November 2020 archive

Matching Family Outfits

One of my greatest joys in life is to put my kids in matching clothes. It doesn’t happen too often because they each have opinions about what they want to wear, but at Christmastime, they will humor me with wearing matching family outfits and pajamas!

With each passing year, I have noticed that retailers are embracing this trend and putting out lots of different options for configurations of families, budgets, as well as giving options of completely matching vs. coordinating outfits.

Here’s a few of my favorites!

Hanna Andersson

If you’re new to the Hanna Andersson brand, prepare for a bit of sticker shock. The clothes are not cheap, but they are built to LAST!!! We have Hanna clothes that have been passed down and still look great. Our PJs have been through the wash countless times and are still looking wonderful. They clearly are used, but they hold up much better than other brands. They also frequently have sales from 25-40% off. However, coupons do not stack.

My favorite pattern for Christmas is Hanna Andersson Dear Deer. So much so, that this year I decided to take the plunge and order matching PJs for my husband and I as well!

Hanna Andersson Family Matching Pajamas – Dear Deer

This line is great because it includes lots of options, from the classic Hanna long johns, to short johns (if you live in a warmer climate, or just prefer shorts!), flannel options, nightgowns, onesies and even something for your pet!

There’s lots of other print options available from Hanna including more feminine ones for Mommy/Daughter matching, character themed matching like Star Wars or Disney, or even just classic stripes!

Kohls – Cuddl Duds

Kohls has a huge selection this year of matching jammies. I really like this set from Cuddl Duds. I love the cute bear graphics and the classic red and black Buffalo plaid print. I love the little name tags like Mama/Papa Bear, Baby Bear and Little Bear.

Matching Family Pajamas from Kohls

Kohls also has some really cute matching Disney themed pajamas. I love, love, love these two sets where you can “dress up” as different characters from Toy Story and Frozen!

Toy Story Matching Family Pajamas

Frozen Matching Family Pajamas

Amazon – Burt’s Bees

Burt’s Bees has been really stepping it up with their pajama game this year. I remember searching a few years ago and there was hardly anything, but this year they have a few styles for sale on Amazon. I really like this fair isle print, and it reminds me a bit of the Hanna print. If you find the Hanna styles a little too spendy, these Burt’s Bees ones are much more moderately priced.

Burt’s Bees Organic Family Pajamas

 

Besides the ones featured, I know that Macy’s, Target and Walmart also all have family pajamas. One of the trickiest things is finding something for everyone in your family — from the littlest ones who might still be in onesies, to a parent/Grandparent who wants to also join in the fun!

Does your family have any favorites?

Custom Photo Holiday Card Review – Shutterfly vs. Tiny Prints

Hi and Happy Holidays!

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We missed our usual Thanksgiving dinner with friends due to the pandemic. Because we won’t see our friends in person this holiday season, I think sending cards is extra important this year! I was way more on top of things this year so I was able to order my cards well in advance and will hopefully get them all out by the first week of December!  I am usually a huge procrastinator and have been known to send them out December 22 or 23.  Oops!

I ordered from 2 companies this year so that I could sample a few different products.  I ordered from Shutterfly and Tiny Prints.  They are both owned by the same company but the target market and price point is a little higher at Tiny Prints.

Software

Both Shutterfly and Tiny Prints have similar software.  You upload your photos and you can drag and drop into a ton of different designs.  You can filter down the hundreds of designs by style of card (flat or folded), size of card, number of photos and the type of greeting you want to send (Christmas vs. Holiday vs. New Year).  The hardest part for me was to choose which photo I wanted to send as our main image.  Once I had that decided the rest was easy — I just had to choose which design fit our image the best.

Ordering Quantity

Shutterfly cards seem to have 2 different ordering styles. There are some which must be ordered in sets of 10, and there are some where you can order the exact quantity you need.  The card style I choose could be ordered in any quantity.

Tiny Prints cards come in sets of 5, with 10 being the minimum order per card style.

Pricing

Both Shutterfly and TinyPrints seem to always have some sort of special deal happening. Shutterfly lets you add any number of promo codes to your account and then it has an engine which will determine your best price.  Typically, you are allowed to combine one percent-off code and one dollar-off code.  For instance, you can combine a 30% off cards coupon with a $10 off cards coupon.

