C Greetings - Greetings card creation and printing App

The C Greetings app will allow you to create and print your own greetings cards. This app is available from the Windows App store here. Cards may be created by using the apps in-built library of pictures and verses or by inserting your own pictures and verses. To see a video demonstration of CGreetings click here

This page relates to the Windows 8 and 8.1 versions of CGreetings. For the latest Windows 10 version see here

CGreetings App
(1 of 6) Create and print your own greeting cards
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For a fully printable version of this guide click here (Opens PDF File).

Requirements

You will require a PC or Tablet computer running Windows 8, 8.1 or 10 and a colour printer. Paper for printing the cards on to needs to be either A4 (210mm x 297mm), Legal (215.9mm x 355.6mm) or Letter (215.9mm x 279.4mm) size. The paper is folded in half to make the card. For best results the paper should be either photo paper or white card with a weight of between 170gsm and 216gsm (gsm = 'Grams per Square Metre').

Optionally you may use a printer capable of double sided printing, although you may print cards without this feature.

For advice on choosing and sourcing envelopes see here

The app is now available from the windows store here

Basic use

Cgreetings Icon

CGreetings Icon

Tap the CGreetings icon to load the app. After a few seconds the main screen showing a blank front cover to the card will load. Assuming the screen is oriented in landscape mode, the screen is broken up into four columns. In the first column is a scrollable library of pictures to use on the front cover. In the centre of the screen is the front cover of the card (currently blank), in the next column is a group of options and input fields used to control the look of the front page. In the right hand column is a list of command buttons.

To use the app follow the instructions within the 'Work Flow' box as shown at the top centre of the screen (as below).

Workflow information
Workflow instructions - Read and complete instructions then tap the right arrow to progress through the instructions and the left arrow to go back to the previous instruction.

After completing each instruction tap the forward > arrow to the right of the instruction to see the next instruction. The item to action will be highlighted on screen by being surrounded by a red rectangle.

Keep doing this until you reach the last instruction, which will be to print the card. When you get to the end of all the instructions relating to the front cover of the card the next right tap will move to a screen for the inside 'verse' page of the card. After following these instructions a few times you should have learnt how to use the app and will be able to create and modify cards without them.

Settings

Before using the app for the first time you should review and adjust the 'CGreeting Settings'. To do this show the charms bar, Tap 'Settings' and then tap the 'CGreeting Settings' option. A fly out pane will appear on the right of the screen that will look similar to below.

Menu
Menu
On Windows 10 machines the Charm bar can be displayed by clicking the menu icon (see left) at the top left of the screen and selecting Settings. On Windows 8 and 8.1 machines drag in with the mouse or finger (on touch enables screens) from the right edge of the screen.

Settings pane
Settings pane

Double Sided printing

If your printer is capable of double sided printing (i.e. will automaticaly print on both sides of a piece of paper) tap on the right hand side of the double sided printing toggle switch to set it in the 'On' position. You will then need to set your printer to print double sided by default (see your printer's manual for how to do this). Some printer manufacturers call this feature 'Duplex' printing.

Card Validation

(Full Pro version only)

If you wish to be prompted if there are missing elements in your card, tap on the right hand side of the Card validation toggle switch to set it in the 'On' position.

Paper Size

Select the size of paper loaded in your printer by taping the appropriate check box.

Border and Gutter

Some printers may not print right up to the edge and may need a border setting to stop any pictures or text being truncated. A border can be set between 0 and 50mm.

Note that most printers have a larger unprintable area at the bottom of a sheet of paper. The app avoids using this area (by printing the card in reverse). Most printers will leave a small border without truncating unless it has a full 'edge to edge' printing feature for the size of paper being used (Check your printers manual).

A Gutter is the border on the left hand side of the picture and verse after the card is folded. If you have set an overall border you may wish to set this to the same size if you wish any pictures to seem centred. By default border and gutter is set to zero. You should print a test card to ascertain the best setting.

Reset back to Defaults

This will return the app back to its originally installed state. This will reset all settings, remove all elements of the current card being worked on and remove any personal verses you have added to the app. When the 'Reset back to Defaults' button is tapped a warning dialog will show. Tap the Yes (✓) option to reset or the No (X) option to cancel.

Front Cover Creation

Creating the front cover involves loading and aligning a picture, writing text as a greeting then adjusting its size colour and position.

Firstly select a category of card images you wish to select from. Do this by taping a 'Category' from the options at the top of the 'Action' column (options are Anniversary/Valentine, Birthday, Christmas or Other).

