How to Create a Greeting Card in Microsoft Publisher 2010

Customize your own card by following these easy steps

Birthday card with people in background

Westend61/Getty Images

Creating a simple greeting card in Microsoft Publisher 2010 is easy to do, especially if you use one of the included templates as your starting point. You can customize the design to reflect your preferences and the personality of the person you're giving the card to.

Open Template Gallery

New button in Microsoft Publisher

To begin, open publisher and, on the ribbon, select File. In the left rail, choose New to see a selection of document templates.

View Document Templates

Greeting Cards template in Microsoft Publisher

At the top of the screen, under Available Templates, you can select an item from the drop-down list to choose which templates to view. Or, if you'd like to find something specific, enter your query in the Search for templates field next to the drop-down menu.

For this example, choose Installed Templates in the drop-down menu. Under Most Popular, select Greeting Cards.

View Card Template Categories

All Birthday template folder in Microsoft Publisher

Within the Greeting Cards category, you'll find subcategories like Birthday, Holidays, etc. You can choose one of the templates displayed, or you can select the folder to view all templates within that category.

For this example, select the All Birthday folder and choose the template named Birthday 66.

Customize the Color Scheme

Color scheme tool in Microsoft Publisher

In the right rail, above the customization options, you'll see a slightly larger thumbnail of the template. Under Customize, use the Color scheme drop-down menu to pick a color combination that you like.

The colors you choose only affect certain elements in the template. Some graphics retain their original colors while other decorative elements, shapes, and text will change to match the selected color scheme.

When you select a color scheme, it follows you around. That is, when you start a new project (even after closing and re-starting Publisher), the last color scheme you used will be the one displayed with all the templates. You can select the default template colors option to get the original colors back.

Change Layout Options

Font and other customization options in Publisher

Beneath the Color scheme option, if you want to, use the controls to change your font scheme, page size, and layout. The layout you choose will affect all the templates you're viewing.


Unlike the color and font schemes, there is no default option for the layout. Once you apply a new one, all the templates stay in that layout. You can choose other layouts, but you can't go back to the original view showing a variety of templates with different layouts. However, you can return to that all-inclusive default view by closing, then restarting Publisher.

Create Your Card

Page Navigation panel in Microsoft Publisher

After you've selected a template (with or without modifications), click Create. The first page of the card will open in the main viewing area. To navigate to other pages, in the left rail use Page Navigation.

Change Text

Drawing and Text Box Tool tabs in Microsoft Publisher

To replace the text in your card, click in a text box and start typing. To make font and color changes to selected text, use the tools within the Home tab.

To make other types of changes, select the text and watch for the Drawing Tools and Text Box Tools tabs to appear. Under Text Box Tools, select Format and use the controls to do things like emboss the text, change the font, or change the color.

Make Additional Changes

Page Design tab in Microsoft Publisher

To make further changes to the global colors or fonts, on the ribbon select Page Design and use the controls to make the adjustments you want.

Color and font changes within the Page Design tab affect the entire document. You can use preset schemes or create your own.

Use the Design Checker

Design Checker in Microsoft Publisher

Before printing a document, run the Design Checker to look for problems that might occur in the printing process. In the example shown here, Design Checker warns that the graphic is falling off the front page. The graphic is designed to print on the back of the card, which is on the same side of the sheet of paper, so it won't be an issue. But, Design Checker can alert you to these types of problems so you can fix them in advance.

To run Design Checker, on the ribbon select File > Info and choose Design Checker.

Select Print Options

Print button in Microsoft Publisher

To choose your print options (and view a preview of your document), on the ribbon select File > Print. Here you can specify paper size, number of copies, and other printing options.