DIY: Thanksgiving Acorn Centerpiece

By Alison of The Alison Show

Acorns are one of fall’s perfect little understated details. I thought, why not make them larger than life and add some glitz? Can’t hurt, right? You can do this craft an easy way, or an even easier way. Or both!

acorn

With some tacky glue and glitter you have glam acorns, and for an even easier version of this craft you can simply paint your acorn with chalkboard spray paint. These acorns dress up your table nicely, and the chalkboard versions would also work well as place
cards or gift tags.

I liked the juxtaposition of the more synthetic glitter and chalkboard paint with the natural-looking yarn, but obviously you could do these in a wide variety of colors and combinations.

Keep reading for the full tutorial…

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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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Dallas Mintie Meet Up

We love it when Minties get together and especially when they send us photos! Last week, Lauren Chism of Palm Papers organized a meet up for local Dallas-area minties. Here are some lovely photos and a few words from Lauren:


(Clockwise from the front): Jill Efrussy of Stamped Paper Co., Annie Roche of 5by7 Designs, Susan Asbill, Ann Gardner, Lauren Chism of Palm Papers, Rebecca Bowen, Vivien Jordan of The Eclectic Press, Lesa Abney of Paper Nest by Lesa, and Abigail Luby of Chips and Salsa Designs.

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Holiday Guest Judges.

Every year we are especially excited about our holiday challenge and in particular about our esteemed guest judges’ awards. Each judge is not only a key influencer in their universe, but their exceptionally fine tuned taste helps guide our design community, as well as our customer. This year, as if the giant honor each one of these design giants conveys weren’t enough, each judge will also award a $500 prize.

Bri Emery is the creator of and voice behind the blog designlovefest. Her enthusiasm for simple yet effective design grew into a lifelong love for quality and creativity. Bri very quickly earned a reputation in the blog community as the go-to gal for innovative and stylish execution.

Annual Report by j.bartyn was tops for Bri. “I am a huge fan of information design and I thought this was charming and well designed. I would love to get this card in the mail.”

Annual Report

Bri’s four other faves included (clockwise from top left): Candy Cane Countdown by annie clark. “Impactful, bold and nice type layout.” | Silverwhite by Kelli Hall. “Subtle & delightful type.” | Ombre Tidings by Paper Dahlia. “As a big ombre fan, this one caught my attention!” | Light Feathers by hobson studios. “Lovely, simple & delicate.”

 

Courtney Eliseo is a designer, blogger, and stationer based in Astoria, NY. Seamless Creative is the design studio where she collaborates with her husband on branding projects for small businesses; Design Work Life, a daily design inspiration blog, and Seamless Paperie, which creates brands and paper goods for weddings and special events.

Courtney chose Moglea‘s Line & Dot for her award.  “I’m a big fan of non-traditional holiday cards that express a festive and celebratory vibe without using the typical colors and imagery. This design does just that. The combination of hand-drawn pattern, bouncy type and interesting color scheme makes for a fun, fresh and unique design.”

Line and Dot

Courtney’s other special mentions include:  Hollygram by Maddy Nye. “I love the hand-lettering and offbeat color palette. It’s a perfect pairing for a fun pet photo.” | Our First Noel by Carrie ONeal. “I love the super simple and clean graphics and type. It perfectly complements a peaceful newborn photo.” | Patterned Snapshot by Alethea and Ruth. “I love that the image and type on top is kept simple in black and white in contrast to the gorgeous floral pattern in the background.” | Peaceful Flurry by Jody Wody. “I love the colorful and textural typography on this one.”

 

Joy Wilson is the voice behind the popular blog, JoytheBaker.com. She is a baker, food photographer, writer, and curator of all things sweet.

Peppermint Crew by Sydney Newsom took the cake for Joy. “I love this design because it’s simple and sweet. I love holiday cards that say something other than Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays, but express a distinctly Winter/Holiday sentiment. This design would be sweet for a couple, children… and I might even try to sneak in a cute picture of my cat in a Santa beard. No big deal.”

Peppermint Crew

Other sweet spots for Joy included: Noel Medallion by Wendy Van Ryn. “I appreciate the clean, handmade feel of this design.  It’s simple, isn’t bombarded with traditional holiday colors, but feels classic and festive.” | Hollygram by Maddy Nye. | White Christmas by cadence paige design. | Santa’s Behavior Check by chocomocacino.

 

Camille Styles is the founder and editor of lifestyle blog camillestyles.com, where she shares the creative entertaining ideas that inspire her parties and her life.

Although it wasn’t easy for her to choose just one, in the end Camille’s favorite was Peace Love and Joy Branches by Alethea and Ruth.“The whimsical font, hand-drawn branches and simple message are absolutely perfect.”

Peace Love and Joy Branches

Camille’s runners-up include: Metropolis by Inkwell Design Studio. “Clean and modern, with a message that is subtle and unobtrusive so that the photo can really shine.” | Chalkboard Quotes by Jill Means. “A creative and fun way to share a personal tidbit about each family member without creating clutter.” | Our First Noel by Carrie O’Neal. “The message is just soooo sweet.” | Ombre Tidings by Paper Dahlia. “I love ombré anything, and this card would appeal to the fashion-y hipster set who are looking for something untraditional.” | Light Feathers by hobson studios. “I love a feather motif, and this adds a fun, “design-y” element without calling attention away from the photo.”

 

A HUGE congratulations to j.bartyn, Moglea, Sydney Newsom, and Alethea and Ruth. Ladies, your genius has been recognized by four of the most visually attuned people we know!

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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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‘Chalkboard’ and ‘Darjeeling’ in Brides

We’re excited to say that our very own “Chalkboard” by Alethea and Ruth and “Darjeeling” by annie clark are featured in the October issue of Brides!

Rachel’s “Chalkboard” is sophisticated in black and white, while her chalk laurels and florals add a casual, friendly feeling to this wedding invite.

Don’t you just love how bright and bold “Darjeeling” is? We love Annie’s painterly strokes and playful flourishes.

Congratulations, Rachel and Annie!

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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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