July 27, 2011

Just in Time for Christmas in July, jacquielawson.com Unveils Much-Anticipated Design of 2011 Advent Calendar

LURGASHALL, England, July 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- On April 29, the city of London took center stage as the world united to watch the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. The city of London will once again help people connect--this time as they count down the days 'til Christmas with the Jacquie Lawson Advent Calendar. The enormous popularity of the first calendar in 2010 took the Jacquie Lawson team by surprise--it sold more than 700,000 copies, primarily in the U.S. and mainly through word-of-mouth--and gave families and friends an unexpected experience to share during the Christmas season.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110727/CL41931 )

"This takes a 160-year-old tradition--the Advent Calendar--and turns it into a completely up-to-date, modern digital experience," said Mike Hughes-Chamberlain, co-founder of jacquielawson.com. "It's so much more exciting, so much more interesting, there's so much more going on--it's almost as if the whole concept of an Advent Calendar has been leading up to this."

The Calendar includes 25 separate animations, one for each day of December leading up to Christmas. The user simply downloads the Calendar onto their computer and a snow globe icon appears on the desktop. Then each day, with a couple of mouse clicks, a new animation is launched.

When jacquielawson.com created the first Jacquie Lawson Advent Calendar in 2010, they weren't sure how it would be received, but the response was overwhelmingly positive.

"Thousands of customers wrote to us and for many, the calendar had become a daily dose of joy for the whole family," said Hughes-Chamberlain. "We heard stories of extended families living thousands of miles apart yet sharing the daily ritual of watching the day's animation and then talking or e-mailing with each other about it. Many customers asked us to keep making new Calendars each year so it could become a new family tradition."

Jacquielawson.com's small team of artists is now hard at work preparing for the autumn release of the 2011 calendar. Last year's calendar was set in a mythical German village but this year, the team chose London--not because of increased public interest in the UK thanks to the Royal Wedding; that was just a happy accident--but because of the city's stunning holiday decorations like the giant Christmas Tree in Trafalgar Square and the shimmering lights of Regent Street.

Hughes-Chamberlain hopes fans of last year's Calendar, who have been anxiously awaiting word on this year's design, will be pleased to see their favorite characters come to life in a magical holiday setting featuring many of London's most historic and recognizable sites, all scored to Christmas music.

Additional information, including a download of the 2010 Jacquie Lawson Advent Calendar and visuals from the 2011 Calendar design, are available to media upon request.

About Jacquie Lawson

Jacquie Lawson lives in the small English village of West Sussex. She trained as an illustrator at St. Martin's School of Art, and has more than 20 years' experience in many areas of drawing, painting and design, including architectural perspectives, book illustration and cartoons. She began working on e-cards and introduced her first offering in 2000 with "Christmas Cottage."

By 2001, her greetings were so popular that she teamed up with Mike Hughes-Chamberlain to meet the growing demand by creating the jacquielawson.com website. Throughout the years, additional artists have joined the jacquielawson.com team, and the collection of e-cards has grown to its current total of more than 180 e-cards, each one showing a degree of artistry and attention to detail rarely seen in this medium. For more information, and to see all of the available e-cards, visit www.jacquielawson.com.

SOURCE jacquielawson.com