Isobel keeps the agency Christmas card tradition kicking with fake Sunday league

The London creative agency dons bad wigs and even worse moustaches to emulate a Sunday football team that fell just short of winning the league.

15 December 2023

The creative agency Isobel has sent out its latest Christmas card. This year, the team has become Isobel United FC, an amateur 70s football league who, despite a shoddy season and terribly stiff looking hair, continue to head onto the pitch and try their damndest. The project includes team sticker cards as well as the standard tableaux shot by the independent agency’s in-house production arm Igor.

Isobel has made a bit of a name for itself with its Christmas cards. Last year, it was a Mary Antoinette-inspired tableaux shot in Mayfair, but the team has tried out all sorts over the years as part of this long-running passion project, including Glee and a Salvation Army brass band. While you might be seeing less celebrations like this from agencies as budgets tighten and the industry skews freelance, Isobel says the idea is still “alive in the industry” and “very much part of our culture”.


Isobel: Christmas card (Copyright © Isobel, 2023)

“When we founded Isobel, we set out to do everything differently to every other agency,” says Isobel co-founder and ECD, Rob Fletcher. “At the time, a lot of agencies were showing off, using the latest tech for their Christmas cards, built as impersonal apps or QR codes. So we did the opposite, creating a personal greeting to our friends and family featuring all the agency and having some fun.”

This year’s football theme comes from an initiative Isobel worked on this year supporting underfunded girls football teams. The tableaux was shot on location at Wealdstone FC and allegedly features a combination of fake and real facial hair. And a 70s Sunday league was chosen over a modern league because, well, it’s just funnier, isn’t it?

“As an agency we love to dress up and get into character but this year we also wanted to share a message of unity and togetherness,” says Rob. “We hope it will put a smile on people’s faces – but also support a wider message that we are all stronger when united.”

GalleryIsobel: Christmas card (Copyright © Isobel, 2023)

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Isobel: Christmas card (Copyright © Isobel, 2023)

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Liz Gorny

Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. In January 2023, they became associate editor, predominantly working on partnership projects and contributing long-form pieces to It’s Nice That. Contact them about potential partnerships or story leads.

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