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Hitting the social circuit? Pick a card, any card

December 8, 2008 | 11:02 am

Working on Sunday's story about the return of the social calling card, I ran across a wide range of options for anyone interested in making the custom their own. Here are just a few:

Avery Labels
If it’s mid-afternoon and you need a calling card by cocktail time, Avery labels can do in a pinch, but just remember what business etiquette expert Judith Bowman says: “If you’re serious about your image, that first impression needs to be an investment.” Handing someone a flimsy DIY calling card might be worse than not handing out one at all, so if you choose this route, spring a little extra for the sturdier, linen-textured cardstock.
Avery.com, $19.72 for 200 cards.

Moo.comCalling_moo2
A silly-sounding name but with a neat feature that pulls in photos from your Flickr, Facebook or Etsy account to slap on one side and up to six lines of text on the other, you could end up designing and creating your calling cards until the cows come home.
Although available in standard business-card size, we suggest the smaller, perkier MiniCard for socializing purposes. The 28 millimeter by 70 millimeter [roughly 1.1 inches by 2.75 inches]version can hold six lines of text on the front and up to 100 different photos on each of the 100 cards. One caveat: It is based in the U.K., so orders can take up to three days to print and five to 10 days for delivery outside the U.K.
Moo.com, 100 MiniCards, $19.99 plus $6.99 global delivery.

Mrs. John L. Strong
A more upscale way to experiment with the art of the social card can be found at Mrs. John L. Strong. Reps for the New York-based stationerA_call_card_brown_img_07312 has seen a rise in the purchase of its “signature cards” by the 30- to 40-year-old set; 2.25 inches by 3.25 inches with an octagonal seal in either French blue or brown and your choice of a single monogram initial (usually the last name) and plenty of space to jot down whatever pertinent information the situation requires.
Mrsstrong.com, also available at the Mrs. John L. Strong boutique at Barneys New York in Beverly Hills, (310) 276-4400 ex. 5533, 100 cards for $105.

Crane and Co.Card_crane2_2
Few names are as well-known in the paper business as Crane and Co. (it’s supplied the United States Treasury with its currency paper since 1879, satisfied clients include Paul Revere and the Queen Mum), which makes this Dalton, Mass., company a safe bet when it comes to more traditional engraved style calling cards, which are offered in a variety of paper weights, colors, fonts and motifs including coral, bees and fleur-de-lis.
Crane.com, 100 cards (2 15/32 by 3 7/16 inches) for $173, currently free shipping on orders of $50 or more.

Aardvark Letterpress
A local L.A. letterpress run by brothers Brooks and Cary Ocon, Aardvark has been in business since 1968, and has become the destination for the city’s stylish set when they are looking for solid, elegant and impressive business cards, fashion show invites and even hang tags (for a sample of their handiwork look no further than the nearest rack of band of Outsiders merchandise; designer Scott Sternberg swears by them). The best part is, the high-end look and feel comes at a surprisingly affordable price and relatively quick turn around of about 10 days.
Aardvarkletterpress.com, 100 cards roughly $150 to $250, 2500 West 7th St., Los Angeles, CA 90057 (213) 388-2271.
-- Adam Tschorn

adam.tschorn@latimes.com
Photos: from top: Moo MiniCards; center: signature cards from Mrs John L. Strong; bottom: mock-up of one of the many calling card styles available at Crane and Co.

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