Great Photo Gifts That can be Picked up in Time for Christmas

Calling all shutterbugs! Is your phone, camera or hard drive overflowing with great photos you’ve taken? If so, you have a very special card up your sleeve when it comes to holiday gifting! We all know the most memorable gifts are ones that we create ourselves. By creating gifts with your photos, you’re able to share something truly unique and 100% personal that you yourself captured. If photography is your passion, we think these gifts are the perfect way to share your craft with the people you love. Best of all, most of these gifts can be ordered for in-store pick up in time for Christmas.

The Landscape/Wildlife Photographer

If taking photos in the great outdoors is more your speed, gifting your work as a print is a great way to share your passion with family and friends this holiday season. Show off those incredible landscapes you’ve captured or your best wildlife shots! Our glossy and pearl enlargements go all the way up to 44×96 in size, with mounting and laminating options available. Or choose from our selection of fine art prints that are available for last-minute pick-up, including canvas, bamboo, metallic paper and metallic canvas. They make great wall décor for that blank spot in a family member’s home or a friend’s office.

Learn a little more about our fine art prints to see which one is best suited for your images:

Bamboo Prints: Environmentally-friendly, ultra-matte and finely-crafted, Hahnemühle Bamboo is the world’s first Fine Art inkjet paper made from 90% bamboo fibres. It meets the most stringent age resistance requirements, and offers a unique combination of sustainable bamboo fibres, soft surface texture and impressive print quality that will give your photo outstanding expression and soul.

Canvas Prints: Our canvas prints are printed with special pigment, right to the edges of the unframed, premium canvas. You can choose to frame it flat or stretch it yourself! (Note this is not a Canvas Gallery Wrap)

Metallic Prints: These prints have a unique high-gloss pearlescent finish that allows for exceptional image clarity and brilliant colour reproduction.

Metallic Canvas: Our Metallic Canvas will give your images an intense warmth and depth. Through an interplay of transparency, refraction, coating and multiple reflections, you will notice silver-white and metallic reflection effects. (Note this is not a Canvas Gallery Wrap)

Have your image printed as a single print, or split your image up into several prints that can be assembled side-by-side for eye-catching wall décor!

The Family Photographer

You’re the person the family always relies on to get the shot, whether it’s birthdays, holidays or all those special moments in between. With hundreds (if not thousands) of photos of the whole family at your disposal, you’ve got lots to work with to create thoughtful gifts for the holidays!

Each photo you take preserves a special moment in time. Why not give a print of those memories to those who will cherish them most? A selection of your favourite moments captured on camera as glossy or pearl prints, with the perfect frame to match, would make a thoughtful gift. The options are endless but could include anything from family portraits to candids of the kids, or photos of special milestones that happened over the last year. Canvas Gallery Wraps are also a beautiful way to preserve and showcase a special moment in time for your loved ones. The canvases come ready to hang, and you can choose from framed canvases as well for a more finished look.

If picking just a few photos to gift is too hard, then a photo book is the perfect gift to give, and our Express Books, Book-It Mini Books and Instagram Books can be ordered for last-minute pick-up. If Instagram is how you often share your photos, an Instagram Book is a great way to showcase your square Instagram photos offline for people like grandparents who may not see them otherwise. Or choose any of our other photo book options, like our Express Books and Book-It Mini Books, which you can customize with themed templates to pop your photos into.

Need Your Gifts in Time for Christmas? Order Soon!

Before you order your photo gifts, make sure to check our list of holiday cut-off dates for in-store pick-up to ensure your order will be ready in time for Christmas!

To start creating gifts with your photos, head over to our Photolab, download our London Drugs Photolab App (available for iOS and Android), or visit our in-store kiosks!

 

How to Create Gifts for the Holidays that are 100% Unique

When it comes to making truly unique gifts for your loved ones, it’s all about adding a little personalization…and a lot of heart! In honour of Make a Gift Day on December 3rd, our Photolab Experts are sharing their tips for crafting your own holiday gifts that have that personal touch your giftees will surely appreciate this holiday season.

While you may be familiar with gifts like our mugs, which can be customized with your own photos, did you know we can also customize those items with your artwork too? Our free Take and Create Books offer easy-to-use templates inside that will help you design your own personalized bookmarks, buttons, face masks and 11oz mugs featuring your drawings!

Look for our Take and Create Books the next time you’re in the Photolab, or download online!

