As Christmas approaches if you are on Pinterest you may have been inspired by all the wonderful craft projects including how to create your own Holiday gift tags.
But what if you don’t have access to tools like Photoshop or do not have the skills to be able to use it?
One of my favourite tools I use almost every day when creating visual content for presentations, images for Pinterest, my blog articles or social networks is PicMonkey. While it is free to use, I have invested in the paid version as they have lots of additional images you can use and they have recently updated their site with new content to help you customise your Fall and Holiday visual content.
Lia recently created some wonderful Christmas food gift labels which are available to download free from WordLabel and the designs were so lovely it inspired my experimentation with PicMonkey to create my own gift labels.
Here are the steps I followed and I hope this tutorial will help you create your own Holiday printables and gift tags.
Firstly register for the paid Picmonkey account – it is only US$ 4.99 per month (and US$ 33 per annum) at the time of writing this article, so really affordable even if you have a very small budget.
When you log into PicMonkey click on the top where it invites you to create a collage.
On the left you will see the option to add your own photos – this is where you add a chalkboard background – there are a lot of free ones available online that you can download for personal use or you could create your own by taking a photograph of a chalkboard.
Delete the additional cells so that you are left with one image and then on the left side click the area for the background where you change the corner rounding so that you can then create a circular template.
Then click button to make the background transparent.
Add your chalkboard background to the collage and you will then see it shows up as a circular image.
Click the link at the top of the PicMonkey screen that says ‘Edit’ so that you can then add overlays to your chalboard collage.
PicMonkey have recently added lots of new images and effects – in this example I used the Chill effect in the Winterland collection which made the chalkboard blue.
I decided to stay with the black chalkboard background for the first project but this is a nice feature you might want to use.
Another effect you may want to explore is the ability to make the chalkboard look frosty – yes PicMonkey have a new Frost effect you can add to your Holiday gift label.
Do not forget to explore some of the older features of PicMonkey for example you could add one of the Victorian labels and change the colour of the overlay – in this example I kept one white and the other I made transparent so you can see the chalkboard effect for most of the Holiday gift label.
In the new Winterland series of effects there are some new Victoriana labels that you could experiment with – remember you can change the colour of the labels and the level of transparency.
A collection of overlays PicMonkey added earlier this year were the postal overlays and in there you will find a star image that you could add to your chalkboard Holiday gift label.
And a new series of frames have been added to the Winterscapes series that you could explore – these are probably best for adding to images that are square or rectangular as they are in a JPEG format so your circular label will not remain that shape.
There are so many overlays and effects in the Winterland and Santaland collection you will be spoilt for choice and of course you can always add your own images to your Holiday chalkboard gift tag or printable.
With many of them you can also change the colour of the image.
I suggest that you save your Holiday gift label at different stages as unlike in tools like Photoshop you will not be able to edit them later – I have found sometime that I have made a spelling mistake on an image so you don;t want to have to recreate the image from scratch.
You could add a banner to your chalkboard Holiday gift label and customise the colour to work with the other colours in your gift label.
You might decide to add a font to your gift label – there are new fonts too in the SantaLand and Winterland collections from PicMonkey.
Remember you can alter the angle of all your overlays, banners and font and I changed the font colour to match with my overlays that I had added to my chalkboard gift label.
Once you have completed your project you can then save the image and I also bring the images back into PicMonkey to resize them – you can then add them to a Word Document or PowerPoint Slide if you want to lay them out – save the document to PDF then you can print them onto paper, card or onto round labels.
You can follow this approach to create other Holiday marketing materials, or printables.
If you do not want to create a round image, a new a design feature from PicMonkey this week enables you to create a blank canvas instead of having to use a collage or photograph or image. This feature is really helpful if you are looking to create an infographic, a watermark, blog header or graphic such as for your Goolge Hangout lower third.
To access this feature just hover over the “Design” button at the top the home page to access the bank canvas options. You can use the Canvas Colour tool or use the color picker to choose a background color, or select “Transparent canvas” if you are creating a logo or an image with non-rectangular edges that you want to layer over another image when you have finished editing it.
And earlier this month PicMonkey released another great feature – you can now bring in images and photographs to add to your materpiece from your Flickr and Facebook accounts, in addition to Dropbox and your computer’s hard drive.
And a final thought for those of you who are authoring blogs, you will see the image at the top of this page which I have created specifically for my blog by creating an image in PicMonkey and then adding my chalkboard Holiday gift tag to it with my social media handle – the portrait image works well for Pinterest. In my workflow when creating content for my social networks I also take the time to create a slightly different square image that I then re-size in PicMonkey to upload to Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter which you can see below.
I hope you found this tutorial of assistance – do leave a comment to let me know if you create any Holiday gift labels or marketing collateral using PicMonkey as a result of reading the article – I just might feature some of my favourites on my social networking profiles.