidays

With our big holiday challenge coming up soon, we decided to help get everyone in the spirit. We kicked things off yesterday with Jack’s holiday playlist and we’re very happy to continue spreading holiday cheer with a delicious Gingerbread Cake recipe from Cathy Haebe. Cathy is not only a Mintie, but she is also an incredible baker! Check out her work at and on Instagram. Try this recipe out at home to fill you home with the scent of the holidays…

Classic Gingerbread Cake

(Yields 3 layer 9” cake)

  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
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