Just pick up your free Take and Create Book from your local London Drugs Photolab (or download it online here), pull out the art supplies, and stretch your creative muscles filling in the templates! Or let the kids have some fun with drawing in their own designs. Once you’re all done, bring the book with the coloured-in templates back to your local Photolab so we can scan them and print them on your desired item. Or, if you have a scanner at home, you can simply scan and upload the image files to our Photolab online!

Or you could colour in your own design for one of our 11oz mugs, using the template below – also found in the Take and Create Books.

Ready to start crafting your own uniquely personalized gifts? Visit your local London Drugs Photolab to pick up your free Take and Create book or download it here! Don’t forget – you can always personalize mugs, and much more with your own photos too.

To get ahead this holiday season, our Photolab Experts encourage you to order your personalized gifts early to ensure they arrive in time. Don’t worry though – for those procrastinators, we have a great selection of our Photolab products available for same day or next day pickup, up to Friday, December 24th including:

Just visit us in the Photolab for details. Happy Make a Gift Day!

4 Easy Ways to Stay Cozy at Home

Gone are the longer, warmer days of summer. With fall upon us, and the days shorter and darker, it’s time to switch to cozier activities. From cozying up your indoor and outdoor space, to comfort foods and fall flavours, to activities you can do at home, keep reading to find out how you can make the most of the autumn and winter months.

Cozy Up the Ambience

Candles create an excellent cozy ambience to any indoor space. Not only does their warm glow create a warm and inviting atmosphere, but they fill any space with fragrant scents, especially ones like baked spice, holiday cider, buttered rum, wildwoods, and one even appropriately named “Cozy Candle“.

Aromatherapy diffusers are another way to cozy up your home with warm, relaxing scents. There are so many different styles of diffusers to choose from, you’ll definitely find one to fit your home décor. Simply fill the diffuser with water and add a few drops of your essential oil of choice. Some of our favourite scents include eucalyptus, lavender, cedarwood, and one from Woodlot called “Cinder Cozy Cabin Magic“.

Also, don’t forget about lighting! Lighting is an easy way to add a warm and cozy vibe, which can be achieved by simply switching any of your bright white lightbulbs to softer, warmer ones. You can also pick up a Himalayan salt lamp, which also doubles as a nice decorative piece.

Stay Warm and Toasty

Once you’ve nailed down the cozy ambience, it’s time to bring the heat! One of the best ways to create a warm and inviting space at home is by adding extra blankets to your bedroom, living room, or any room you tend to lounge in. Heated blankets are also another option for those especially cold nights. If you’re someone who likes to walk around wrapped up in a blanket, you may like the Comfy Wearable Blanket!

Remember that you can also cozy up your outdoor space. Like with your indoor space, you can easily achieve this by adding a few extra lights for a warm atmosphere. You can also play around with textiles, like adding some pillows and blankets to your patio furniture. If you really want to enjoy your outdoor space into the colder months, why not invest in a fire pit or fire table? This will keep you or any guests warm and toasty as you keep the conversations flowing. TIP: If you have an outlet available on your patio or balcony, bring your heated blanket outside for an extra-cozy vibe.

Do Cozy Home Activities

If you’re spending a cozy day in, the list of activities to do at home is endless! Catch up on all of the movies you have been wanting to cross of your list, that book you’ve been meaning to read, or simply play your favourite vinyl to listen to some music. If you’re spending time in with family, build  a 1,000 piece puzzle, or try out a new boardgame together.

You can also get creative if you have a lot of photos on your phone or saved on your computer, and spend a cozy night in putting together a scrapbook. It’s a great way to showcase and organize all of your favourite memories. All you need is a photo album, some prints of your photos, scissors, tape, and any decorative elements. A label maker can also come in handy for dates and captions.

If cozy days in mean an opportunity to catch up on some rest and relaxation, treat yourself to a spa night at home! This can include lighting some candles or if you have one, turning on your aromatherapy diffuser with a soothing scent. Put on a clay or sheet face mask while you sit in a warm, relaxing bath with salts or bubble bath. Then, finish off with your favourite face mists, serums, moisturizers and body lotion.

Enjoy Cozy Foods

Fall is all about warm and cozy flavours; cinnamon, ginger, apple, and caramel, to name a few. You can find all of these flavours in the form of teas, cookies, cereals and other delicious treats and food items you can snack on while staying in. You can also check out this TikTok that highlights a few of our favourites.

Aside from your standard comfort foods like mac n’ cheese, fall is also the start of soup season! Nothing warms your tummy faster than a bowl of warm soup. It may be the perfect time to whip out your cookbook or search up a soup recipe online that you’ve been wanting to try. You can find everything you need from kitchen gadgets to appliances and even pantry staples for your soup-making in-store and online.

