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Our New Calendar: The Perfect Little Gift
December 4th, 2013
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Once again, December has snuck up on me — but this year I mind a little less, because it means just one more month until I can pop open our new Colorful Quotes Desk Calendar.

We’ve gathered some of our most popular quote cards, mixed in a few new ones for added spice, and are delighted to serve up 12 months of wit and wisdom — an eclectic collection that ranges from Oscar Wilde to Coco Chanel, and from Jack Kerouac to Pablo Neruda (see below).

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The solid, but lightweight, CD construction means they couldn’t be easier to mail out to long-distance friends — or slip into a Christmas stocking. Because what could be nicer than a little gift that provides a pop of color and conversation all year long?

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And at just $12.95, they’re the perfect multipurpose gift to have on hand. Order yours at our online store here, or find them at retailers nationwide. (For example, Annie’s Blue Ribbon in Brooklyn, Parker & Otis in Durham, NC or Stationer on Sunrise here in Palm Beach.)

My! Mr. Reindeer, What Amazing Eyes You Have
November 14th, 2013

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We’re pretty sure that reindeer don’t fly, but it seems that snowy nights do bring out a bit of magic in these animals. Scientists have recently learned that, in what might be a unique talent, reindeer actually change their eye color over the course of the year.

In summer, their eyes are a golden yellow as this allows as much summer light through to the retina as possible. But in winter, they become blue to filter the light and allow better perception in low light levels … hello, wolf lurking in the snowy artic shadows.

Which means those reindeer might not have needed Rudolph quite so much on that famous wintry crossing long ago. Who knows? Personally, I’m delighted that there are still new things to be discovered about the animals around us … now how about those reindeer games?

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“Reindeer games” (above) is a new card for the holidays, but we also have several other reindeer cards in stock (below) ready at our online store, or to be found at a retailer near you.

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… Because who says reindeer don’t make it down to the tropics during their Christmas trips?

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“Yes, It’s Me Again” (above) was one of our first holiday designs and remains one of our most popular.

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This card (above) was inspired by the famous poem, “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”.

You can find all our holiday cards here, or just email us at info@jfalkner.com and we’ll help find a retailer near you.

And for those intrepid enough to read this post to the end, we’d like to offer you a special holiday discount of 20% off your entire online purchase. Just use the code HDY2 – but quick, it expires 1 December.

Holiday Safari Surprise (and special discount!)
November 7th, 2013

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We all like a good surprise, and here’s a happy one. We’ve always loved giraffes — we have a birthday card, and even a notepad — and thought well why not try one on a holiday card. (I photographed the inquisitive giraffe, above, at the Lion Country Safari Park in Wellington, Florida.)

It’s true giraffes aren’t exactly in the snowy family of animals, but we like holiday cards with a touch of eccentricity. So our giraffe cantered merrily through the design process, and became one of my personal favorites (the final design, below).

But who knew our stores would so heartily agree? The red-nosed giraffe is now one of our most popular new cards of the festive season!

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Or perhaps we should have known the giraffe would be popular. After all, one of last year’s winners was his neighbour on the African plains, the Zebra — who is available again this season.

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Check out all our holiday cards here. And as loyal readers of our blog, we want to extend a special holiday discount to you. Simply enter the code HDY2 at checkout for a 20% discount. (Good until 1 December.) Happy shopping!

London Trend Alert: Foxes
October 13th, 2013

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I’ve recently had the good fortune to visit London for a few research trips, and one visual motif has silently padded into each exhibition hall, or retail space I’ve visited. Nearly ten years since England banned foxhunting, the wily red fox has turned the tables and taken over London design. (Above, a detail from the Hackett store on Regent’s Street.)

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September’s Topdrawer London, the pre-eminent gift show in the city, included a veritable forest of squirrels and hedgehogs, as on these pillows, but the fox was always the star.

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At 100% Design, the UK’s largest design trade event, a dominant color trend was pairing neutral organic colors against vivid brights — for example, this scarlet side table anchored by walnut legs (above). And naturally, a red fox, adorning this logo, was right at home. (Treat your eyes and check out Young & Norgate’s gorgeous collection of handmade furniture here.)

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A month later I was at the Decorative Antiques and Textile Fair in Battersea. A treasure trove of unusual statement pieces it is a must-attend for London decorators. This mounted fox (above) was one of several I saw that day (though admittedly he looks none too happy about it).

Fortunately, it seems like the fox has cross-atlantic appeal, because one of our bestselling birthday cards at the moment just so happens to feature … a fox (see below).

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Happy Father’s Day
June 15th, 2013

On Father’s Day, here are some memories. I grew up an army brat, which meant that every two to three years, my family packed up and moved. If you thought this vagabond lifestyle meant we would lean towards traveling light, you’d be mistaken.

Nowhere was this more obvious than with my father’s multiplying collection of books. Hemingway jockeyed with Hesse, biographies of Churchill faced off against Lincoln, while Will Durant’s 11-volume History of Civilization stood watch above them all.

