In an era where traditions fade away fast, birthday cards are still the most popular type of greeting card globally. Nearly half of everyday greeting cards are created with a birthday in mind.
But, not enough of us take advantage of all the creative ways there are to add a personal touch and unique flair to the next birthday card we send.
Why wait to celebrate? There’s never been a better time than the—you guessed it—present to flip the script and imagine what kind you send next.
In this blog post, we’ll show you a wide variety of birthday card art and DIY examples that’ll delight your next birthday card recipient.
So come on in, and welcome to the party.
Birthday Card Art Done 6 Ways
Want to win over someone with a card as they take another trip around the sun? Go for a birthday card style that captures their spirit.
If a specific card style appears to not be a fit, ponder other ways it can be reimagined so that it caters to them.
Here are six unique birthday card styles.
1. Drawing Birthday Card
Drawing on birthday cards isn’t a brand new trend, but it’s aged gracefully. It makes for a wildly popular birthday card design choice. It’s not a coincidence it boosts the moods of those who draw them or gaze into them.
Once we grow up, we often forget how much joy doodling once brought us. Children celebrating birthdays may not need a reason to laugh or giggle at a drawing on cards they receive. However, we need drawing to remind us it’s okay to feel like a kid again.
Just take a peek at this hand-drawn birthday card. The back-to-basics design opts for a white background and thin black ink—as well as a lovely combination of fruits and florals that look like they fell off a cornucopia.
2. Zentangle Birthday Card
Tired of templates? Look no further than Zentangle. This drawing style trades traditional templates for a patterned system. Zentangle is just structured enough for beginners to not feel like they’re falling behind. Yet, it allows you to create unique patterns from dots, circles, curves, lines, and s-shaped lines.
This Zentangle birthday card touts a semi-symmetric look across a mandala banner—a geometric design representing the universe in Hinduism and Buddhism. Zentangle leaves a soothing effect on the eye and even aids meditation practices.
Once you draw yours by hand, Zentangle will prompt you to hyper-focus on small details, unlocking both your focus and creativity.
3. Pop-up Art Birthday Card
Pop-up art got its start in books, not for entertainment, but to launch the 13th century equivalent of Google.
Nowadays, you don’t have to search long before discovering why pop-up art is a fantastic way to transform a flat birthday card. Pop-up art cards exude a 3D-esque nature that breaks dimensions and our expectations of what a top-notch experience as a birthday card recipient should be.
So, is it a surprise pop-up art can set off a purple birthday explosion like this? Of course not. On a Rectangles-Crosshatch background, this birthday card uses balloon dye, confetti, and a reliable pair of scissors to ensure this KABOOM didn’t just come out of nowhere.
4. Color Birthday Card
How you go about choosing the right color for your birthday card depends on who it’s for. Birthday cards for kids may feature a fair share of neons and pastels.
Adult birthday cards aren’t limited to one or two dominant colors. Still, plenty of birthday cards (like this one) come in pink.
Vector graphics unleash a Millennial-esque pink that establishes a smooth background in this birthday card. By opting for a digital postcard format, this card proves you don’t have to follow too many traditions while celebrating someone’s special day.
5. Painted Birthday Card
Were we getting to the end of this blog post without dripping a few paint-related pro tips for your birthday card design? Of course not!
Whether or not you take or pass up a chance to channel your inner Picasso, you can still include it on your card.
You’re not expected to pick a multi-color aesthetic if you opt for a paint design. But this happy birthday card builds enough consistency with different shades of blue before letting secondary colors make short and sweet appearances.
6. Calligraphy Birthday Card
Calligraphy has transformed global art and innovation since the days of Ancient Rome. Back then, it was so useful it brought the Latin alphabet to life in Roman cursive.
If it’s good enough to create a world-famous alphabet and font, then you can count on it to be the focal point of your birthday card design.
We can’t confirm how Julius Caesar would feel about receiving this happy birthday message. But, we do know its hand-lettered calligraphy flows like butter on a hot knife.
The cursive font doesn’t mimic John Hancock’s signature, and it tiptoes close to a collegiate varsity-style font. Yet, after dimming down the tints, the card’s sunny disposition is delicately understated.
The Most Important Design Tip
When push comes to shove, finding a birthday card style that gets the job done boils down to one element that’s not exclusive to brilliant design. The secret recipe for a birthday card they’ll keep forever is as old as time—it starts and ends with empathy.
You’ll score big when you tailor your birthday card to the recipient’s outlook of the world. Dive deep and think about what and who they care about.
From there, imagine what their utopia would look like if it came to life. And then jot down what design tools can best achieve that objective.
You got this!
Cover image via Natalia Tsyglakova, MarLein, and musbila.