Written by Dear Ida .. on Tuesday, December 04, 2012
As we plunge headfirst into December, things are getting crazy. Holiday decorating, shopping, planning -- and orders coming in and flying out. We may be in the thick of our holiday card season work ... be we heartily agree that there's still time for a little play. Here's a sneak peek at a card created for one of our favorite family members, featuing a gaggle of cousins participating in an epic snowball fight. Lisa has done an amazing job of capturing each kid's personality ... take a look:
Cool colors, amazing details and charming personality ... the perfect ingredients for a custom holiday card. And an amazing keepsake memory that everyone in your family will love. Thinking about ordering your own? There's still time ... but hurry!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Monday, November 05, 2012
This week officially kicks off our busiest time of the year, which means ... holiday cards! It's shocking transformation when creepy, gory Halloween decorations are ripped off store shelves and magically replaced overnight with shiny ornaments, blinking holiday lights, stockings, poinsettias, and a crush of bows, ribbons and wrapping paper. Here in Dear Ida-land, we've been busy, too. Like clockwork, after the orange-and-black holiday ends, orders start rolling in. And, as we round out our second year ... we're grateful.
If you're new to our cards, here's a quick primer. Lisa -- our stellar illustrator -- has created 18 colorful backgrounds. Then, it's up to you to help create a completely customized card. It's amazing how totally different each card can look, depending on the design. Take a look at a few of our faves from last year:
How about a seafaring adventure to the North Pole?
Or maybe an afternoon in the kitchen, cooking up some holiday treats?
Or ... even a brisk trip downtown for a little music or maybe some holiday shopping?
It's your choice ... and with your helpful photos, ideas and suggestions, we can create the perfect, completely customized holiday card.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Sunday, November 04, 2012
Autumn in our Portland neighborhood is a majestic affair. The streets in our 'hood are lined with century-old trees that are part of Portland's cherished "urban canopy". They're beautiful in the fall ... and make for weekend after weekend of leaf duty, with a little time for fun, of course. We also just rounded out another surprisingly rainless Halloween night with a pack of kids and a spirited group of adults (red wine in hand). After our record run of sunny summer weather, fall feels surprisingly welcome as we settle into the greens and grays of the Pacific Northwest. Fall also heralds the coming of the holiday season. Will you be sending out cards this year? We hope so!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Monday, September 10, 2012
Ahhh ... fleeting summer. Here in Portand, we take our summers seriously -- because we generally get less than two months worth of stellar weather. And then, BAM ... it's gone. This year has been particularly shiny and bright. High temps. Plenty of sun. And an almost record-breaking run of clear skies with no rain! That said, as we sail through September, the days are shorter, the evenings are chillier and our kids have headed back to school. They call it the "summer bummer" ... which inspired Lisa's latest illustration project.
The end of summer also means it's time for Dear Ida to gear up for another busy holiday season. Snowflakes, trees, presents and baking ... don't blink. It's almost time.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Monday, June 04, 2012
For the past few months, we've been working hard to launch our latest line of home cards: picture-pefect designs drawn in a crisp, detailed style. This week, our friends at Portland Monthly magazine gave us a nice shout out -- including a little backstory as to our success over the past year. And we'd like to share the love!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Friday, June 01, 2012
A little sign of the season from PDX ... summer is just around the corner!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Cool colors, modern patterns and our favorite soft, heavyweight paper stock. Our new line of custom-illustrated silhouette cards have been getting some rave reviews -- in particular, from our good friends at Cool Mom Picks. They think the cards would make perfect Father's Day gifts ... and so do we.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Thursday, May 17, 2012
OK ... we confess. We're known for our holiday cards. Now here's something just a little bit different.
Our new line of Dear Ida cards features clean, crisp custom-illustrations of your home. They're perfect for housewarming gifts, party invites, new address cards or just cool, unique notecards. Curious? Take a look at our galleries and learn more.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Saturday, December 31, 2011
Our best holiday gift this year? Not the new Mac or the fancy camera ... or even the American Girl doll. Our best gifts this year were the amazing comments and compliments we've received from our Dear Ida customers. So great. Cheers to you all for a Happy New Year!
