Organize Your Greeting Card Stash

Clean up your snail mail card collection in time for National Letter Writing Month in April.
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With the beginning of a new month there’s usually a few silly holidays out there to observe, thanks to websites like Holiday Insights. Did you know that April 8 is “Draw a Picture of a Bird Day?” Or that April 15 is “Rubber Eraser Day?” There’s one theme for April that I’m excited to get behind: National Letter-Writing Month. And thanks to stationery creators Egg Press and Hello!Lucky‘s Write On challenge, I’m guessing many of you are, too.

In 2014 the two companies challenged their staff members, friend, families and fans to write 30 letters in 30 days. To sweeten the deal a set of four letterpress cards was offered to each participant who pledged to send snail mail for a month. People loved the idea; according to their website more than 2,000 kits were given away. This year the challenge is on once again and April 1 is Day 1 of the initiative. This year’s cards, pictured above, were not only free, they came with a colorful Gelly Roll pen courtesy of partner Sakura of America.

I love to send mail, so I signed up for the challenge and eagerly awaited the arrival of my Write On starter kit. While I was waiting I decided it was time to get my card stash in order. The poor accordion file I used to house my collection was bursting at the seams. The two tidy boxes you see here took a little bit of sorting, filing and cleaning up to get to. If you’ve signed up to take the Write On challenge or simply want to get your card stash in order, here are a few of my tips to get you started.

Sort Your Stash By Life Event: If you’re late to a birthday party and realize you need a card to go with a gift, it’s much easier to find said card if you can go directly to the event you’re looking for in your stash. I spread all my cards out on my living room floor and began sorting into the following categories:

  • Birthday
  • Love and friendship
  • Wedding/anniversary/new baby/new home
  • Congrats/encouragement
  • Sympathy/thinking of you
  • Thank you
  • Everyday stationery

Once you start sorting you’ll find that you’re probably a lot closer to looking like a proper card shop than you thought!

Find the Right Storage Option for Your Stash: If you keep just a handful of cards on hand at any given time, you might not need a large box to store them in. But if you’re like me, let me introduce you to the Clear Card Keeper found at The Container Store. This hinged storage box comes with six tabbed dividers so that you can customize the exact storage you need inside. If you have more birthday cards than you have baby cards, you can make a smaller section for that smaller offering. I labeled each section with washi tape so that I could remove the tape down the road, if needed.

Clean Up Your Everyday Stationery, Too: If you have a lot of blank notes, now’s a good time to sort through them. I dedicated one of my card storage boxes to blank notes and daily cards all on their own. I made sure each note had an envelope to go with it and was paired with its mates. I like to pick up card sets, like this aqua-and-gold fine paper set from Paper Source, when on sale because they make great last-minute gifts. Simply add an embellishment to the front , tie with ribbon and it’s ready to give! If you have sets of cards you no longer care for, consider donating them to your local library for annual book sales. I also take extra stationery and trade with friends and keep some in my desk at work for impromptu thank-you notes.

Just How Do You Find All Those Cards?! The quick answer? Lots of places! A few of my tricks:

  • I subscribe to monthly greeting cards deliveries, like Olive Box’s All-Card Box, that keep my stash extra full. A few other favorites to check out?
  • Follow your favorite stationery companies and designers across their social media channels. It’s not uncommon to see artists post flash sales on Instagram or email-only invites to purchase new collections. To celebrate reaching 30,000 followers on Instagram Emily McDowell, one of my most-favorite designers, offered her fans a limited-time sale. Those types of surprises are a great way to add to your card stash.
  • Keep an eye on sale and clearance sections at your local card and paper shops, especially after a holiday has come and gone.

So… Are you ready to take the Write On challenge this month? If so, you can sign up for your stater kit from Egg Press and Hello!Lucky here. If you’re not sure if a letter every day works for you this month, follow #write_on for snail mail inspiration that’s good any time of year. 

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