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The holiday season is a time of warmth, togetherness, and celebration, where we gather with loved ones to share moments of joy and gratitude. To add an extra layer of personalization and charm to your holiday gatherings, consider the art of DIY place cards. For those new to calligraphy, this is a wonderful opportunity to explore your creativity, practice your newfound skills, and make your guests feel truly special. However, the list below can be done even if you don’t think you’re artistic at all.
Calligraphy, with its elegant and artistic lettering, elevates the art of place cards to a new level. It adds a sense of sophistication to your table setting and demonstrates the thought and care you’ve put into your holiday festivities. Whether you’re hosting a cozy family dinner, a abig holiday party, or an intimate gathering of friends, DIY place cards will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression.
In this guide, we present ten delightful types of DIY place cards specifically designed for new calligraphers. You don’t need to be a master of calligraphy to create these charming additions to your table. We’ll explore options ranging from classic hand-lettered cards to innovative ideas like leafy elegance and wax seals. With a bit of practice and the right materials, you can make your holiday table both elegant and welcoming.
Festive Ornament Tags
Create small ornament-shaped cards and write guests’ names in calligraphy. Punch a hole at the top and add a ribbon, allowing guests to hang them on their tree as a keepsake. Or, you can buy flat acrylic ornaments on Amazon and write guests’ names on them. Those are real ornaments and your guests get to keep them for years to come.
Mini Chalkboard Place Cards:
Paint small chalkboards with chalkboard paint and use white chalk or chalk markers for the names. This rustic look adds charm to your table. If you’re not feeling particularly crafty, you can buy those mini chalkboards online, or probably at your local craft store like Michael’s (if you’re in the US). Use a fine tip white marker like Bistro so you can easily wipe it off with a weather paper towel or cloth. Pens like Posca or Sharpie are semi permanent on chalkboards, so make sure to avoid those on chalk.
Collect or buy artificial or real leaves, and use a metallic pen or ink to write each guest’s name. Place them at each setting or tie them to napkins. You can use lemon leaf if your dinner is during the summer months, or a maple leaf (artificial if you’d like) for the holidays. PS: There are several options, you can still use a green leaf during the holidays if Maple is not your first pick.
Metallic Pens (several colors)
Wine corks place cards
If you’re a wine lover you can use wine corks to attach the place cards, which can also work as a place card holder! You can use a darker paper like Marsala or plum and write the names in gold. This is a timeless, luxurious type of place card and it will sure impress your dinner guests.
Pinecone Place Cards
Write the names on small, flat pieces of paper, and attach them to pinecones with a dab of hot glue. These are perfect for a rustic, winter-themed setting. You can go the extra mile and spray the pine with gold paint (do so in a well ventilated area), or just buy them online to save you some much needed planning time!
Hand-letter each name on a blank card and add a wax seal with a personalized stamp for an elegant touch. You can buy stamps online with endless designs, along with the wax. Save time by buying wax seals that come in the little tube format so you can use it with a glue gun. For something extra special, add dried (or artificial) mini flowers to the wax seal while it’s still melted (or glitter if this is for NYE) and then stamp it. You can do this at the top or left side of the place card, then write the name right next to it. Absolutely stunning.
Mini Canvas with Easel Place Cards
Place each card on a mini easel, which adds an artistic touch to your table setting. Use your calligraphy skills to write the names. You can buy mini canvas at your local craft store or even online so you can buy in bulk. If you have some acrylic paint around, then you can do some abstract mini painting on the side, or even some mini wintery florals if you’re feeling craft. Write the names with fine tip markers instead of a calligraphy pen. Easy painting tips: add some round red spots with some easy greenery and you got a holiday design in 2 minutes.
Ribbon or String-Tied Scrolls
Roll small scrolls of paper and tie them with a ribbon, with the guest’s name written in calligraphy on the exposed portion of the scroll. You can make that scroll a message once the guest opens it up, the dinner menu or a dessert menu. You can use a gold string to close it up or even silk ribbon. Make it a very medieval feel if you use the right supplies. You can tell your guests a raven dropped them at your house before dinner.
Gold-Edged Place Cards
Paint the edges of your cards or paper with metallic gold or silver paint and write the names in a contrasting color. This creates a luxurious and festive look. If you got that deckled paper even better as it adds even more of a rustic feel. Otherwise you can cut the pace cards by tearing the paper using a ruler. (if you grew up in the 80’s and 90’s you have done this a lot in school LOL)
Use your wine or bubble glass as your place cards!
If you are in a bind for something creative and don’t have time to deal with ordering a bunch of stuff, you can use some chalk markers and write your guests’ name on the base of the glass. This has 2 awesome benefits: you assign their seat, and they have their own glass to use all night without wondering where it went throughout the duration of the party. The easiest but very creative way to keep track of your glass, and mark your spot at the dinner table.
As your holiday festivities draw to a close, take a moment to reflect on the magic of the season. It’s the time when cherished memories are created and bonds are strengthened, and your meticulously crafted DIY place cards have played a role in making your celebrations truly memorable.
The art of calligraphy, even in the hands of a novice, has the power to transform your holiday table setting. Your guests, family, and friends have been welcomed with personalized, artistic name cards that reflect the warmth and care you’ve put into your gatherings. Each place card is a small masterpiece, and they have surely sparked conversations and admiration among your guests.
But beyond the aesthetic appeal, these place cards are a symbol of thoughtfulness and creativity. They carry your personal touch and make your guests feel appreciated, as if each one is a cherished part of your holiday tradition. The time and effort you’ve invested in practicing calligraphy and crafting these place cards have not gone unnoticed, and they’ve added a unique, heartwarming dimension to your holiday celebrations.
As you bid farewell to this holiday season, may your memories be filled with laughter, love, and the joy of being surrounded by those you hold dear. The DIY place cards you’ve created are a testament to the power of personalization and the beauty of sharing a piece of your heart with your loved ones. Until the next holiday season, keep honing your calligraphy skills and savor the art of making every gathering a touch more special.
So what is your favorite place card idea? Are you going to try any of them this holiday season? Let me know in the comments!