Hotel Reviews, Shopping
December 1st, 2009
Amsterdam (and really, my computer)
I recognize this posting is a bit of a divergence from my regular material but, given that I have always had a deep love affair with paper goods/stationery and now live abroad- I can’t help but become a bit preoccupied with my holiday card selection.
Not only do I have to convey that we have indeed relocated to Amsterdam, but I must also showcase our happiness, my sophisticated taste and the appropriate holiday sentiments. As you can see, that’s a tall order for just one card. Luckily, my determination and love of research, not to mention friends and colleagues who make beautiful stationery, provide just the fodder for this pursuit.
Of course, some may find this all a bit trite, presuming my intense focus on my holiday card choice is really just evidence to my massive amount of free time. YET, I assure you – I have been like this every year and will continue to be so given the importance (okay, perhaps its a bit inflated) I attach to my annual holiday card.
As an editor at Town & Country Weddings I was in charge of the stationery stories we ran and nothing made me happier than sifting through the multitude of cards. There are so many wonderful designers out there these days, plus the internet has opened up incredible options, not to mention providing a forum for new, independent designers. What can I say? I absolutely adore the process and hope by putting down some of my contenders here, I can encourage you all to enjoy the annual pursuit as much as me!
A list of some of my favorite designers and their holiday designs:
1. HELLO LUCKY – one of my favorite card designers out of London and San Francisco for wonderfully colorful, graphic heavy, letterpress designs. Their fold over holiday cards are simply adorable plus customizable!
DECK THE HALLS is one of my favorites, especially for those living in a city. It translates the warmth of the holidays, the homeyness, yet also shows how its a wonderful time of year for people, neighbors even, to share and experience the spirit together.
VESPA GIRL is ideal for the single gal who’s always on the go or a cute personal one from you to your girlfriends. (It can also double as a Thank you card to someone who is busy but always remembers your birthday)
NUTCRACKERS is one of my top picks because I simply love them and feel they don’t get enough play from holiday designers. While I like the blue and brown colors of this card, I would prefer to see it in a red and brown or red and green motif instead Nevertheless, it’s still adorable.
2. SMOCK – For the eco-conscious sender, these letterpress designs done on Bamboo paper stock are 100% biodegradable and charming. ORNAMENTS and the REINDEER designs are my two favorites. They both come as sets of 8 for $14 and are petite in size. They also make great gift cards – particularly for that “green” friend of yours.
3. MINTED is a stationery site that displays the work of various featured artists. They consider themselves promoters of independent designers and some of the very best small shop designers out there. Their intent is to promote talent and showcase today’s “freshest designs” and I have to agree, they do it all quite sincerely, and successfully. I have ordered cards from them in the past and consider them one of my first stops for my stationery needs and to get a good look at who’s doing what these days. This year, they have two new products which stand out – particularly for families and bulk mailings.
The first is the wraparound skinny address label
The second is their Minibook holiday card – ideal for a new baby, families with multiple children, or the indecisive since its the perfect way to include more than one photo. There is an array of design options and all can be customized. Below is my favorite.
That’s all I have so far but don’t worry…there’s more to come!