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hey there! I'm monica 

I pride myself on making amazing style and design accessible for everyone, regardless of location, budget, or ability! My design philosophy is rooted in authenticity + attainability - If I can do it, you can too! My work has been featured in countless publications, but I take the most pride in homeowners that have been personally inspired by my DIY ideas and have tried something in their own homes!

learn more about ME + MY BIZ

Okay, so two years ago Vista Print entered my life… yes, it sounds dramatic, but man, it Rocked My World! Maybe you’ve heard of Vista, and maybe you know you can get FREE pens and oodles of business cards, but that really doesn’t excite nor apply to you.  Well, I’m hoping that some of these ideas will get you almost as sold on Vista as I am (and no, I don’t get commission- lol.) 
Ok, so with Vista Print, you sign up for their emails (and yes, you’ll get a lot, so don’t use your everyday email address unless you want to.  I have one email account for all my “junk” emails I subscribe to and one “real” account that I use daily) Every few days, Vista will send you FREE products you can order- you only pay shipping.  There are 3 shipping options, so the price is decent and totally worth all the products you’ll be getting for free!
Now onto the fun part… what you can create in Vista!  The suggestions I’m giving in this post were all made without using Photoshop or any professional design programs.  Vista has designs to choose from or you can create your own and upload a completed design.  I do a lot of both. 
Idea # 1- Mommy Cards
These little cards are perfect for the playdate lovin’ mom.  Keep them in your purse and when your child makes a friend at the local park, you can give new friend’s mommy one of your super-cool cards so that you can meet up again.  If you’re like me, you’ve jotted down a mom’s cell number on a scrap of paper, only to completely lose it and then feel awful that you never called. 
250 Mommy Cards Printed as business cards = FREE!
Idea # 2- Shower Invitations
You don’t need to pay insane prices for cool, trendy invitations.  Get ideas online and then design your own! Baby Lucas (after Luke Skywalker) was due to arrive last summer and of course we needed fabulous Star Wars invitations for our Star Wars themed Shower.  The pictures were simply pulled from Google Images and the font was free online. 
50 Invites Printed as Oversized Postcards = FREE!
(sorry for the blurry parts, but I wanted to get rid of the personal info)
Have I mentioned I have the best, most super-fun friends ever?
Idea # 3- Children’s Birthday Parties
I haven’t bought an invitation in two years.  Small postcards, large postcards, notecards, or invitations can all be used to create your invites in Vista.  This is Kenzie’s Spa Party invite.  She had so much fun helping me design it! This one was one-sided, but the back can be personalized as well.  We put them in 5x 7 envelopes and voila! I only needed 10 invites, but 100 were Free, so we have lots to use as scrap cardstock.
100 Party Invitations = FREE!
Idea # 4- Christmas Cards
Can you believe how much Christmas cards have changed in the last few years?  Gone are the days of the  painted, snowy scene cards and in are awesome photo cards and more! The only problem is that it can cost a small fortune to send the nice photo cards to everyone.  These were our Christmas Cards from 2009. I used Picnik (free editing software) to edit our pics, create a collage, and add some bling; and then I uploaded it onto the oversized 5 x 7 postcards.   
I think my favorite part was that I could fully customize the back and had plenty of space to say exactly what we wanted to share.  Another bonus was that I could mail them as postcards and didn’t need envelopes.  Score!
100 Christmas Cards (2 orders of 50) = FREE!
Idea # 5- Kids Pretend Supplies
Last Christmas I used Vista to put together a Vet Kit for Kenzie.  She loves animals and loved playing vet, but she was getting a little “old” for typical pretend play.  So, we made pretend “cool” again by giving her a present of real vet supplies.  Her vet supplies included: a Pet Vet Poster, a personal stamp, business cards, a personalized pen, a tote bag, stationary and  printed forms (I went online and grabbed a basic vet form.) She LOVED it and had so much fun playing vet again, since now it seemed a bit more grown up.  You could do this for anything your child is into… Doctor, Builder, Photographer, Ballerina, etc. 
Oodles of Pretend Play Supplies = FREE!
Pet Vet Poster
Personal Stamp
Idea # 6- Totes for Everything
I mean everything! Every time I put in an order I add a tote (umm they’re free, why not!) Here are some ideas: Library Book Tote, Sports Tote (the one below was for Kenzie’s cleats, shinguards, and water bottle for soccer.) Books for the Car, Snacks for on-the-go, Sleepover Bag (sized just right for one night and you could write something cute on it), Pretend Shopping Bag.  What ideas do you have?  Share them and I’m sure I’ll order one!
Everything Tote Bag = FREE!
Idea # 7- Gift Tags
These are just business cards repurposed into gift tags.  I used these for Christmas presents and they matched so well.  I used a hole punch in the corner and attached them with coordinating ribbon.  You could also make some non-holiday tags to have on hand.  You could even make a set from each child for all the class birthday parties.  My kids love when I have things personalized.  To: _____ From:  Kaden.  I haven’t done that yet, but I will be soon!
250 Gift Tags printed as Business Cards = FREE!
Idea # 8- Teacher Gifts
Want a great, personal gift for a teacher?  How about giving them a collection of coordinating, personalized supplies?  Hit up Target’s dollar bin for a cute container and your gift will be the talk of the teacher’s lounge! Here are some items that you could include: notepads, sticky notes, pens, postcards, notecards, and more! I plan to do this for my kids’ teachers this spring, so I won’t give all my ideas away, but stay tuned for some inspiration!
Personal, Thoughtful Teacher Gifts = FREE
Notepad with magnet on the back
Matching sticky notes
Phew… that was a long post, but hopefully at least one of these ideas made you ready to jump in and give VistaPrint a try.  I promise you’ll be hooked!
Use this link to sign up for Vista today and be sure to share your creations with us!

The comments +

  1. Becca says:

    Something I”ve been wanting to do on Vista is order the free return address labels but just put This Book Belongs to The Derstines. I also want to make up my own t-shirt just for fun:) I think i already designed one.

  2. Becca says:

    PS LOVE the tote idea…along with many others. Got my wheels spinning-thanks!

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