23 Years of Homemade Holidays

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Since the early 1990s, I’ve made it a yearly tradition to illustrate, design and print my own holiday cards. That makes me a freak, I know, but there’s a lot of joy in thinking up new ideas and having no creative restraints. The cards end up looking individualistic, sometimes clunky, or surprisingly beautiful. I love them all.

This year was a struggle, since I wasn’t feeling particularly inspired after our horrible election season. Despite the added stress, the card design came out excellent. I thought about doing a drawing based on the famous “Twelve Days of Christmas” carol. Some inspiration came from a lovely book showcasing midcentury modern designer Alexander Girard (an anniversary gift from Christopher). Browsing the Glass Menagerie pottery on Jonathan Adler’s site crystallized the design. A rubber eraser, carved with a pear shape, completed the card.

Some of our other cards over the past 23 years are pictured below (click on each for a larger view). Happy Holidays.

he earliest, funky cards from 1993-96. The deer silhouette is a favorite.

The earliest, funky cards from 1993-96. The deer silhouette is a favorite.

The Santa Claus illustration from 1996 was modified into a LitKids print (and card) in 2012.

The Santa Claus illustration from 1996 was modified into a LitKids print (and card) in 2012.

Cards from 1997 and 2003 (the year our children's book, Mama Cat, came out).

Cards from 1997 and 2003 (the year our children’s book, Mama Cat, came out).

In the 2000s, we had cards professionally printed with mixed results. Clockwise: 2007, 2008, 2015.

In the 2000s, we had cards professionally printed with mixed results. Clockwise: 2007, 2008, 2015.

Christopher's cut-paper designs graced cards in 2013 and 2014.

Christopher’s cut-paper designs graced cards in 2013 and 2014.

2 Thoughts on “23 Years of Homemade Holidays

  1. Burt Cooper on December 15, 2016 at 4:38 am said:

    Matt,

    Great design work, as usual…Happy Holidays.
    Yours is one of the few old school independent websites remaining
    and I’m glad you still do your thing despite Facegram and Instabook

    On a slightly more serious note, I’m a bit peeved at folks who are using “THE ELECTION” as an excuse to wallow in self-doubt and depression. If one is truly upset over “THE ELECTION” then one should pick oneself up by the proverbial bootstraps, shake off the old ennui and get to work to change UPSETTING into GO-GETTING…

    You’ve got so much optimistic art talent, that it would be a shame to let “THE ELECTION” slow you down in artistic respects

    Happy New Year

    BC

  2. Thanks, Burt! Somebody still checks in on Scrubbles.net – fantastic!

    I didn’t want to appear to whiny, actually it’s very emboldening to see many, many others feeling the same way – we have to stay strong and vigilant. It was tough doing the card because they’ve always been “cute,” and I don’t feel particularly cute anymore. But who knows, maybe something better will come out of that disillusionment. Happy Holidays!

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