Sunday, May 1, 2011

Calling Cards

The calling card of Marshal Foch
Taking lessons from the Age of Innocence.
The fresh demand for calling cards is driven by a number of factors. In the post-recession economy, job-hunters are finding the calling card a handy way to differentiate themselves from the masses. Another factor is the ongoing "heritage" movement—a nostalgia-tinged societal turn toward objects that last, smolder with individuality and are well-made—which has made its zeitgeisty way into the world of stationery.

And a personalized card acts as a quiet rebuttal to the white noise jabber-jawing of Twitter and Facebook. A rectangular symbol of restraint, the well-conceived card provides its recipient with just enough information.
In other words, these cards don't shout; they flirt—with potential employers, contacts and even love interests.
"A 'calling card' provides relevant information about where to reach you, but also clues about your style and character," said Luke Ives Pontifell, publisher and founder of Thornwillow Press, Ltd., a bespoke stationer based in a drawing room of New York's St. Regis Hotel. "Ultimately, a personal card is a useful tool. It helps you get remembered."

This isn't always the case with electronic exchanges of information. Said Emily Arden Wells, a custom stationer in Brooklyn, N.Y., "You can text your contact details, but they just get lost in that digital device; you forget the person."

Yet it's not entirely a rebuke to the digital age—the new trend falls neatly in line with a social media, personal branding mentality. "People are associating themselves less with corporate identity," said Ms. Wells. "You have your Twitter page, your Facebook page. Everyone's creating their own personas."
For a gentleman's guide to calling cards, go HERE.

For advice on designing calling cards from Southern Accents, go HERE.

More on the history of visiting card protocol, HERE and HERE. Share


Alexandra said...

I've been thinking about these lately! I must be attuned to the zeitgeist. ;) I think they are so charming. Now if the bow and curtsy would return - wouldn't that be something. Off to read your links...

Gareth Russell said...

Elena Maria, I can't thank you enough for this article and the links. I've actually been thinking about getting business cards done to follow "Popular's" release in July, but I've also been going back and forth on the idea of getting calling cards printed. On the one hand, I was nervous about seeming antiquated or ridiculous, but they've always seemed like a terrific idea to me and the link to the gentleman's guide to them was therefore very much appreciated.

I'm looking into a London firm and to collect them in June.

Thank you.

Julygirl said...

I know of everyday people who have personal cards simalar to business card.

elena maria vidal said...

Yes, Alexandra, how charming that would be(bowing and curtsying)!

Julygirl, I had calling cards made to match my high school graduation invitations years ago although I did not quite know how to go about using them.

Gareth, I am delighted that you are inspired! The Art of Manliness is a great site!