HOW TO SPOT A TREND

Hero

If you’ve seen any Pack a Punch Designs on thortful then you’ll know that they are all based around current trends and themes, from the dangers of auto-correct, to the collective female obsession with Tom Hardy.

But how do you spot these trends? Sophie, the brains behind the brand, gives us the lowdown on identifying all things ‘of the moment’.

WATCH TV

It sounds obvious, but take time to catch the latest drama or the next big boxset on Netflix, so you’re ahead of the game. Alternatively, TV shows that have been around for a few years (think Peaky Blinders / Game of Thrones / Stranger Things / The Walking Dead) will have already formed a dedicated fan base and could no doubt be big sellers. Then you have cult classics, such as The Office, Friends and Absolutely Fabulous, that will forever be cemented in the hearts of their avid followers, despite the fact they have not aired on the big screen for a long time. TV is such a big part of our lives now, and unites us around common interests. I’m not ashamed to admit that my current conversation ‘icebreaker’ is “are you watching Love Island?”! I love the feeling when I receive a card that is based on a TV show which I invested my time in: it re-ignites my love for the programme and also shows that the sender put a lot of thought into their choice.

GET DOWN WITH THE KIDS

Slay. Lit. Bae. Squad. On fleek. Hashtag *insert noun here* goals. Yes, I’m talking about modern-day lingo. Despite the rise in social media and us millennials being constantly glued to our phones, writing ‘Happy Birthday’ on someone’s Facebook wall just doesn’t cut it, especially if you see them on a regular basis. It’s time to bring the phrases that originated on social media to the world of greetings. In order to appeal to the younger generation, you need to resonate with them, and what better way than with the art of language?

WHAT’S GOING ON?

Pay attention to the news and let your creativity run wild. The world is forever changing and somebody’s 5 minutes of fame could be your next big selling design! Who can forget yodelling boy? He sang in Walmart and the next thing you know he’s on the Ellen Show and launching his first album. We all love a ‘regular person turned famous’ story.

Also, politically themed cards are yuge (sorry!) at the moment. Trump cards are EVERYWHERE and they’re selling like hotcakes, regardless of whether you like him or despise him. Then you have the issues of feminism and LGBT rights. With International Women’s Day and ‘Coming Out’ parties on the rise, the occasions and people you can cater to are endless!

EXPLORE HUMOUR

The rise in popularity of rude cards simply cannot be ignored, and although they’re not to everyone’s taste, a shared sense of humour is essential in strengthening friendships and relationships. If you feel comfortable enough to unleash your crude side then do it! Even if it’s erring more on the side of ‘cheeky’ rather than ‘f*ck-sh*t-w*nk-b*llocks’. Is there any better feeling than knowing you’re helping people make their loved ones laugh out loud by purchasing one of your designs?

MODERN-DAY SENSATIONS

You can’t go wrong with a card based around modern-day phenomena, right? Vegans, social media, memes, and Love Island, to name just a few. These subjects were unheard of years ago but have now skyrocketed into our lives making them the perfect basis for relatable greetings cards. People want cards that they know the recipient will identify with and want to keep as a memento, and you have the power to create them!

.

.

Find Pack a Punch Designs here.

.

cardshit Swear Profanities Will Liven Up Your Designs

Card asset for blog

Hearts and flowers are not for everyone, we know that here at cardshit. The noughties and the twenty-tens (as we are apparently supposed to be calling them) are all about being rude, crude and bold about your feelings. So why should the greetings cards we send be any different to the banter we have with our mates?

No one can dispute the desire in the market place for sloppy, soppy birthday cards with rhyming couplets and fluffy messages, extolling sentiments that you would never even be caught dead actually thinking, never mind saying out loud. Nowadays though, there’s a trend towards being honest with each other: people are getting a bit of confidence and shouting their feelings from the rooftops, no matter how crude and unrefined those feelings are! This means it’s high time to consider expanding your range beyond the greetings cards your granny would send, and embracing the potty-mouthed greetings cards of the future.

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 14.06.34

We all enjoy a bit of banter every now and again, and it’s been well documented that taking the mickey out of each other in a harmless, playful way actually strengthens friendships and can be a sign of endearment if done in the right way. At cardshit, gone are the days of minding your P’s and Q’s, as we know that feeling comfortable enough with someone to trade insults with them often just means that you really feel at ease in their presence and count them as a true friend. 

In fact, using insults and being crude to one another as a way to show affection goes way back to Shakespeare’s time, and his most famous works are positively littered with enough hilariously rude nicknames and banter to rival any school classroom. (Watch this space for our next design, ‘Happy Birthday you elvish-mark’d, abortive, rooting hog’.)

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 14.02.40

Speaking of the classroom, a 2015 study by the Language Sciences Journal in America actually found that people who use swear words tend to have a higher level of intelligence than those who don’t. According to US-based psychologists Kristin and Timothy Jay, using swear words is not a sign of the “poverty of vocabulary” (the assumption that swear words are being used in place of more intellectually acceptable words), but rather people who have a wide vocabulary of profanities also have a wide vocabulary in general.

Aside from showing high levels of intelligence, swearing, being rude and insulting one another has also been proven to have a painkilling effect; a recent study from Keele University in England found that letting go and shouting out the worst expletive you can think of generally does have a numbing or painkilling effect, which explains why we are often heard shouting four lettered words when we stub a toe, or hammer our thumb by accident. It is believed that this pain-killing effect comes from our innate ‘fight or flight’ response being triggered by the audacity of the swear-word, which increases our heart rate and in turn, helps to numb the pain. So the next time your designer ignores your brief, relieve said pain by turning the air blue and let loose with your finest four letter tirade.

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 14.05.29

When it comes down to it, being a bit uncouth can be a whole lot of fun, and sending your mate a rude greeting card sparks a reaction that you just don’t get with any other card. In this modern age of smartphones, the internet and instant gratification, we all crave something a bit unique, something a bit extra, and something that genuinely piques our interest.

So it seems being crude is the new being nice. Why not embrace it and consider how your new ranges might get a little ruder, or if that’s definitely not your cup of tea, try sending your mate a rude birthday card this year instead. If they don’t ex-communicate you, you’ll know that you’re BFF’s.

Article by Lee Thomas, founder of cardshit. Find cardshit cards here!

Glastonbury Survival Kit: The Essentials

 

Untitled design

Glastonbury. The home of Michael & Emily Eavis, rolling fields, the Pyramid Stage, thousands of festival-goers, mud, rain, a sprinkle of sunshine, a lot of cider and some of the biggest music performers in the world.

Yes, it’s very nearly that time again, and whilst Glastonbury-goers are praying it’s not a washout, we’ve compiled the essential list of festival bits you’ll need to survive the Somerset music mayhem come rain or shine…

A sturdy and reliable tent
Do yourself a favour and make sure you invest in a good-quality, well-structured tent – like this one by Nic Farrell, of course! Yes it might set you back a little extra money, but it saves you being cold, damp and sleeping with a collapsed tent on your face.

Design: Nic Farrell

Design: Nic Farrell

Waterproofs
It wouldn’t be Glastonbury without a downpour, let’s face it! Don’t get caught out in torrential rain – buy a waterproof mac or poncho that’s going to keep you dry whilst you’re dancing away!

Design: Silvina De Vita

Alcohol
Whether you’re perched round a campfire with friends or heading into the madness of the festival, be sure to have a refreshing can or bottle in hand to truly kick-off the festival spirit.

Design: Cat Coquillette

Design: Cat Coquillette

Wet wipes
We believe these little white sheets are a slice of heaven at a music festival! Whether you’re scrubbing your make-up off, having a dry wash (five days without a shower can be tough!), or using them to try and make the toilets as sanitary as possible – don’t go anywhere without packing a couple of packs to see you through!

Wellies
It wouldn’t be a festival without the obligatory pair of wellies. Come rain or shine, they’ll protect you from all sorts of weather, including the famous Glastonbury mud!

Design: Ollie Bright

Design: Ollie Bright

Dry shampoo
You’ll be going days without a shower, so banish any sort of greasy, festival hair and spritz with dry-shampoo. Your hair will be looking as fresh if you had just stepped out of a nice, warm bubble bath! 😉 This card by Sarah Defriend just one in her collection of festival goddesses!

Design: Sarah Defriend

Design: Sarah Defriend

Backpack
Chances are, you’ll be too busy having fun running around and soaking up the atmosphere to want to carry your phone, money, camera etc. in your hand. Purchase a reliable backpack/bumbag which you can strap onto your body, and not have to worry you’re going to drop and lose any of your belongings!

Design: Angela Chick

Design: Angela Chick

BRING THE FUN!
Most importantly, Glastonbury and any other festival, is for letting your hair down and having fun. Round up your best group of mates, make sure you have all your festival essentials and prepare to laugh and dance A LOT. Most importantly stay safe and don’t end up a Baked Alaska (find out what that is here).

Design: Blumoose

Design: Blumoose

 

Got an occasion to celebrate? Make sure you send a thortful card.

Summer colour trends spotted in our card designs

Hello sun, Summer is officially here! In honour of this wonderful time of year, we’re paying tribute to the trending seasonal tones of 2016 that have managed to sneak in to our bespoke collection of greeting cards.

“Colours this season transport us to a happier, sunnier place where we feel free to express a wittier version of our real selves.” Leatrice Eiseman (Executive Director, Pantone Color Institute) hit the nail on the head when describing this season’s colour palette that transcends cultural and gender norms. We always knew our designers were ahead of the curve!

1. Buttercup, 12-0752

1

2. Limpet Shell, 13-4810

090815-pantone-color-limpet-shell

3. Peach Echo, 16-1548

090815-pantone-color-peach-echo

4. Rose Quartz, 13-1520

090815-pantone-color-peach-echo

5. Serenity, 15-3919

090815-pantone-color-serenity

6. Fiesta, 17-1564

090815-pantone-color-fiesta

7. Green Flash, 15-0146

090815-pantone-color-green-flash