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This growing library would follow us to each home, and when I think of my childhood it is in the company of books, and of words. This is my father’s gift to me. Which is why I labor as much over the words on our cards as the images — and naturally never more so than with these two Father’s Day cards.

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Happy Father’s Day to all!

Our Home at the National Stationery Show
May 27th, 2013

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When a little 10’x10′ box in New York becomes our home for the better part of a week, it can only mean one thing: the National Stationery Show! It’s when the world of paper converges on the city to put on their smiles and peddle their wares to buyers from across the country — and, as ever, the energy and creativity on display was a real inspiration.

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The concept (above): With our booth, the idea was to bring a bright, little patch of Palm Beach to the Javits Center. We started our moodboard (see above) back in January, and what emerged over the months was: kelly green, sisal carpet and storage bins, sunburst mirrors, crisp white frames and jewel-tone ottoman stools.

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The end result (above): Et voila! We were delighted to see all these elements fall into place in the stage set we created for J.Falkner. And there must have been something lucky in that gorgeous shade of green — we had our best show ever, with great stores reordering and new stores discovering us.

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Cards were ranged along white shelves (see above). “Fabulous. (Is what you are, my friend.)” is from a new card collection we launched at the show.

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After spending the days cooped up in the convention center, everyone’s ready for a good party. The Louie Awards are always a high point, and this year we were greeted by dramatic swirls of paper cut-outs (above), which became even more incredible as one looked to see the details of flying birds and airplanes.

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Though our nominated card didn’t win, it was wonderful to be welcomed into this special crowd, and see, hand-cut into one of the paper airplanes, the letters of J.Falkner Cards (above).

Mothers: A Celebration
May 10th, 2013

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All my mother ever wanted on Mother’s Day, she insisted, was a hand-made card from her children. In an extreme case of careful-what-you-wish-for, she now has a son doing nothing but making cards all year ‘round.

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Maybe that’s no surprise. Because the unqualified enthusiasm with which my mother greeted my creative endeavours — even that less-promising phase with felt finger puppets when I was 8 — encouraged me to think that there just might be a wider audience out there. And now here we are, all these years later, shipping thousands of cards to stores across the US every month.

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Which meant the heat was on to cook up Mother’s Day cards to express full filial gratitude. Balloonists, birds and lucky clovers: these cards are for you, Mom — and mothers the world over.

This Little Piggy Is Going to the Louie Awards
March 3rd, 2013

Wearied celeb-watchers may have decided that the award season was finally over with the Oscars last week — but for those of us in the stationery world, it’s all just begun. Yes, dear reader, the Louie Awards finalists have now been announced.

This year the Greeting Card Association had to sift through more than 1000 entries from 220 companies worldwide, so imagine our delight when our little pink pig found itself near the finish line in the birthday card category. (As for its final place on the podium, we will have to wait until the ceremony on May 19th.)

This card (see above) is one of our favorites, too. There is something about this pig’s cheeky smile that charms us anew every time we see it. And talk of pigs also allows us to trot out one of our favorite quotes — from Winston Churchill:

“I like pigs.
Dogs look up to us.
Cats look down on us.
Pigs treat us as equals.”

So here’s hoping that the Louie judges will be feeling as affectionate about the cloven-footed come May 19th.

Fresh New Colors for Valentines Day
February 13th, 2013

Sure, the 14th of February is a day for red — red roses, red candies, red-hearted cards. But here at J.Falkner, we also like spinning slightly unexpected color stories in our greetings.

After all, what could be sweeter for a loved one than a card in ice cream colors like pink and peach? We turned to our pantone book and paired a pretty pink and an orange sorbet (above) for a new trio of cards.

In this overly ironic world is there anything more charming and fresh than a genuine blush?

We can’t get enough of zebras (above). To us, they clearly reveal God as a fashion designer-manqué — that crisp black and white pattern is far too attractive for mere camouflage.

A friend often signs off their emails with this expression (above), and we couldn’t resist making it into a card.

Light pink and soft orange are not just for cards. They work just as well with flowers, so we put together this sun-kissed bouquet of roses to brighten your day (above). Happy Valentines!

A Valentine Story
January 31st, 2013

Today, as we turn our calendar to the month of February, we naturally think of Valentines Day. There are many legends around this event, but one touches us particularly.

The story goes that, back in the days of 270 AD, the priest St. Valentine cut up pieces of parchment in the shape of hearts and circulated these to buck up the spirits of much-persecuted Christians.

Nearly 1800 years later, doesn’t receiving a little heart in the mail have much the same effect, reminding us of our faith in love and friendship? Without, we might add, risking any kind of martyrdom for the sender today. (St. Valentine was less lucky when the Romans caught up with him.)

Two hearts beat as one in this playful interpretation of a Venn diagram (above).

And we wouldn’t be able to call ourselves Palm Beach stationers without featuring at least a couple of flamingos (above) in our Valentine collection.

See all our Valentines cards here, and feel free to order a few now to arrive before the 14th — or find them at retailers across the country (and in Canada, too, where select Indigo stores will be stocking them).