• Posted on Wednesday, December 07, 2016 by

Glitter up Christmas with our designer cards!

Still not too late to buy your own designer Christmas Card from Ex Nihilo.  Join the large number of clients using custom designed cards to share Christmas wishes with clients, whilst highlighting their professional services and products.  The custom of sending Christmas cards is over a hundred years old and has become a must do for the more conscientious and customer focused commercial enterprises.  Ex Nihilo can ensure your Christmas card uses themes and images that either promote your business or focus on the festive period. Get in touch with us to see how we can help you choose the right card for your business.

The Christmas card above was designed by Ex Nihilo for a London based church. We can customize cards and ensure that any logos and other essential marketing messages are included within final designs.

Here is a history of Christmas cards to get you in the festive mood:



The first Christmas card was created and sent in 1843. A man named John Calcott Horsley printed the first Christmas card for Sir Henry Cole, the friend who had given him the idea.

Sir Henry had the idea of Christmas Cards with his friend John Horsley, who was an artist. They designed the first card and sold them for 1 shilling each. (That is only 5p or 8 cents today(!), but in those days it was worth much much more.) The card had three panels. The outer two panels showed people caring for the poor and in the center panel was a family having a large Christmas dinner! Some people didn't like the card because it showed a child being given a glass of wine! About 1000 (or it might have been less!) were printed and sold. They are now very rare and cost thousands of Pounds or Dollars to buy now!

As printing methods improved, Christmas cards became much more popular and were produced in large numbers from about 1860. In 1870 the cost of sending a post card, and also Christmas cards, dropped to half a penny. This meant even more people were able to send cards.

An engraved card by the artist William Egley, who illustrated some of Charles Dickens's books, is on display in the British Museum. By the early 1900s, the custom had spread over Europe and had become especially popular in Germany.

The first cards usually had pictures of the Nativity scene on them. In late Victorian times, robins (an English bird) and snow-scenes became popular. In those times the postmen were nicknamed 'Robin Postmen' because of the red uniforms they wore. Snow-scenes were popular because they reminded people of the very bad winter that happened in the UK in 1836.

Christmas Cards appeared in the United States of America in the late 1840s, but were very expensive and most people couldn't afford them. It 1875, Louis Prang, a printer who was originally from German but who had also worked on early cards in the UK, started mass producing cards so more people could afford to buy them. Mr Prang's first cards featured flowers, plants, and children. In 1915, John C. Hall and two of his brothers created Hallmark Cards, who are still one of the biggest card makers today!

In the 1910s and 1920s, home made cards became popular. They were often unusual shapes and had things such as foil and ribbon on them. These were usually too delicate to send through the post and were given by hand.

Nowadays, cards have all sorts of pictures on them: jokes, winter pictures, Santa Claus or romantic scenes of life in past times. Charities often sell their own Christmas Cards as a way raising money at Christmas.

Charities also make money from seals or stickers used to seal the card envelopes. This custom started in Denmark in the early 1900s by a postal worker who thought it would be a good way for charities to raise money, as well as making the cards more decorative. It was a great success: over four million were sold in the first year! Soon Sweden and Norway adopted the custom and then it spread all over Europe and to America.



Source: (click here)

  • Posted on Thursday, February 11, 2016 by

Fresh design strategy wins large food supplier client!

Beaming smiles all round prove fresh design strategy does it's job! 

Asian Food suppliers Noori Foods based on Green Lane, Ilford, become our latest client.  Their original banner and poster designs simply displayed text describing forthcoming offers on a plain white background. By simply added some striking illustrations using products sold by the large food supplier, we have contributed to an increase in sales we have been told by the proprietors.  They have been so impressed with our work since our initial poster and banner designs, that they have already placed further orders with us.

Don't be surprised if the quality of the marketing banners and literature provided by Noori seems more sophisticated in the coming months.  That is what we are hired to do...

A spokesperson for the group said:

"Ex Nihilo really do create something out of nothing.  We gave them a blank canvass literally and they provided us with amazing pieces of art for our marketing.  Many clients have told us they appreciate the new branding and the new imagery has already widened our client base.  We have placed further orders with the Ex Nihilo team and as long as they remain this creative our custom is theirs for longevity."




CALL US TODAY | 0208 514 0861 | M: 074 3205 3530

VISIT OUR OFFICE | 57 Green Lane, Ilford, Essex, IG1 1XG

WEB | ofnothing.co.uk | EMAIL | info@ofnothing.co.uk


  • Posted on Friday, December 19, 2014 by

Joining the dots makes life easier!


Hi I am Joel Kyari Co Director for Ex Nihilo,

Let me tell you about why I got involved in starting our creative solutions company.

Firstly during my 7 years working in the industry I noticed that there is little joining up in the field.  I noticed whilst working in my last company that they could not cater to all clients needs, so when they wanted books printed or screen printed t-shirts they would have to find other suppliers, which is a difficult thing to do as they have never been there and wouldn't know what the outcome would be. It's always nice to know that you can comfortably go to one place and get all your design and printing needs done.

This made me think I wanted to create a one stop solution for all the printing and design needs that potential clients may have. With this in mind over the last 6 years I have been compiling a list of potential suppliers with whom I have thrashed out the most competitive deals, meaning that clients obtain the best value for prices for any printables.

Secondly I found that too many companies operated using inexperienced and unqualified artists. This meant clients were being sold short on the design services with lots of inferior products and branding that made me seethe with rage. As an experienced qualified designer I wanted clients to know that there was much more on offer for them, something that would both inspire them and strengthen their corporate messaging without being over charged.

I have always wanted to put my passion for art to good use and feel that Ex Nihilo can be a vehicle for my personal growth in tandem with great productivity for clients. It is through mutual cooperation and respect that I believe optimum results can be achieved.

Really hope you will give us a chance...

Call 020 8514 2439 or email: joel@ofnothoing.co.ukfor more info. 

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