InDesign Greeting Card

The greeting card industry takes in around 20 BILLION dollars a year (US!) so it’s a pretty big, important area, and you have the skills to get started as a greeting card designer!

Of course, it is the festive season, so you may wish to make a card for someone for Christmas/Hannukah/New Year/etc., but greeting cards are often also given for occasions like:

  • Birthday
  • Congratulations (marriage, baby, new job)
  • Farewell (going to a different job)
  • Retirement
  • Condolences (death in the family)

If you’re making a card for yourself, feel free to put whatever text you want in there.

If you’re making a more general card that others might want to use (even buy!), you would  leave a lot of blank space on the inside (although it doesn’t have to be white! Just make sure it’s light enough to write on and read.)

They can be funny (in appropriate ways and appropriate circumstances) or sincere.

Some tips/suggestions:

Bright, colourful, and creative are really important in a card. You don’t want it boring and dull, and you don’t want your card to look like other cards out there. Have fun with it!

HIGH QUALITY, especially ORIGINAL artwork is a MUST! If you’re googling random card elements and backgrounds, you won’t get the marks or have the success that you would if you designed something yourself! Think about using Photoshop or Illustrator to design elements! If you absolutely need to insert images from somewhere else, consider a place like UNSPLASH where you can get really high-quality photographs that you have permission to use!

InDesign is DEFINITELY the right application to use to put it all together, but you could design elements or pages in Photoshop or Illustrator and then place them into the InDesign document.

Ideal InDesign document setup:

If you want to ensure that there’s no white border around your printed page, you can add a BLEED

Having your background images & colours extend off of the page will ensure that you don’t have a white border. It’s not essential, but it does look a lot better in the end.

Page layout:

On your Pages panel you’ll notice that the pages start out laid out like this:

We want those pages to all be side by side, instead of those lonely pages 1 and 4. At the top right of the Pages panel, there are three little lines. Click ’em!

Turn on “Allow Selected Spread to Shuffle”

And drag your pages so that they are all side by side

Remember that when your card is folded, the pages go like this:

Remember that in this program, everything goes in a frame. You’ll PLACE your files into frames (File/Place or Ctrl + D).

When you are done, you’ll PACKAGE your file to drop it off!


Tell Mr. Robson what's on your mind!