A thumbnail view of the available pictures is shown in a scrollable list of the left of the screen. Tap the picture you require and it will load into the front page of the card.

Alternatively if you wish to use your own picture you can tap the 'Load Own Picture' button (next to bottom icon  of the right hand column) and a file selection dialogue will show. Select the picture you require and tap the 'Open' button to load the picture.

If a picture does not have the same aspect ratio of the front cover of the card it will be either too long or too wide. In this case the image can be moved on the screen to get the best alignment.

Vertical Scrolling Icons

Horizontal Scrolling Icons

Icons for Vertical and Horizontal scrolling.

If the image is movable a Vertical or Horizontal scrolling icon will show in the centre of the card (as left). The picture should be dragged with a finger or mouse to the best position.

Note that a card cannot be moved beyond its boundaries. When loaded it will be centered on the screen.

Once the picture is aligned type some 'greeting' text (e.g. Happy Birthday) into the 'Greeting' box near the top of the 'Action' column. This text can be adjusted as follows:

Size: You may increase the size of the font used by taping the 'Increase Font' button or decrease the size by taping the 'Decrease font' button. You many also resize the font via use of Pinch and Zoom. Touch the Greeting Text with two fingers, and then move the fingers toward each other (pinch) to shrink the text or away from each other (stretch) to grow the text. For users without touch screens the text can be resized via use of a mouse scroll wheel.

Font: You can change the font being used by taping the 'Font' button and selecting from a drop down list of available fonts.

Colour: You can change the colour of the text by taping the 'Font Colour' button and then taping the required colour from the grid of colours that display.

Position: You may position the text anywhere on the page by dragging it with your finger or mouse to the required position. Note that the drag box that appears around the text will not be printed on the final card.

Age Badge: If it is a birthday or anniversary card you may wish to display an age badge on the card. This is a coloured circle with a number in the centre of it.

Age Badge selection

Red 19 age badge selected (Badge showing at top).

To enable display of an age badge tap the 'Enabled' check box within the Age Badge section (top right of the control).

You can change the colour of the badge by tapping one of the four colours showing in the Age Badge section (as left).

To change the age tap either the Decrease or Increase button the required number of times until the required age is reached.

For users with a wheeled mouse the age printed on the badge can be adjusted with the wheel. Just hover the mouse pointer over the badge and push wheel forward to adjust the age upwards and backwards to adjust the age down.

The badge can be moved anywhere on the page by dragging with the finger or mouse.

Inside Page Creation

When the front cover is completed tap the Inside Page (Edit Page on releases prior to version 1.1.0) button (at the bottom right of the screen). Alternatively you may click the large right arrow button on the card image. This will move to a screen enabling the inside page to be completed.

The inside page is made up of mainly text split into 4 sections and an optional 'Kiss' graphic.

The sections are:

To: Who the card is to, prefixed with 'To:'.

Verse: The verse

Salutation: A greeting gesture (i.e. "with all my love" or "Merry Christmas").

From: Who the card is from

Kiss (Optional): A small image showing kisses.

If you wish to use a verse from a different category to that selected on the front page (this is used by verses and salutations) tap a 'Category to view' from the options near the top of the right hand column Anniversary, Birthday, Christmas or Other).

Next type the name of the person the card is to into the 'Name of recipient' box (Near top of right hand column).

Next select a verse from the available list that shows their titles in the scrollable list on the left hand column.Tap the title to load the verse into the card.

You may also ask the app to suggest an appropriate verse by tapping the 'Suggest Verse' button (Bottom of right hand column). This will pick an appropriate verse that fits the front cover picture chosen. Note: this option is only displayed if a front cover picture has been selected, it is an in-built picture (i.e. not one of your own) and the category selected is the same category that the cover picture was selected from.

Alternatively you may create your own verse by tapping the 'Own Verse' button (Near bottom of right column). In the dialog that appears in the centre of the screen give the verse a title, select a category to enter the verse into and type the text of the verse. Then tap the Add (+) button to add the verse to the card.

This verse will also now be added to the bottom of the scrollable list of verses on the left of the screen. If you select another verse from the scrollable list you can reinsert your own verse by just taping its title in the list. This verse will be available until you either end the session, enter another Own Verse' or you save it.

To save your own verse (Full Pro version only) for future use show the bottom app bar by dragging up from the bottom of the screen (on touch screens) or by right clicking with the mouse. Now tap the 'Save Own Verse' button that shows at the bottom right of the screen to save the verse.

