Tips for selecting a New Year's greeting

Choosing a New Year's greeting this year? Representatives of some of the top greeting-card Web sites offer suggestions to make your card stand out from the rest:

■ Skip the traditional red and green or blue color scheme and try something unexpected. Black, gold and silver are always celebratory. Other popular color combos this year are citrus colors such as orange and yellow; rainbow palettes; and pastels. "We're seeing great interest in neutrals — combinations of gray and black with a pop of yellow," says Laura Ching, co-founder of Tiny Prints.

■ Choose a greeting with a more general sentiment, instead of "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays." It could simply be "Happy New Year," but other options include "Winter Wishes to You and Your Family," "Love and Cheer" and "Peace."

■ Use this chance to recap the entire year, highlighting family milestones. And use snapshots from your holiday festivities to make the card truly up-to-the-minute.

■ Embrace the New Year's theme in your photo by outfitting your clan in party hats or posing with sparklers or noisemakers.

■ Or let your photos dictate your card choice. If you have a great photo of your family's summer beach trip, try a greeting that emphasizes "warm wishes."

Becky Sher, McClatchy-Tribune

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