Greeting Card Design Essentials

resources imageGreeting cards offer supreme flexibility, allowing your designs to maximize your message whether it's fun, serious, thoughtful, poignant, gracious or something else entirely. There are four main components to greeting card design: the front panel, two inside panels and the back panel. Follow these greeting card design essentials to craft powerful greeting cards that have impact:


The front of your greeting card should convey the tone of your message and entice readers to open your greeting card to see what's inside. Your text and imagery should be consistent with your message. If you're offering congratulations or thanks, these words should be on the front of the card. If you're using your greeting card as a sales tool, you should reveal your offer on the front. Your greeting card design should be clear and easy to define. One or two main images against a complementary background are all you need for an effective greeting card design. Full-color greeting cards typically look better than their one- or two-color counterparts, so use color to your full advantage in your greeting card designs.

Inside panels

The inside panels of your greeting cards are only limited by the boundaries of the cards themselves. Most greeting cards leave the left panel blank for personal messages and include some text on the right. You don't have to be so bland. Instead, try creating a design that spans both panels and add a dash of color for premium effect.

Back panel

Again, most greeting cards have a blank back panel, save for company/designer credit and a copyright. Instead of wasting this space, you can use it to offer a reminder of your message, provide contact information or even include a coupon or other value-added incentive.

Folds, foil and envelopes

resources imageBefore you set out to design your greeting card, consider how it will be folded: vertically or horizontally. You'll also need to know whether your greeting card will be foil stamped or die cut, both of which can enhance your greeting card and help your designs stand out from the competition. Work with your printer to determine how you need to indicate foil stamping or folds in your design file and to develop a die-cut template if needed. All greeting cards need envelopes, but why settle for a plain white envelope when you can enhance your sentiment by adding a small design to your greeting card envelopes? Following these greeting card design essentials will help you craft endearing greeting cards that have character and leave your recipients with a positive and lasting impression.