Personal Luxuries | The Reconnoisseur

Business cards that leave a lasting impression

These calling cards are the business

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Business cards that leave a lasting impression

May 18 2010
Mark Ellwood

Working for myself, I’ve always considered beautiful business cards crucial – they can make a lasting impression. Over the past decade, I’ve struggled to find someone to make my cards who shares my sensibility and doesn’t charge the earth. There’s ample choice in swirly, girly styles, but it’s rare to find designs both modern and masculine. Then I chanced on Industries Stationery, a New York boutique stationers run by graphic designer Drew Souza.

Souza, who used to have a shop a few blocks from my house but has now gone online-only, has a savvy setup, more made-to-measure than bespoke. First, pick one of the dozens of designs – in a nod to his passions, each is named after a musician or singer, from Bobby Darin and Perry Como to Shirley Bassey – then select the card colour and weight. I opted for the all-capitals Duke Ellington design, on heavy white stock – and 500 cards cost me just $135. (He’s soon planning to offer a DIY custom-card widget on his website, but for now, it’s phone or e-mail orders only.)

I also order a batch of calling cards; a retro-ish touch, these feature nothing but my name (in Ellington again, of course). The idea is to jot further info on the card by hand as required; so, for instance, a pushy dinner companion is restricted to emailing a follow-up, rather than calling incessantly. These business cards help me choose the kind of lasting impression I want to make.

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