Existing verses can be edited (Full Pro version only) . To edit a verse first load it into the card by selecting from the list of available verses or create your own via the 'Own Verse' button. tap the 'Edit Verse' button to show the edit dialog. Edit the verse and tap the 'Update' button to use the edited version in the card. To save this edited version for future use tap the 'Save Own Verse' button. Note that in-built and saved verses are not overwritten, an edited copy is made of the original. Thus for clarity change the Title of any edited verse to stop confusion with the original.

Next type the name of the person the card is from into the 'From' box.

Down Icon

Down

Next type a salutation (e.g. "with all my love" or 'Merry Christmas') into the 'Salutation' box or select from a drop down list by taping the down arrow (as left) on the right side of the box. Note that salutations in the drop down list are broken up into categories, the same as the verses.

You may now change the size, colour and font of the text on the inside page. This text can be adjusted as follows:

Size: You may increase the size of the font used by taping the 'Increase Font' button or decrease the size by taping the 'Decrease font' button. Each time changes the size by 2 points. You many also resize the font via use of Pinch and Zoom. Touch the page with two fingers, and then move the fingers toward each other (pinch) to shrink the text or away from each other (stretch) to grow the text. For users without touch screens the text can be resized via use of a mouse scroll wheel.

Font: You can change the font being used by taping the 'Font' button and selecting from a drop down list of available fonts.

Colour: You can change the colour of the text by taping the 'Font Colour' button and then taping the required colour from the grid of colours that display. Note that if a light coloured font is chosen the background colour of the page will change to make the text readable.

Now if you require to add a 'Kisses' graphic just tap the required graphic from inside the 'Kisses' box or tap 'None' if you do not require a kisses graphic.

Kiss image selection
Available 'Kiss' graphics
The 'Kiss' will be added to the bottom of the inside page. The 'Kiss' can be moved anywhere on the page by dragging with the finger or mouse.

The inside page should now be complete. Review the page and then return to the front cover by taping the back button (in the top left corner).

Printing

When you are ready to print the card first make sure your printer is loaded with the blank card paper. If your printer is capable of double sided printing first make sure it is set up to print double sided (see your printers manual for this) and that Double Sided printing is set to on within CGreetings settings (Choose Settings then CGreetings settings from the charm bar).

Display the bottom app bar by dragging up from the bottom of the screen (on touch screens) or by right clicking with the mouse. Now tap the 'Print' button that shows at the bottom right of the screen. If you tap the Print button from the inside page the app will be returned to the front page before printing.

Printer selection
Example Printer choice fly out
A fly out dialog will now display on the right side of the screen that will list the printers available to you. Your list may look different to the one on the left depending on what printers you have installed.

Tap the printer you wish to use to display a preview of the card.

A preview of the card will be displayed similar to the following, showing the front and back cover of the card. If double sided printing has been selected (in settings) then you may preview the inside page by taping the right arrow Right arrow .

You may select the number of copies of the card you wish to print by overtyping the number of copies or by taping the + (increase) and - (decrease) buttons on the end of the 'Copies' box.


Print preview pane
Print preview screen

If you are happy with the preview tap the 'Print' button to print the card.

If the printer is double sided printing enabled the complete card will print out (this will take quite a few seconds).

If your printer is not capable of double sided printing the page containing the front and back cover will print first and a dialog similar to as follows will then display in the centre of the screen.

 

Re-Insert paper dialog
Re-Insert paper dialog
Take the printed piece of paper and feed it back into the printers input tray.

If the printer loads and prints paper from the bottom of the printer take the paper out, turn it 180 degrees horizontally and feed it back into the printer input tray.

If the printer loads paper from the top and prints from the bottom, take the printed paper out, flip it over and place it back in the top input feed.

For ease of manipulation it is usually easier to have only a single piece of card in the input tray.

Once the sheet is correctly located back in the input tray tap the Yes (✓) button to print or the No (X) option to cancel (Default is No). A fly out dialog will now display on the right side of the screen again that will list the printers available to you. Select the same printer to chose for the first half of the print.

It is recommended that you experiment turning and re-inserting the printout with standard paper before using expensive card until you are sure you know how to reload the paper properly as some printers may need to have the paper turned differently or may not need turning.

Once printed out hold the card in landscape mode and fold it in the centre to make the completed card. It can be made easier to fold if you use a ruler to create an edge along the centre of the card.

Emailing

Before using the email feature for the first time you must ensure your Windows Mail client has been configured and tested. See here for how to setup and use Windows mail.