5 Ways to Destress Before the Holiday Rush

The holidays are coming quickly, and it is a busy time for many. Before the holiday rush sets in, we have some ideas to help you relax and destress.

1 – Take “me time”

Take a minute for yourself to reflect, unwind and relax. This can be anything from setting aside some time to meditate, read a novel, or enjoy a relaxing bath. Pull out your favourite bubble bath, bath pillow and candles, and kick back and relax. Me time is a great way to destress anytime of year. Consider an aromatherapy diffuser with some essential oils or a salt lamp to add an extra layer of ambience for me time.

2 – Exercise

Exercise can help you detach from the overwhelming to do list. Get out and go for a run, take a bike ride, do yoga, or work out. All are great ways to help relax and reset your mind and body.

3 – Connect with nature

Going for a walk in the woods is a great way to reset. Be sure to turn your phone off, and take your time to observe the natural world around you.

4 – Prepare for the holidays ahead of time

Plan ahead for everything from Christmas shopping, to holiday baking. Making a timeline can dramatically reduce your stress level heading into the holiday season. Knowing who you need to shop for, and getting it done early gives you more time to enjoy the season. Planning your baking and cooking ensures you block out the time in the kitchen, and allows you to get all your ingredients well in advance.

5 – Unplug

Social media and the internet have dramatically changed our daily routines. It can add to your stress level by eating up your time, and taking away from the things you should be doing. Seeing everyone else holiday ready can also add to your anxiety about your  preparation. Set limits on your screen time, or plan unplugged periods where you disconnect from your devices.

 

Hopefully these tips helped you relax.

 

Beat the Holiday Rush by Ordering these Creative Gifts Early

In the blink of an eye, the holidays will be upon us. It happens every year – you think you have lots of time, and then suddenly, you’re scrambling to get everything ticked off your holiday shopping list. Why not make this year different? If you’re planning to send gifts or cards by mail, then there’s even more reason to be proactive and start ticking off your holiday gifting list early. To ensure they are delivered in time, Canada Post recommends shopping and getting your parcels in the mail early, as they are expecting to see a short-term surge in packages in December.

Our London Drugs Photolab has all kinds of gift ideas, from greeting cards to tree ornaments, that you can personalize with your own photos for some truly unique and thoughtful gifts. The best part? You can order them all without ever having to step foot in a mall. By ordering early, you can get your gifts delivered to your home well before the holidays – either by ordering online or using our London Drugs Photolab App for iOS and Android. Or if you need your gifts even quicker, you can opt for in-store pick-up conveniently at your nearest London Drugs store.

Keep reading below for 6 creative gift ideas that will help you beat the holiday rush!

Personalized Greeting Cards

If there’s one thing that belongs at the very top of your to-do list, it’s your holiday greeting cards. Depending on how far around the world you’re planning to send your cards, you’ll want to give them ample time to arrive (preferably at the start of the holidays). Before the holiday rush hits, take some time to design your cards, create your list of recipients, and get them ready to toss in the mail.

Holiday greeting cards are a tradition for many families, as they’re a chance to get your family and friends caught up on your year (and show off your beautiful family with a few photos too). To help you make your cards extra special, we offer personalization options that allow you to add photos and text directly to the cards – no more hand cramps writing them by hand! And pro tip: order a stack of 25 cards to save! Our Photolab also has a variety of themed card templates for Christmas, Hanukkah, and general Winter themes, so no matter what your traditions, you can find a beautiful card to customize. Check out this blog for more ideas for personalizing your holiday greeting cards.

Christmas Tree Ornaments

Gifts like personalized Christmas tree ornaments are an excellent choice for neighbours, co-workers, teachers, or anyone else you want to share a little something with to wish them a happy holiday season. If you’re gifting personalized tree ornaments, it’s best to order them before the holidays begin and give them out early. That way, they have time to hang them on the tree and fully appreciate them during the holiday season!

We have everything from beautiful wood ornaments to ceramic, crystal, pewter, metal, and ball ornaments. Each one can be customized with a photo, as well as a personal message or date if you like.

Puzzles & Playing Cards

With more time spent at home this year, puzzles have had a major resurgence in popularity. Our photo puzzles are a fun and unique gift your friends and family will surely appreciate, especially if they’ve exhausted their own collection of puzzles already. Just pick a photo of your choosing, and we’ll personalize the puzzle with that image! You can even order a puzzle that comes with a matching storage tin. Another option is to personalize a pack of playing cards with a special photo. These make great stocking stuffers too!