I had no idea that there was even a "best Christmas card" competition out there … but I guess there is (at least in every household I mailed a card to) … and I won. I knew I loved the cards when I received them — ends up everybody else did too. I've received at least one message (in various formats) every day since I mailed them, telling me how great they are. They are AWESOME! The illustration, the quality of the paper (which was perfect … I used a fountain pen and the heavier paper is heavenly to write on), the unique shape, even the envelope … loved every single thing.
--Morrow Bay, CA
We absolutely LOVE our cards! They are beautiful, and of great quality. Even more beautiful than expected. The illustration is magical! Seriously, my husband, daughter and I can't stop looking them and were heartbroken to mail out the last one!
I absolutely loved our cards. The illustrations and the quality of the cards were better than my expectations. I think they were unique and a great alternative to the family picture card. Also, the way they arrived topped it for me. The packaging, the note, the whole experience was great.
I loved my cards this year! Thank you so much for a fun and different Christmas card. I thought the quality was fabulous … loved the weight of the paper and the illustrations as well. Also loved the size of the card, different and the fun, simple envelopes.
What can I say?! You guys did a great job in such a narrow window of time. I wasn't sure how I would pull off a unique birth announcement/holiday card in a hurry but thankfully, I found Dear Ida. You surpassed all of my expectations professionally and creatively!
It was a pleasure to work with you. After perusing Lisa's portfolio I was confident that I had found a good artist and I instinctively trusted that she could come up with a fun concept. And she did.
We are getting tons of great feedback from our friends and family. Thank you so much for helping us out this holiday.
We were delighted with our cards, and have had a lot of comments from friends who thought they were hilarious, amongst the more standard Christmas cards! The likeness of our dogs was fantastic!
We love our Dear Ida cards! From the easy ordering process, to the quality of the paper, and of course, the fantastic illustrations of our family, the cards are really great. However, the most fun part has been the overwhelming reaction from our family and friends around the country. Buzz about the cards dominated our Facebook wall and Christmas calls. We look forward to celebrating many holidays with Dear Ida.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Thursday, December 29, 2011
Hopefully, you're digging out of the avalanche of holiday cheer that buried many of us from real life over the past few days. In our homes, it was a fantastic chaos of goodwill, gifts and fun. Hope it was the same for you.
And now ... as if you hadn't done enough holiday gifting, another idea: a framed memory print of your Dear Ida greeting card. Here's the scoop: We'll print out a high-resolution version of the original illustration by Lisa on super-quality uncoated 7.75" x 18.5" cover-weight paper and mail it right to your door.
And, we must disclose, they make great gifts. We presented a few to our family this year. (And found that, with simple trimming and a little MacGyver-ing of photo mattes, they fit perfectly in an IKEA RIBBA 19 3/4" x 9" frame. Or, they're perfectly suitable for a professional frame job.) If you'd like to order a print, give us a shout at email@example.com.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Monday, December 19, 2011
We've made one last trip to our trusty printer. Packaged our last box of cards. Mailed our final order. And now, we can officially say Dear Ida is done for the holiday season! And what a great one it was. We got to work with dozens of amazing families, scored some nice comments and coverage from blogs and the press, and learned lots about the business of creating a picture-perfect holiday card. Take a look ... we think you'll like what you see. And happy holidays from your buddies at Dear Ida!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Three of our favorite random things at Dear Ida are (in no particular order) woodgrain, Oregon beer and our iPhones -- especially Hipstamatic photos taken with our iPhones. Magically, as we were packing up card orders last weekend, they came together in a most wonderful way. Take a look:
And speaking of cool things we love, we were deemed "cool" last week, courtesy of Kristen, the head-honcho at Cool Mom Picks. She called our cards "a work of art" and we love it ... thanks, Kristen!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Wednesday, November 09, 2011
We just sent our largest order of cards to the printer tonight. So needless to say, it's been busy in Dear Ida-land. Which means Lisa has been logging some serious time with pencil, paper, mouse and computer. We're excited for these orders -- the fact that people are trusting us to create something as personal as their holiday cards. We love it. And apparently, so do our kids.
Tonight, after watching Lisa work, our son, who is five, and our daughter, who is seven, decided they wanted to get into the act. So they created their own cards -- including a Santa cat and a hippo pulling our family in a sleigh. Totally cool. Our kids always say that Lisa has the best job in the world, because she gets to draw and color all day. I think she agrees. And so do our friends at the blog Scoutie Girl, who did a nice profile on Lisa a few weeks ago. It's all about craftiness and creativity. Two things Dear Ida has in spades.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Thursday, November 03, 2011
What do you do? Break out the good china? Whip up a batch of cranberry preserves? Well, in our case, we had the pleasure of working with Martha Stewart Living editorial director Jennifer Aaronson to create a Dear Ida card for her family. And the bonus? Jennifer was nice enough to share her card and feature us on Martha's Living in the Family Room blog. Here's how it went down:
Jennifer sent us photos of her family, including her husband and two super-cute kids. Then, Lisa went to work, creating a pencil illustration.
Jennifer chose her background -- a classic holiday shopping scene -- and Lisa added the sketch of her family to the background.
And voila! Lisa completed the card with amazing color and texture, plus cute little details like a loaf of French bread (Jennifer's a top foodie at Martha), a special treat for her daughter and comfy scarves for the crew to ward off a NYC winter.
We also wrapped up a little something special for Martha -- a batch of custom-illustrated cards featuring her two favorite frenchies, Francesca and Sharkey.
We're big Martha fans and we send a special thanks to Jennifer and her crew for their amazing shout-out and support of Dear Ida.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Monday, October 31, 2011
Happy Halloween from your friends at Dear Ida ... we hope your day is scary and sweet ... and that you get more treats than tricks!
Written by Dear Ida .. on Friday, October 28, 2011
Our families are lucky to live in a neighborhood called Irvington -- which is a designated national historic district that contains one of Portland's largest "urban forests." The autumn color has been especially amazing in our neck of the woods and has got us thinking about cold-weather days -- and, of course, holiday cards. Hope your fall is lovely, too.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Thursday, October 27, 2011
As Portlanders, when we're not riding our fixies to the farmers market, pining for Colin and Carson, or growing ironic facial hair, we like to while away the time reading about our fair city in Portland Monthly magazine. Imagine our delight when one of their writers, Kristin Belz, gave us this amazing shout out. She really gets us ... and we're quite pleased. Check it out here.
Written by Dear Ida .. on Sunday, October 23, 2011
On the weekends, this is how we get it done in PDX.
Written by Murray A. on Monday, September 26, 2011
To introduce folks to our new custom-illustrated cards, we're offering a 10% discount on all holiday card orders placed before October 15. To score this sweet deal, just enter "earlybird"in the discount code field when you check out.
That said, we're also happy for the support of our friends and family, whose orders are rolling in ... keeping Lisa busy and our Web site fine-tuned as we gear up for the holiday season -- which seems to come earlier and earlier each year. Witnessed today at our local Fred Meyer: Christmas lights sharing shelf space with Halloween decorations.
Written by Murray A. on Friday, September 23, 2011
One of the coolest things about our Dear Ida illustrations is the amount of detail that our crackerjack artist, Lisa, puts into each one. it's not just the spark of recognition she puts into each kid, grown-up or pet she draws. it's the richness of the backgrounds that truly knocks our socks off. Stuff like subtle (and-not-so-subtle) patterns, amazing colors and inspired little details that make each card a unique work of art. Take a look and see for yourself ...
Written by Murray A. on Thursday, September 22, 2011
Four months ago, I planted our backyard garden. And four months ago, Lisa, Anna, Andy and I hatched our plan for Dear Ida — a new way for friends and families to share pictures of their favorite folks on holiday cards. As I nurtured and tended to our small plot of backyard planting space, four friends schemed and planned for the launch of this site. This week, we're enjoying the "fruits of our labor." The site is live and the tomatoes are ripe. And they're both equally delicious.