Archive for April, 2012

We’ve Fallen for Tumblr!
April 25th, 2012
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First, we’ll start with a confession. We still don’t get Twitter. There, we said it. Feel free to retweet that. But Tumblr: now that’s social media of a different seduction.

Working our way through our twitter feed — the #s, the @s, the FFs, the RTs — we often feel like we’re trying to crack the Enigma code. Scrolling through Tumblr, on the other hand, feels like lazing through a lovely coffee table book on a Sunday afternoon. Pure pleasure.

Here’s why: Tumblr is all image (see images from our archive above), with little if any text. Simply browse through a ticker tape of pictures — speed past some, pause on others, reblog your favorites. There’s no better way to check the visual zeitgeist.

Our Tumblr — Color J. Falkner — has a loose agenda to celebrate color, but our magpie eyes tend to seize upon any image that delights us

Here are four other Tumblr blogs we particularly enjoy following:

1. The cool girl: Give a mouse a cookie. This Ecuadorean art grad is far cooler than we’ll ever be, but thanks to Tumblr we can still hang out. We love the chic, controlled palette of her images (see her archive above): nude tones, black, gray and white.

She also posted this picture of Steve McQueen’s driving license (above), an image emblematic of Tumblr’s appeal: random, intriguing, deeply stylish.

2. The super-celeb as someone-just-like-us (if we regularly stepped from yachts in the Med to suites at the Splendido Hotel): Beyonce’s new tumblr (above) has a freshness and spontaneity you don’t normally associate with a celebrity who trademarked the name of her first child.

3. The quirky photographer: Eric Telchin, of Boy Sees Hearts (above), has taken pictures of found objects that look like hearts, and who isn’t cheered by this intimate view of the world where love is there if only we look carefully enough?

4. The absurdly funny: if you haven’t already jumped aboard Texts from Hillary — fictional texts where the Secretary always gets the delicious last word — you have a treat in store (above). Even Hills herself can’t resist it, and actually texted the creators themselves.

Those are some of our faves, but we’d love to hear which Tumblr blogs you follow, too!

We’re in Real Simple Magazine this Month!
April 16th, 2012

One little circle, but a whole lot of delight. We really had to pinch ourselves this week when we were able to slap the “As Seen in Real Simple” button onto a set of our cards (see above).

For a stationery company, scoring a credit in Real Simple is a bit like an actor getting the call from Scorsese: it’s what we’re all secretly waiting for. We vividly recall when Real Simple magazine first arrived on the scene in 2000. We were in London, so the first few issues appeared sporadically, and were passed around our offices like samizdat.

What was this magazine trying to do, with its clean crisp typography, its luscious, languid, photography, and the audacity to put a few bowls or a single flower on its cover? (A pair of early magazines, above.) Surely, it wouldn’t last on a newsstand teaming with neon colors and ravenously smiling models?

Today, of course, Real Simple is a publishing behemoth, with a monthly circulation just shy of 2 million. Which goes to show it’s never wise to underestimate a market. There is space for sophisticated, measured design — and naturally this encourages us immensely.

How proudly our Leaping Zebra card sits among their other choices on the page (above). Charles Masters, a celebrated still life magazine photographer, has created a beautifully — dare we say it — simple shot.

Order a set of Zebra blank cards directly here.

4 Quotes to Live By
April 12th, 2012

Long, long before we started our card company, we were collecting quotes. Scribbled on little notes, distributed in emails, shared at dinner parties. When we found one that really resonated, we wanted not to forget it.

But, now that we’re in the biz, how to make our quote cards distinctive? Here at J. Falkner, when in doubt, we bring the sun in. Let’s make these cards as bright as they can be. Then let’s draw on our magazine days, and get bold and inventive with type.

So here they are — our “Colorful Quotes”, from Oscar Wilde, Emily Dickinson and Cole Porter (top, left to right).

Let’s face it: no one says it quite like Oscar.

Who knows where this one came from, but it spoke to us.

It’s true, isn’t it? But, like any bit of wisdom, this quote can be interpreted in different ways.

These cards are part of our current collection and all available online here. We also offer them in a great mixed boxed set of each of the 6 different quotes.

This collection has been such a success for us, we are creating a new trio, and here’s a sneak peek at one coming in June, a quote from Cole.

What are your favorite quotes? We’d genuinely like to hear: leave us a comment. Who knows, yours might be perfect for a “Colorful Quote” …

A Bounty of Blossoms for Easter
April 7th, 2012

Happy Easter! One of our favorite thoughts about this holiday comes from Betran de Born, a 12th century French troubadours. “Well pleaseth me,” wrote de Born, “the sweet time of Easter/ That maketh the leaf and the flower come out.”

So it is these delicious flowers and colors of Spring that we are putting in a Easter basket blog for you.

New York, being a super-size city, has a tendency to conjure up the most massive floral arrangements. These sensational branches of cherry blossoms (above) are found in the lobby of the Metropolitan Museum in the Springtime, and must stretch over 10 feet tall.

And yet a simple pair of hyacinths (above), with their dewy scent of Spring, are equally beautiful. Look at the luscious color combination nature provides: the rich green stalk and cerulean blue flowers.

Blowsy yellow tulips echo the pastel colors of a bowl of sugared almonds, to us one of chicest Easter indulgences.

How easily the magnolia blossoms bruise and fade (above), but in the right moment their pinky cream colors are matchless.

The perfect square patch of grass (above) is unexpected, but holds the fresh promise of Spring.

A perky little rabbit guards the napkin, while tangerine colored rununculas tumble out of a silver beaker. … And, remember, rabbits aren’t just for Easter. Our bunny birthday card (below) is a year-round pleaser.

Color Symphonies at Sea
April 2nd, 2012

We recently had the occasion to sail the high seas on a Caribbean cruise. Sure, the buffet plates were the size of serving platters, and the best-dressed couple on the boat were the Italian magicians, but surrounding us — and soothing us — was the bluest of blue seas we ever did see.

In fact, simple blue quickly became an inadequate description, as the approach of each island seemed to bring its own unique shade of sea.

The promenade deck was pole position to watch the constantly shifting colors of the sea. The navy cushions and varnished teak chairs (above) were appropriately nautical chic.

Arriving at Eleuthera (above), in the Bahamas. This emerald green reminds us why, for many centuries, the oceans on maps were depicted as green, not blue.

The flash of a white boat (above), against a deep rich blue sea, seems to welcome us as as we cruise into the port of St Maarten.

How adorable is this dolphinfish tile work we discovered along one of the pretty streets of Marigot, le capital of St Martin.

Look at this palette of blue laid out in the harbor of one of the Turks and Caicos islands (above). The progression from inky blues to rich cyan to shimmering turquoise could be a masterclass in color.

John Burroughs, the 19th century American naturalist, wisely remarked: “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.” We know when our senses begin to align, because fresh new ideas start to bob up to the surface.

And naturally we were card-inspired on this trip. The result is this anniversary card (below), which celebrates the beautiful colors of the sea we saw, and the sweet serenity we felt, cocooned in our little portside cabin.

(This card will become part of our new card collection that we’ll be presenting at the National Stationery Show in New York at the end of May. Stay tuned for more card sneak peeks to come!)