Skip to content

Custom Corner: Happy Holidays from ONE to ALL

December 24, 2015
Once again Mindy Rosso-Gaemi, GCU Co-Founder and Community Manager, has set forth to create a highly personalize, one of a kind holiday card.  With a long time passion for greeting cards it is a highlight of her holidays to send a fun and meaningful card.


Mindy has shared the following about the making of her 2015 holiday card:

I look at cards all day. You would think that I’d have my card complete nice and early. That never seems to happen.  Not only am I busy at work but sometimes my best inspiration comes when the holidays are right upon me.
This year I had three sources of inspiration that all came together quite, ahem, seamlessly:


First, with my teen daughters we are always talking about “squad” and “squad goals” referring to a group of friends, team or family.  It’s a trendy meme & hashtag.  So I knew I wanted the theme to reflect our family as a squad.


Secondly, we support one another and stick together but we also rely on so many others – like an extended squad.  I often find myself saying “it takes a village” when I need help or I am able to help someone.  With this came the thread of all the individuals it takes to make a family thrive … friends, grandparents, neighbors, teachers, etc … the “village”.  I also loved the idea of Santa and all of his helpers who make Christmas happen.  A fun visual of Santa and company with a SquadGoals caption.


The third inspiration was my recent weekend in Solvang, California located in the Santa Ynez Valley.  I visited this quaint and adorable Danish town as a birthday get-away with my mom.  The little town was so festive, lit from top to bottom with holiday cheer.  It felt like being in Santa’s Village.  Surrounded by old-world craftsmanship like gingerbread woodwork, thatched roofs, snowflake cutouts, traditional windmills and delicate, powder sugar sprinkled pastries (yum!) made me think of the Winter patterns on traditional Nordic sweaters.  The sweaters being knitted of many single threads to make something of beauty became my analogy for all the people in our lives that support us every day.

julefest-solvang sml

SolvangWindmill sml
I had recently purchased some lovely wool Christmas stockings for the office staff from shopkeeper SohoDesign on Etsy.  They were handmade, pieced together from vintage sweaters with festive Nordic designs.

See how cute they look in the office!

Office Stockings (1) smlOffice Stockings (2) sml
So melding these 3 concepts together – Squad Goals, it takes a Village and Nordic Sweater I knew what I wanted.  Now I just needed to find the right artist who was able and willing to make my ideas reality, and quickly.


I had already seen GCU artist Jenn Inashvili’s California Christmas Nordic sweater card.  It is adorable and creative!  A California Christmas is always fitting for me and apparently I have a recent obsession with Nordic sweaters.  I asked Jenn if she was up to the challenge and thankfully she was!
She quickly got to work customizing the front.  Here is the original front design:
FireShot Screen Capture #429 - 'A California Christmas Sweater_ Love, Joy, Peace, Sunshine card' - www_greetingcarduniverse_com_holiday-cards_christmas-cards_by-region-state-country_us-united-states_california_a-california-christmas-love
And then on to the larger project, the inside image.  I always have a very long verse and a long wish list of what I want inside.  This required incorporating photos, experimenting with fonts, borders and textures, tedious positioning, and some fun doodling on Jenn’s part.
Jenn was so easy to work with – quick, clever, creative and so much more.  And bless her heart for knocking this out for me in literally 3 days.  Jenn performed nothing short of a Christmas miracle!




2015SquadInside (1)

Here’s what Jenn had to say about the designing process:

“I designed the original California Christmas card last year kind of late in the season.  I was trying out different Christmas sweater patterns and this design was the one that came to life for me. I have lived in California for five years, after moving here from the Buffalo, NY area and have been enjoying the winters without snow and ice and below freezing tempuratures.


It was fun adding the Gaemi family to this design. It was Mindy’s idea to add the family, and also add a cyclist to the traffic.  Mindy supplied the inside text, photos, and the ideas she had for the inside layout. I like how her idea of bringing in more stitching to the inside design made it all come together, along with the inside text that goes along with the theme. I also drew the cartoons which were Mindy’s suggestion based on the squad theme. They were fun to draw. I love adding small details to my cartoons. Mindy was a pleasure to work with. Great communication, and I’m so pleased that we were able to work together on a tight schedule for a great result!”

4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 24, 2015 2:08 pm

    What a fun card and wonderful sentiment! Great job, Jenn!
    Mindy, you always are so creative with your Christmas greetings!
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!

  2. Rycky Creations permalink
    December 25, 2015 5:52 pm

    Wow, so impressed with both Mindy’s vision and Jenn’s execution! The card turned out
    great and is a one-of-a-kind, creative Christmas greeting. Way to go, girls! Two thumbs up 🙂

    Merry Christmas to all …

  3. December 29, 2015 6:57 pm

    AWESOME design and WONDERFUL verse! Thank you for sharing such a personal sentiment. 👏👏👏

  4. January 5, 2016 9:00 pm

    Thank you all! The synergy was wonderful. Until next year’s card … 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: