Birds, Charms and Boys Toys For Spring 2017

Hello,
I have been very busy designing and we have added more than 100 new designs for Spring 2017.

The new designs are across four new ranges, all with distinctive contemporary look. Fly is nature inspired, Charms is delicate and feminine, best-selling Bijoux has been expanded with over 50 new designs and last but not least, we now have a male range, Great Times. All typography is hand-lettered or trending brush-lettered.

The cards are across open birthdays, occasions and popular family relations. They are available to order now and most ranges can be ordered as a handmade or printed version. We proudly hand-illustrate, print and hand-finish our cards in England. Our FSC approved boards are from England and Italy and we pack with envelopes from Yorkshire.

A small selection of the new designs is available via our retail website or if you are a trade customer please ask us for a catalogue and a sample card and we will be happy to send one. 

You could also view the new designs when visiting our stand 3W18 at our forthcoming exhibition, Spring Fair, 05-09 Feb 2017.

Best wishes,

 

Is Card Publishing a Serious Business?!

I often get asked of what is needed to start a greeting card business and in fact whether it is a serious business at all. It is a shame that often people assume that greeting card business is simply a hobby and hardly earns any cash. I think it all depends on what is your product and how you run your business.

It is true that many new greeting card businesses (in fact many start ups) begin on the kitchen table. The sheer abundance of craft materials in the hobby market alongside the fantastic quality of digital print available nowadays makes a greeting card a very easy product to make and bring to market. This, alongside the fact that retailers like cards as a relatively low risk product (because consumers often buy a gift accompanied by a card) makes the greeting card market an extremely saturated and fiercely competitive market. The card designs are trend-driven and usually the life-cycle for a card is 6 to 12 months, unless you hit the right button then your bestselling design may sell for years.

So, if you are serious about turning your card hobby into business then this is another matter. To decide what type of card business is right for you, you would have to consider your skills, experience, the amount of capital you have and your personal preference.

Generally, card publishers publish two types of cards, printed cards and handmade cards. All card designs based on stamping, assembling, individually hand-painting etc. will be very difficult to product in large quantities for the trade and are considered suitable for personal use or hobby.

Printed cards are produced in large numbers and command lower trade and retail prices. They face fierce competition from cheaper printed cards in the Far East and tend to sell better in card shops than gift shops. Printed cards could be artists reproductions, collages or handmade designs and then photographed shots, photos of landscapes, flower arrangements, toys displays etc. They could also be commissions you have done for a private client who has let you use their work or elements of it for commercial use.

You could print the cards digitally to start with and once you have proven record of sales you can go and do litho printing (the difference between these two printing techniques will be highlighted in another blog post). I often hear stories of publishers just starting out doing large litho printing runs only to discover that they may never shift the cards. Tip: if you are starting out, make sure you have proven track record of selling your cards to the trade, not to your closest friends and family. It is very tempting to do litho print, where the cost per card costs a fraction of the cost for digitally printed card. However, the litho print runs tend to be in the thousands (usually a minimum of 1000 per design) and as such a litho print run is more expensive than a digital print run. Remember if you fail to sell those cards it is only a false economy and at the end of the day the cards may cost you more than having been printed digitally. You need to have large enough database of stockists who re-order regularly to make this venture viable. It would be good if your printer lets you experiment with different boards as the design can look quite different on different boards, which will also set your card aside and above the cheaper ones flooding the market in discount cards shops.

good-times-cars-handmade-sabivo-design-sm

Handmade cards are more special than printed cards as they offer a different shopping experience – something done by hand will always be more special and valued than something mass produced. They also tell the recipient that somebody had carefully chosen a special card for them. Hand-finished cards face the same concerns about printed cards but they have the added embellishments like jewels, bows, dried flowers, embroidery bits and any other trinket you could think of. Handmade cards are more trend driven than printed cards and often the add-ons can be the decisive factor of their uniqueness. When you make handmade cards, make sure you make them in batches or enlist the help of family and friends when making or outsource the embellishment process if you could afford it. It is tempting to buy cheap embellishments as they are widely available from craft shops. However, as the handmade cards command higher retail price (£3 to £6 per card depending on the size) and consumers nowadays are very savvy make sure you choose good quality embellishments. The board you choose is also very important and often textured, pearlescent or lightly tinted boards are used for hand-crafted cards as they not only are better quality, they often give a more luxurious feel to the cards.

fly-birds-handmade-sabivo-design-sf

There is a common misunderstanding of what is a handmade card. I have heard publishers claim their cards are handmade just because they assemble and pack them by hand or they have drawn them by hand. I would have to say that handmade card will qualify as a handmade when components to the design are added by hand. Any other packaging process does not make them handmade. They are simply hand-wrapped, hand-packed etc. as are many other products in business. The drawn designs would then have to be called hand-drawn, hand-illustrated, hand-painted etc.

So, here we are. If you are thinking about a card publishing venture choose what are you going to do wisely and remember you could always switch and fine tune when you go along. The importance is to start.

Best of luck!

SSK Signature

 

 

Last Minute Ideas for Dads

I tend to buy gifts very last minute and I admit, this blog might not be helpful in the foreseeable future. Thing is, Father’s Day is on 19th of June (in the UK), so not much time left for shopping and this blog might not help you at all.  But I’m sure that you’ll agree that when it comes to gifts, Dads are always overlooked plus finding a gift for a man is always unmistakably trickier than finding a gift for a woman and in this scenario any help is welcome. This year I decided to browse the net and see what is on offer that I liked.  I’ve made a little list of precious finds that will inspire you to go out there and get him something personal and really special….even if it is very last minute.

Jolly Drink

Let’s be honest, you could never go wrong with a drink and it’s one of the few gifts that would surely leave him on a jolly good note. If beer is his thing then this beer bouquet is simply a great idea.  Or if you are after something more special I could not help noticing that a couple of more pound notes and zeros would get him truly spectacular bubbles.

Mens Skincare

A little pampering will go a long way and whatever Dad says (‘lotions and potions are for women’…), I’m sure he loves it. Why not get him something from Temple Spa. With so much attention from the press, they are surely getting something right?!

Experience

Dad has got everything on the planet?! Don’t despair. Virgin are offering experience gifts, which in my opinion is much more exciting than any other gift. Choose anything from driving, riding, jumping, short breaks etc, there will surely be something your Dad would love to experience.

DIY Gifts

There are things that money could never buy and possibly are the things you made as a gift. I know it sounds like going back to nursery or school and I am sure you’ll say you never have the time for such matters. But if you are going to find 15min to make something then why not look at this wonderful list of 101 things to make.  Most of them are easy to make and I am sure whatever you make will be the most precious gift he’ll ever receive.

Socks

Ok, if it has to be socks, let them be this ones. I think I might get a pair for myself 🙂

Your Perfect Card

Slip a card with your perfect gift and write it by hand if you can. Your sentiment on paper will be a sweet reminder for your love for him.

X63 Rock Dad Greeting Card Sabivo Design

Because Dads are special…

Happy Shopping!

Best wishes,

SSK Signature

 

 

Win Festive Friday Giveaway

 

Festive Friday 2015

It is Festive Friday in the UK and we  would like to share with you our Festive Friday Giveaway. It is a wonderful initiative by the Greeting Card Association. It has the sole aim of creating a wonderful wave of love and you can read all about here.

All you have to do is Share and Like our posts on social media by 9pm TODAY for a chance to win this pack of 6 Christmas cards!

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram for a chance to win.

Good luck and Happy sharing!

SSK Signature

Finding A Niche

Every event is an occasion for somebody and the greetings industry does its best to make sure there’s a card out there to cover them all.

We have enjoyed a bit of a chat with the Editor of one of the trade magazines, Greetings Today and we are grateful that our opinion mattered. We have been mentioned in the latest issue of the magazine and you can read the full story by clicking on the link here.

Here is a selection of some popular cards for anniversary and new home.

Anniversary SABIVO Design New Home SABIVO Design

Next time you are on the look out of a special card for a loved one, think of us www.sabivo.co.uk.

Many thanks,

SSK Signature