Display the bottom app bar by dragging up from the bottom of the screen (on touch screens) or by right clicking with the mouse. Now tap the 'Mail' button that shows at the bottom right of the screen. If you tap the Email button from the inside page the app will be returned to the front page before emailing.

The following dialogue will now display.

Share card via email
Select an email format and image size

Email format selection
(Full Pro version only)

There are 4 email formats to choose from as per the dialogue on the left. The choices are:

  • Front page only
  • Horizontal images
  • Vertical images
  • Front page image with verse text
Tap the format of choice.

Image size selection

Now select how large you would like the pictures of the card to appear in the email by dragging the slider. The pictures can be from 25% to 100% of the original card (50% is a good medium for most email clients).

To share the card via email tap the Produce Email (✓) button. After a few seconds a share pane will open on the right hand side of the screen. Click the Mail (Send an email) icon and the Mail client will open and be populated with your card. Review the heading of the email (which will default to the salutation entered on the inside page of the card followed by the recipient name), overtyping to something more suitable if required. You can also enter your own message at the top of the email by typing where it says 'Add a message' if required. Finally type the email address of the recipient in the To: field and then tap the Send icon to share the card.

Facebook Posting

Before using the Facebook Post feature for the first time you must have installed the Official Facebook app. This is available from the Windows Store here. The app should have been logged onto at least once before attempting to Post cards from the CGreetings app.

Display the bottom app bar by dragging up from the bottom of the screen (on touch screens) or by right clicking with the mouse. Now tap the 'Facebook' button that shows at the bottom of the screen. If you tap the Facebook button from the inside page the app will be returned to the front page before posting.

The following dialogue will now display.

Share card via Facebook
Select a Facebook Post format and image size

Facebook Post format selection
(Full Pro version only)

There are 2 Facebook Post formats to choose from as per the dialogue on the left. The choices are:

  • Front page only
  • Horizontal images
Tap the format of choice. Note: 'Horizontal images' posts the front and inner verse page as two pictures.

Image size selection

Now select how large you would like the pictures of the card to appear in Facebook by dragging the slider. The pictures can be from 25% to 100% of the original card (50% is a good medium for most Facebook clients).

To share the card via Facebook tap the Facebook Post (✓) button. After a few seconds a share pane will open on the right hand side of the screen. Click the Facebook icon and the Facebook app will open and be populated with your card. Review the text of the Post (which will default to the salutation entered on the inside page of the card followed by the recipient name), overtyping to something more suitable if required. Finally click the Post button to upload the card to your timeline.

Note: When the share pane appears it may offer more choice than just Facebook. These are other apps that the card can be shared with. One of these will be email but the format of the email will not be as good as using the Email button (it sends card as two attachments rather than being properly formatted for view within the email).

Card validation (Full Pro version only)

If card validation is switched on the basic elements of a greetings card are checked to ensure they exist on the card before it is printed or emailed. If any element is missing a 'Validation Check' dialogue will display to show the errors for the user to correct. An example dialogue looks as follows:
Card validation
Example validation dialogue

If the dialogue does not appear after the print button or the Email format and size selection dialogue then the basic elements of the card are in place. If it does appear then review the elements that are missing, cancel the dialogue and correct the missing elements before continueing.

You can choose to ignore the dialogue by tapping the Continue (✓) button but this may result in a card with missing elements or error messages displayed on the card.

If you do not wish to see the dialogue on each print/email you may check the 'Dont show again' option and these checks will not be carried out in future. If you change your mind and want to switch Card validation back on this can be done from within the CGreetings settings charm.

Manage Signatures (Full Pro version only)

Instead of using standard text fonts to print the name of the card sender you may instead insert a scanned signature. To create a scanned signature use a scanner to import a signature from a piece of paper onto a computer file. This file must be in .bmp, jpg, jpeg or .png format. Next use a picture/photo editing program to select only the signature from the scan and create a separate image of just the signature. Next resize the signature so it is 75 pixels high. It should ideally be between 200 and 400 pixels wide.

To prepare the signature for import either save it to a file (that can be later opened in the utility) or copy it to the clipboard (refer to your picture/photo editing program instructions on how to do this).

To load the utility go to the inside 'verse' page of the card and then tap the 'Manage Signatures' icon from the Bottom App Bar (drag up from the bottom of the screen with your finger or right click the mouse to reveal the Bottom App Bar).  The dialog as below will display in the centre of the screen.