Cozy Photo Blankets & Pillows

What do you buy for the person who has everything? Rather than scrambling at the last minute for gifts for those tough-to-buy-for people on your holiday shopping list, here’s a gift idea you can order right now: a personalized photo blanket. These blankets can be customized with either one image or a collage of images and come in ultra-cozy textures like sherpa and fleece. Perfect for the chilly months ahead.

You can also personalize a pillow case with pictures – we even have sequined pillow cases that reveal your photo when you swipe your hand across the sequins! Choose from festive red or silver sequins.

These gifts are a great way to give the gift of coziness, plus the photo personalization adds uniqueness and thoughtfulness that they are sure to appreciate.

Key Chains & Personalized Pet Tags

Know of someone whose pet is their best friend? Here’s a creative gift idea they’re sure to love: a personalized pet tag or key chain! You can order the tag or key chain with a snapshot of their beloved pet printed on it or upload a fun design with their pet’s name. Personalized key chains also make a great stocking stuffer or small gift for anyone else on your holiday list.

Festive Face Masks

Face masks have become a part of our daily lives again this year, and many are choosing to make the most of it by wearing masks in fun colours and prints that show off their personality and style. As a fun and festive gift, customize your own face masks for family and friends with the help of our Photolab. Add your own photo to the mask, or choose from one of our festive designs (like Rudolf the Reindeer to Christmas sweater pattern). Why not order matching masks for the whole family? Our masks are available in three sizes: small, medium and large. Gift them early so they can wear their new festive mask throughout the holiday season!

 

Ready to get a head start on your holiday gifting? You can order your personalized gifts and greeting cards online through our London Drugs App (iOS and Android), or using our in-store kiosks. Don’t forget: you have the option to have your order shipped directly to you or pick it up conveniently at your local London Drugs once it’s ready.

Creative Ways to Connect over the Holidays with Greeting Cards

Over the holidays, there is one item that can help us celebrate those connections and close the distance: holiday greeting cards. They are a simple gesture that feels like a warm hug, spreading holiday cheer and showing the recipient you are thinking of them- even if you can’t be there in person. Here, we’re sharing some creative ways to connect over the holidays with the help of our personalized greeting cards.

1. Annual Family Greeting Cards

Many families have a tradition of sending annual greeting cards over the holidays. Inside the greeting cards, they share a year-end recap to show family and friends what they’ve been up to over the past year, how much their kids have grown, and more. With so many unable to visit and be with their families in person this year, this annual tradition is undoubtedly more significant than ever. Customizing your holiday greeting cards is a thoughtful way to make that personal connection with family and friends from afar, updating them on life during these unfamiliar times and wishing them health and happiness over the holiday season.

Our Photolab offers a wide variety of customization tools to personalize your own family holiday greeting cards, from allowing you to add family photos to the inside and outside of the card to providing professionally designed templates in Christmas, Hanukkah and winter themes. Choose a family photo you already have or take some time to shoot a new holiday-themed photo (check out this blog for holiday photo tips). You can also add your year-end recap directly to the inside of the card using our text customization feature. Our collection of folded cards offer lots of space to fill in all of your year’s most note-worthy memories and moments. We also suggest ordering a few individual print photos that you can include inside the card. That way, the recipient can take out the photos and frame them or put them into a photo album!

2. Co-Worker & Client Greeting Cards

For many working from home this year, connecting with co-workers has only happened at a distance and over video calls. If you’re missing your daily coffee breaks with your co-workers, sending them a personalized holiday card is a thoughtful way to stay connected over the holidays. Dig through your hard drive for a photo of you and your co-workers, or snap a festive picture of your family, pet or Christmas tree. Use that photo on the front of your card, and then type a personal message inside. Once you receive your printed cards, consider including a gift card to a local coffee shop inside as a nice surprise! For those of you who are artistically inclined, skip the photo and scan a drawing you’ve done that can be featured on your holiday cards.

A personalized card can also be a thoughtful gesture to your clients to help bolster your relationship and thank them for their business over the past year – particularly in these uncertain times. Add an image that represents your business, and include a custom message wishing them well over the holidays. If you have a number of clients or co-workers to send to, order as a 25-pack and sign them individually for a special touch!

3. Keepsake Greeting Cards

The holidays are often a milestone for many different reasons, making this a particularly special time to connect with loved ones. Our greeting cards are fully customizable, so you can highlight your special holiday milestones with photos and text and send off to your loved ones right here in town or around the world. These kinds of milestone greeting cards make especially great gifts for parents and grandparents, who love a keepsake they can showcase proudly on their mantle or fridge.

