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Anatomy of a Great Gift Bag

I'm always saying that printing is a gift; now here's the proof.

At the Hotcards' open house, after all the food, and the music, the great giveaways and the, ahem, open bar, guests on their way out were given gift bags full of cool stuff – all of it full color printing.

What might immediately come to mind is a stack of flyers and brochures – not too exciting, but one of the most interesting things that the open house gift bag did was show the diversity of printing and print products. Hopefully, it even gave folks who do a lot of printing with us some ideas for their next big print promotion.

We were running around all day filling bags, as you can see, but by the end of the night, there wasn't one left!

row of gift bags

To begin there was the gift bag itself, which was donated by our paper manufacturer, International Paper. The bag, made from recycled materials, is incredibly sturdy and beautifully designed to express International Paper's commitment to environmental responsibility.

Inside the gift bag was a reusable shopping bag donated by The Millcraft Paper Company, a paper supplier committed to creating a sustainable, responsible printing industry. It was great to see all the green businesses that came together at the open house, because you can't be an eco-friendly printer without help. Your entire vendor chain, and the community you surround yourself with, has to be engaged with an eco-friendly philosophy. And if the open house was any indication, Hotcards is well on its way!

Right near the top of the bag o' treats was one of the coolest examples of full color printing I've ever seen – a classic car made entirely from paper, and not just any paper – our signature Carolina card stock.

hotcar1

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Also included in the gift bag were an assortment of gift certificates and event tickets generously donated by Hotcards' customers like The House of Blues and creole restaurant Fat Fish Blue. I went to Fat Fish for the first time the night after the open house, and it was amazing!

Check out the cool Fat Fish Blue logo design created by Brandon, one of the amazing designers at Hotcards. Brandon even developed the unique typography just for the restaurant. How many restaurants can say they have their very own font?

Keep digging through the gift bag, and you find an 18-month calendar featuring full color print design work by Hotcards. I love this calendar because it's a perfect example of how thin the line is between art and print design. Normally, I like to rock a classic art print calendar, but if you want to see what kind of cool stuff is being produced by artists working and creating right now, this calendar is the hotness.

It's also a great way to get to know the amazing graphic artists who work at Hotcards. Schedule your design work early, because these guys are busy!

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Hang on to those calendars – they could be worth a fortune to collectors someday!

The final, and probably coolest item in the Hotcards gift bag is a poster – but not just any poster. This poster has a great story behind it, which I'll tell you all about tomorrow. Hehe.

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