Manage Signature screen
Manage Signature screen

This screen is showing that the signature management utility has four saved signatures (this is the maximum number that can be saved). These are shown on the right hand column. The first of the signatures in the list ('Steve & Marion') is selected.

The selected signature will be displayed in the large signature box in the centre of the dialog (under the 'Get Signature' and 'Browse' buttons.

To select a saved signature just tap its image from the list in the right hand column.

To receive a new signature from the clipboard tap the 'Get Signature' button. The signature  will be received and displayed in the large signature box.

To get a signature from a file tap the Browse button and a file selection dialog will open. Browse to the file that contains the signature, select it by taping on it's thumbnail image and then tap the 'Open' button to receive the file.

Signatures cannot be greater than 50k bytes in size and ideally should be 75 pixels high and between 200 and 400 pixels wide.

If there are less than 4 signatures already saved the newly received signature will also be added to the saved list on the right hand column. If there are already 4 saved signatures, it will not be added to the saved signatures but it can still be used in the current card.

Deleting signatures: To delete an existing signature to make room for a new one first select the signature to be deleted and then tap the 'Delete Selected' button to delete the selected signature. 

Manage Signature screen
Screen after 'William' signature was deleted

This screen is showing that the signature for 'William' has been deleted and that now no signature is selected. 

Using signatures: To use a signature first select it by tapping it on the right hand list or receive it by tapping the 'Get Signature' or 'Browse' buttons. Then tap the (✓) 'Use Signature' button. The signature will now be displayed on the card and the From field will be disabled and display the message 'Scanned signature in use'

Not using signatures: To revert to not using a scanned signatures tap the (-) 'No Signature' button.

Handling coloured papers: If a light coloured font is used instead of the standard black for the inside page the background of the page will be coloured either gray or green. Thus any scanned signature will need to have a gray or green background to stop it appearing in a  white rectangle on the page.

The best way to correctly colour the backgroud of the scanned image is to use your picture/photo editing program to open the program and flood fill the white background eithey gray or green. The colour make up for gray and green is as follows:

Gray: Hex Code:#808080 or RGB Code 128 red, 128 blue, 128 green + Hue 0, Sat 0 and Light 128.

Green: Hex Code:#008000 or RGB Code 0 red, 0 blue, 128 green + Hue 85, Sat 255 and Light 64.

Some programs call 'Light' as 'Luminence'.

As each picture/photo editing program is different you will need to refer to your program's instructions on how to insert these values.

Windows 8 Paint program refers to the grey as 'Grey 50%'.

For a printer friendly version of this guide click here (Acrobat or other PDF reader required).

Save Completed Cards (Full Pro version only)

Completed cards can be saved for future use. This can be particularly useful if you use your own front cover pictures and scanned signatures (Full Pro version). Once saved a card can be reopened at a later date. They may also be deleted when no longer required.

Save a card

To prepare a card for saving first complete building a card (it is a good idea to test the card by printing it). Then tap the the 'Save Card' icon from the Bottom App Bar on the Front page screen (drag up from the bottom of the screen with your finger or right click the mouse to reveal the Bottom App Bar).  Note that the 'Save Card' button only appears on the Front Page app bar. You may first see a Validation screen telling you if you have missed off any of the elements of the card. The dialog as below will then display in the centre of the screen.

Save card screen
Save Card screen

This screen is showing the Save Card dialog. The 'Name' field shows a suggestion for a name to give your saved card. You may change this by overtyping the suggestion.

Underneath the name field is a list of currently saved cards. If you wish to overwrite any of the existing cards with this new or updated card. Tap the appropriate name to place this card name in the 'Name' field.

Note you cannot save a card if it does not have a Front Cover picture. You will see an error message if this is the case. Now tap the 'Save' button to save the card with the selected name. The card will be saved, the dialog will now disappear and you will be returned to the main screen.

Open or Delete a saved card

To open a previously saved card tap the the 'Open Card' icon from the Bottom App Bar on the Front page screen (drag up from the bottom of the screen with your finger or right click the mouse to reveal the Bottom App Bar).  Note that the 'Open Card' button only appears on the Front Page app bar.

Open card screen
Open Card screen

This screen is showing the Open Card dialog. The screen lists the cards that have previously been saved.

Tap the name of the card you wish to open and then tap the 'Open' button to open the card.

The dialog will now disappear and you will be returned to the main screen, which will display the previously saved card.

Deleting a card: If you wish to delete a previously saved card, tap the card you wish to delete and then tap the 'Delete' button. Note: The delete button is not displayed until a card is selected.

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