Cardtorial Blog


Thanks for visiting the blog! A little about us: our story started with a single wooden card. Entering our sixth year of business, our small business has grown from a one-woman operation into a team of six creative and strong women.

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Cute Surprises to celebrate a Friend's Birthday!


There’s a reason the good ol’ fashioned surprise party is a birthday classic — it’s so fun! But sometimes you might want to do something a bit different to celebrate your friend’s big day… maybe a smaller surprise, or a present more uniquely suited to her personality. Perhaps make a plan for just the two of you to spend quality time together! You’re in luck because we rounded up our favorite ideas for any friend’s birthday surprise. Just add cake!


1. Is your best friend a total book lover? Surprise her with a Best Friends Book Club! Pick a book you think she might enjoy, buy two copies (one for you and one for her), wrap them up, and promise to read it along with her and provide the snacks when you get together to chat about it. A pro tip: pick one that’s been made into a movie, and turn your book club into a movie night! A few of our faves include Call Me By Your Name, Crazy Rich Asians, The Devil Wears Prada, and Eat, Pray, Love.



 2. This idea will take a bit of time and energy, but we think it’s totally worth it: fill a lovely keepsake wooden box with 365 notes for your friend. You can even color code them and break them into fun categories like, “Things we should do together,” “Remember when…” and “For when you need a pep talk,” so that she always knows which note to grab. This gorgeous keepsake is a heartfelt gift that keeps on giving throughout the year to come. (We have the perfect keepsake box, handmade and meant to last forever!) 



3. Are you an artist? Show your bestie some love and put those skills to work by drawing,  painting, or taking a photographic portrait of her pet, the two of you, or the facade of her home! If you aren’t particularly artistically-inclined, we love Rebecca Lynn Illustration’s style — speaking from experience, she’s lovely to work with, a super talented artist, and a fellow female small business owner.


4. Put together a spa night and surprise her with a self care-focused birthday! Just pick up a couple of sheet masks, a lavender or eucalyptus-scented candle, some fun nail polishes, and anything else you might need for a chill night in, wrap it all up in a cute basket, and head on over. 



5. Want to create a keepsake this birthday, something you’ll treasure for years to come? Pick a journal perfect for your best friend, then begin filling it out as if you’re writing an ongoing letter to her. On her birthday, give it to her and ask her to contribute, as well! Pass it back and forth for as long as it takes to fill the journal, creating a keepsake of your friendship to treasure for years to come. [May we suggest one of our journals for this thoughtful present? We have a bunch of cute designs, so you’re sure to find one perfect for your friend!)


6. Are the two of you long distance BFFs? Send her a care package filled with little things you think she’d like! If she moved away from your hometown but you still live there, send all of her favorite things that will remind her of home!



7. For the wine loving best friend, we recently discovered Speak Wines and think they’re the cutest! Pick red, white, rosé, or sparkling, then select a fun custom label — they have one for any occasion. Plus, a beautiful bottle pairs perfectly with our new Fine Wine birthday card. Add a custom engraved message for an extra special touch!



How to be the best wedding guest ever!

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Wedding season is on! You’ve put together your go-to wedding look (Cute, but comfy. Fun, but not too memorable — this dress has six weddings to attend this summer!), booked your tickets to each destination wedding, and are ready for some good times with friends and family. We’re here (with the help of some of our Instagram followers!) to pass along a few tips to make sure you’re the life of the party and finish out the next few months with the ultimate title: World’s Best Wedding Guest!


1. RSVP ASAP! Whatever you do, don’t lose that invitation. The sooner you RSVP, the happier the couple (and their florist, caterer, baker, event planner…..etc.) will be!

2. Along those lines: don’t assume that you’ll be able to bring a plus one if your invite wasn’t addressed to “and Guest.” Sometimes your friends want an intimate wedding or inviting more guests simply isn’t in the budget, and respecting their decision is key. Plus, meeting new people at weddings is the best!

3. Send a card that won’t get lost in the mix. In the months preceding the big day, at the reception, and in the weeks after, the newlyweds will be inundated with cards. Be sure that your well wishes don’t get lost in the shuffle with one of our unique wooden greeting cards. The sustainable, American-sourced wood will set it apart and make sure it last forever. Add a custom engraved message, from you to the love birds, for an extra special touch!

4. Mail your gift directly to the address provided on the registry, preventing any worries about lost presents or the inconvenience of making sure gifts get to the right place on the wedding night. Plus, less for you to carry when the party starts!

5. Aim to arrive at the ceremony about 30 minutes before it’s set to start. And whatever you do, don’t be late! No one wants to walk in when the bridal procession has already begun (we’re shuddering just thinking about it!).

6. Pick the perfect gift! You know and love this couple—make sure they see just how much with a present only you could chose for them. Was the bride an English major when you met in college? Our I Carry Your Heart wooden keepsake box is the perfect literary-inspired place for her to store trinkets, cards, and photos from the wedding. Does the groom have an amazing green thumb? We suggest the fun Desert Garden or lovely Floral Heart designs, in that case!




