From stitches to shelf: the inspiration behind Man Made Father’s Day cards

“If you think about Father’s Day, we don’t get to play with glitter and ribbons and bows,” Ashlee S., Hallmark Art Director, tells us—with zero regrets, btw. Instead of those greeting card staples, their quest to make dad-worthy keepsake-able cards led them to create a palette of “man-terials,” including colors, textures, embellishments, and processes. They turned a portion of the line over to Designer Riga S., who walked us through her process and the inspiration behind the Man Made Father’s Day collection. 

Hallmark Designer Riga S. holds several Man Made Father's Day cards from her collectionFor my husband today, tomorrow and always | The kind of love that’s forever | My heart is home with you

Hallmark Designer Riga S. takes a look at her Man Made Father's Day cards

I’ve been at Hallmark for seven years, and done several collections. I start with a lot of research: looking around for inspiration, reading books and magazines, trying to bring new ideas and different kinds of materials. For this Man Made Father’s Day collection, I looked at mens bags and fashion, woods and metals. We narrowed it down to fabric, faux leather, and wood—with lots of process and texture.

the swatched and materials that went into Hallmark's Man Made Father's Day cards

When I thought about fabric, stitching came to mind. I sew in my free time, and do embroidery as a hobby. For #my5days [Editor’s note: Hallmark charges our creatives to spend five days of every year on pure creative renewal], I took a Sashiko class to learn the style of Japanese mending. The traditional colors are white thread on indigo fabric—and I picked a really simple, repetitive pattern so I could finish in two days.

the patterned fabric inspiration behind Man Made Father's Day cards

It just seemed to fit with the design direction for this Man Made Father’s Day collection, so I decided to incorporate it and scan it and make it part of the collection.

Later, I found out it would be too expensive to do real stitching on the card, which also features an embossed faux leather tag and canvas ribbon. We embossed the stitched design on textured paper.

[Editor’s note: It feels totally real.]

Hallmark Designer Riga S. shares the fabric inspiration behind her Man Made Father's Day cards
Happy Father’s Day with Love

One of four cards from Hallmark's Man Made Father's Day collection featuring patterned fabric

Before I worked at Hallmark, my very first job was a very small startup company. As a designer, I had to do everything, from designing to preparing the file and sending it off to be printed. Sometimes you had to proofread your own copy. Here, we have so many people with their own expertise—so one card has a lot of people working on it. The collection before this one, I worked a lot with other artists.

For this one, I did a lot of the designing. I got to use my own hand lettering, too. Sometimes I started with the messages from our writers—like this one, “My heart is home with you.” The words and designs evolved over time—once I could see the whole collection, I made some changes.

Metal and fabric details from Hallmark's Man Made Father's Day cards

To me, creating is a way of expressing what you want to convey to other people.

When I make cards, it’s about ideas: combining the message and the design to bring it into a full package. Making something beautiful is my creative outlet.

Sewing, to me, is a way to spend time on my own to de-stress. I have a five year old—so when she goes to bed, I sew as my way of relaxing.

Close up of two detailed cards from Hallmark's Man Made Father's Day collection

Two cards from Hallmark's Man Made Father's Day card collection featuring fabric, leather, and copper

Love them as much as we do? Shop the Man Made Father’s Day collection online or in your local Gold Crown store. If you’re looking for more Father’s Day card or gift ideas, we’ve got you covered!

Photography and styling: Kelly C.



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