Here are a few milestones you might want to share in your holiday greeting cards:

Baby’s First Christmas

A photo of your sweet little new addition to the family is the perfect way to customize your holiday cards this year! If you fancy yourself a photographer, grab your camera and stage a fun, festive photoshoot of your baby so you have the perfect shot to feature on your greeting card. Or match a photo to one of our card templates, like our ‘Peace on Earth’ design with a photo of your peaceful sleeping baby.

First Christmas Married

Many weddings turned into elopements this year or were pared down to only a handful of guests. Share some of your wedding memories with family by creating a special holiday card that doubles as a keepsake for those who were unable to attend your wedding.

First Christmas in our New Home

Moving into a new home is a special milestone and celebrating the holidays there for the first time is often extra special, as it signals the start of new traditions. Snap a photo outside your new home that you can showcase on the front of your holiday card. Or employ the help of a local photographer who is offering porch portraits – a great way to support local while preserving this milestone in your life!

 

Our Photolab is here to help make the process of creating your personalized greeting cards as quick and seamless as possible, while also offering specialty customizations to make your cards 100% unique and memorable.

Luxe Customizations

To give your greeting cards an elevated and memorable look, try one of our luxe specialty papers, which can be used to customize our double-sided cards, folded cards and postcards. Choose from linen natural white, linen white, matte soft white, matte white, shimmer silver, shimmer soft gold, woodgrain, stipple and techwave: the perfect touch for your one-of-a-kind cards.

Fast Turnaround Time

Our greeting cards are customizable and quick. Single-sided photo cards and our folded cards on premium photographic paper are ready in 24 hours. All other card options are ready in just 5-7 days.

Easy Ordering

Start personalizing your holiday greeting cards by visiting our Photolab online, or download our London Drugs Photolab App on Google Play or the App Store to order conveniently from your smartphone or tablet. Our easy-to-use platform will help you customize every aspect of your cards, from style, theme and photo placement to what is written inside and out. You never even have to leave the house – your order can be shipped directly to you. If you need them quicker, you can also opt for in-store pick-up at your nearest London Drugs.

Keep in mind, if you’re planning to send your greeting cards by mail this year, it’s better to get them ordered and sent off sooner rather than later to avoid delays during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season!

5 Ways to Spend Quality Time With Family this Autumn

Autumn brings the cooler weather, falling leaves, shorter days, and the start of cozy season. With it, comes great opportunities to spend quality time with family, and making memories. Here are 4 fun things to do this Fall with your family.

1 – Baking

Explore new and old recipes together. From home made baked biscuits or Nanaimo bars, to muffins or bread, pull the family together in the kitchen to enjoy crafting tasty treats. Not sure where to begin? You can find a recipe for almost anything online, or dust off one of the old family cookbooks in the pantry and finally try a recipe you’ve been waiting on. With everything from rolling pins and stand mixers, to flour and sugar, we can help take care of your baking needs.

2 – Game Night

Family game night was a staple in many homes before screens became the primary form of entertainment. Revert to those days by gathering everyone around the table  for an evening of laughs and entertainment to play a boardgame. Consider a classic family game like Scrabble, Operation, Clue, or Monopoly. Or you can try some of the new exciting games like Exploding Kittens, Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza, or Rat-A-Tat-Cat.  No matter the game you choose, the fun is just beginning.

3 – Play Video Games

Sitting together and gaming can be an entertaining experience for everyone including grandma. Introduce your kids to the classics you grew up with, like these Arcade1Up vintage cabinet games, or dust off your Atari or original Nintendo Entertainment System. If you’d prefer, you can also explore the cutting edge graphics of the all new PS5 or introduce grandma to the Xbox series X. Whatever system or game you choose is secondary to the belly laughter and memories made as a family.

4 – Family Movie Night

Whether sitting down for a classic, or the newest release, watching a movie as a family is a great way to end off the evening. You may no longer be able to walk down to Blockbuster to pick up the latest flick, but you can come into London Drugs as a family and browse the great movie selection. While in the store you can also find a new TV, Soundbar or home theater if you need to update some tech to get the most out of it!

5 – Design and Print Family Memories

With the weather cooling, and people spending more time indoors, it’s the perfect opportunity to revisit your memories from the last year, and create personalized mementos. From custom photobooks to personalized calendars, our Photolab offers a wide assortment of products you can bring to life with your precious family memories. Immortalize your dog on a pillow, or make grandma a 1000 piece puzzle of the recent family portrait, the possibilities are endless.

There are many ways to enjoy quality family time this autumn, and no matter what you choose, we wish you many laughs and smiles.

 

 

 

 

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