We took to social media to ask our Instagram followers: what makes an amazing wedding guest? We had so much fun reading through so many awesome responses! Here are some of our favorites:


“A great wedding guest will take lots of photos and make a surprise wedding book as a gift for the newlyweds. I also suggest that when you see the bride, you quietly ask her, ‘What can I do for you right now to help you enjoy this day?’ Really, it works!” — Marian, Pennsylvania


[For that lovely surprise photo book Marian suggested, we happen to have the perfect albums! We suggest customizing the cover with an engraved message, like the couple’s names, wedding date and location, or a meaningful quote, to make this sweet surprise extra special.]


“My wedding guests were awesome in conducting a surprise flash mob by learning my favorite song in American Sign Language (I’m deaf).” —Kay-Yun, @blunarwhale, California


“I think an awesome wedding guest should never leave the dance floor empty, to see people enjoy their wedding would definitely make the bride and groom happier.” —@nurdandemir, London


“RSVPs on time and shows up on time. Abides by the dress code.” —@politalabonita, Oakland, CA


“Take pictures! When you’re the bride, you don’t get to hang out with people as much as you want to, so seeing other people’s pictures is so much fun. It’s like reliving the best party from everyone else’s perspective.” —Kimmie, New York City


*Some quotes were edited for length and clarity.


The Cardtorial Mother’s Day Gift Guide is here!

She’s your best friend, your confidant, and your #1 fan…and all since day one! We love Mother’s Day here at Cardtorial, so we rounded up some of our favorite gift ideas for your mom or a mother-figure in your life. We found something for every mom—each and every one of our suggestions comes from a fellow small business, and has been tested and checked out in person by our team, so you can feel good about your purchase! Read on to find something great…but just a warning to our Cardtorial team moms: maybe sit this one out until after May 13th (AKA Mother’s Day this year!).


I Carry Your Heart Wood Box [pictured above; photo by @raising.little.women]

Your mom is a collector. She still brings out baby photos, kindergarten artwork, and souvenirs from family vacations whenever you visit—you name it, your mom keeps it. She’s the family historian at this point! So what’s the perfect gift for the mom who collects everything? A beautiful, handmade wooden keepsake box to store it all in…you can even customize it for an extra special touch.



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M.Greenwood Jams
To taste M.Greenwood Jams is to love M.Greenwood Jams! We had the chance to sample a wide variety of this talented, super sweet mother/daughter duo’s offerings, and we were so impressed by every flavor. With both sweet and savory options, their unique creations are the perfect gift for a foodie mom, maybe even one who’s hard to shop for. We recommend Summerberry (one of their most popular flavors, made with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries) or Sunshine (made with carrots, orange, and tumeric). Yum!




Botanical Frame
We’ve all been there: it’s the night before Mother’s Day and you realize you totally blanked on a gift. You run to the drugstore, grab a cheap frame, and print the first family photo you can find. Not this year! You know your mom deserves the best. Instead, take time to find the perfect photo, to show off in a beautifully engraved frame made to last as long her love for you. With 14 frame designs to choose from, there’s a pattern to fit any mom’s style!




Mama Elephant Greeting Card
Did you know that elephant families are matriarchal? That means that moms lead the herd! We bet the same is true in your family (because it’s true in ours, too!). Celebrate the leader of your herd (your mama, of course!) with this super cute card.



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P.F. Candle Co. Soy Candles
One of our longtime favorites, there’s a reason P.F. Candle Co. is a classic: we have yet to meet a single person who doesn’t LOVE their scents and cool design aesthetic. Whether your mom is a Teakwood & Tobacco (a musky, bold scent) or Amber & Moss (clean and bright) kind of lady, she’ll love their soy candles, reed diffusers, or room sprays.




Big Dipper Greeting Card
Do you live far away from your mom? It can be so hard, we completely understand! Let her know that you’re always thinking of her—no matter the distance—with this beautiful keepsake card.




Made in Mayhem Jackie Wallet 
Want to gift your mom with something she can use every single day? We suggest the Jackie Wallet by Made in Mayhem, a handcrafted leather goods company based right here in California. And since you probably know how we feel about customization here at Cardtorial (…we LOVE it), we think it’s super special that you can have your mom’s initials embossed on any item for an additional $10.



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Ranunculus Journal
For the mom who has a way with words…or simply needs a lovely place to jot down her to-do lists, our Ranunculus journal is the perfect gift. Featuring an elegant floral design that fits any style, this wooden journal is built to last through even the most furious brainstorming sessions.




Gopi Shah Handmade Ceramic Mug 
If you want to give your mom something that’s totally unique and will last a lifetime (but still doesn’t break the bank), we’ve found it: a set of handmade mugs (we love the Speckled Crisscross design) from Long Beach, CA-based ceramicist Gopi Shah Ceramics. Special enough to make her daily coffee ritual feel indulgent, this mug will serve as a reminder each morning of your love and appreciation for her. (And another important feature for busy moms: they’re microwave and dishwasher safe! Woo!)



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Zoe Comings Jewelry
We love Zoe Comings' handcrafted, ceramic jewelry; it’s dainty enough to be worn everyday and for every occasion, yet unique and lovely enough to make the wearer feel special. Each necklace and pair of earrings feels like a small treasure, but at an affordable price point, making them the perfect Mother’s Day gift.

© 2019 cardtorial

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