Tiny Prints allowed more than 1 promo code in the checkout page.  I didn’t come across a limit, but I did find that many promo codes conflicted with each other so I couldn’t combine them.

Regular price for 10 holiday cards starts at $22.90 for Shutterfly and $26.90 for Tiny Prints (with both vendors providing a cheaper per card price if ordered in larger quantities), however as I’ve stated above, there is always some kind of sale happening.  A more realistic price to shoot for is around 30% off–I’ve seen those sales often, and often even 40% or more is possible. Shipping starts at $7.99 for Shutterfly economy shipping and $5.99 for Tiny Prints economy shipping.

Delivery & Packaging

For an order of 25 cards made on 11/29, I was quoted the following:

Shutterfly’s estimated delivery window was 12/6-12/11 for economy shipping ($7.99), 12/8-12/10 for standard shipping ($11.99), 12/5 for expedited shipping ($19.99) and 12/4 for rush ($31.99).

TinyPrint’s estimated delivery window was 12/9-12/10 for economy shipping ($5.99), 12/8-12/9 for standard shipping ($9.95), 12/5 for expedited shipping ($14.95) and 12/3 for super rush ($24.95).

When I made my initial orders, the cards actually took a really long time to arrive.  I made my Tiny Prints order on 11/13, it was printed 11/20 and it arrived at my home on 11/26 — a full 2 weeks after I made the order!  I am not sure why it took so long to print because it was actually before the Thanksgiving holiday.

For Shutterfly, I ordered on 11/9, they were shipped out 11/10 and arrived on 11/14–a total of 5 days from order date which was great.  In fact, this was much quicker than the delivery of the photobook I had ordered in the same order!

My Shutterfly order came in a paper mailer.  My Tiny Prints order came in a sturdy box.  Both protected the cards but the envelopes from Shutterfly had a slight crease in the corner where they had jammed up against the mailer edge.  No big deal, but I thought I’d mention it.

Tiny Prints Box

Tiny Prints Box

Shutterfly Paper Mailer

Shutterfly Paper Mailer

Product & Paper

Both the companies delivered a beautiful product.  Ultimately, I was happy with both of them, but here are a few details that I noticed.  The family portrait I chose printed well on both cards.  I think I have to give the slight edge to Shutterfly though.  I think it just came out a little clearer there, but it is almost too close to call.

Shutterfly had a few cards which had some color transfer onto the back of the card where it was white.  I ordered a foil printed card and I think the foil is a beautiful accent.  It really makes the card feel a little more special.

Shutterfly Foil Card

Shutterfly Foil Card

Color transfer smudges

See the pink arrows for where you can see color transfer smudges

TinyPrints cards were printed on really nice thick paper.  I ordered 2 sets of letterpress cards and was happy with one set but mildly disappointed with the other.  The 2 designs I ordered were Naturally Happy and Joyous Tradition.  Naturally Happy had the deep indentations (I googled this and it is called “bite”) so the tactile experience of running my fingers over the print was what you’d expect from letterpress.  Joyous Tradition was printed with very shallow bite.  On the other hand, because Naturally Happy had such a deep bite, it showed through on the back.  I ordered my wedding invites in letterpress and didn’t have this problem.  Granted, wedding invites cost a wee bit more than Tiny Prints, but it is something to consider if you’re thinking about ordering Tiny Prints letterpress cards.

TinyPrints Letterpress Card Detail

Tiny Prints Letterpress Card Detail – Joyous Tradition.  The letterpress bite was impossible to capture since it was so shallow.

TinyPrints Letterpress Card Detail

Tiny Prints Letterpress Card Detail – Naturally Happy. You can see the letterpress bite in the flowers near the bottom.

Shutterfly vs. TinyPrints Paper Comparison

Shutterfly vs. Tiny Prints Paper Comparison

Overall

Overall, I was pretty satisfied with both sets of cards and companies.  I wouldn’t use either company without a really great coupon or sale, as it gets to be quite pricey to order 30+ cards.  I thought that for the price I paid, the Shutterfly cards were a better “deal” though the Tiny Prints cards were certainly more luxurious.  They definitely appeal to slightly different price points and I think its great to have options whether you’re making an order for holiday cards or birth announcements.

Are you ordering holiday cards this year? Which company is your favorite?