Big pink ribbon cards.

Breast cancer affects way too many people, including many beloved by Minted employees, so we wanted to do a little something to give back.  Minted will be donating 15% of proceeds of these inspiring blank stationery cards to Big Pink Ribbon.
The story behind these inspirational cards is both novel and star-studded: 120 women draped themselves in pink SHEEX (a new high-performance line of bed sheets) and laid down on Krissy Field to get this shot last fall. The women included Pattie Sellers (chair of Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit), Eva Sage-Gavin (EVP of Gap, Inc.), as well as our CEO & founder Mariam Naficy and CTO Niniane Wang.

This project was conceived by Asa Mathat, a renowned photographer who has shot everyone from Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Bill & Hillary Clinton, Desmond Tutu to the Dalai Lama. He was moved to help people affected by breast cancer see the beauty in themselves as they go through this life event/transition and conceived of the Big Pink Ribbon. The project’s aim is to unite the global community of breast cancer survivors and those who love them through large shoots that boost awareness and individual photographs of women that capture their stories.

Asa took the photograph from a crane with a “man basket.” The use of the crane was donated by Jim McPherson.

The idea for the Krissy Field shoot was born when Asa and a bunch of incredibly talented women met over dinner in New York last summer. The women included: Pattie Sellers, Joanne Bradford (Chief Revenue Officer, Demand Media), Desire Gruber (Producer, Project Runway), Christine Beauchamp (President, Ann Taylor Stores) and SHEEX founders and co-CEO’s Michelle Marciniak and Susan Walvius and Kathi Lutton (Global Head of Litigation for Fish & Richardson). Well done Asa and ladies! Your vision was certainly realized.

These cards would be an excellent gift for anyone, but especially for breast cancer survivors. They would also be great for writing holiday thank yous or could even work as a truly heart-felt Valentine. Show your support for this inspiring project today!

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Planes Lions & Dinos inspired Baby Shower.

We really love how inspiring all of Minted’s designs are… our invitations can really set the tone for an event, as well as provide lots of fun jumping-off points for party themes and decor. This was certainly the case with this Details Details Assistant Baby Shower, inspired by Planes Dinos & Lions by Christie White. All of the photography is by Sebastian Ho.

Check out all of the fun ways they incorporated this shower into a super fun day!

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Billboard Calendar in Martha Stewart.

We were beyond thrilled when Martha Stewart chose Emily Potts’s incredible Billboard Calendar to feature in her first ever holiday gift guide.

We loved so many things in the gift guide by the way…

Doesn’t her calendar look fantastic on the page?

You just cannot believe the labor of love this is! Check out the incredible hand drawn details on every page.

And not just the cover! You can go to the theater… Or take the subway!

Or how about a ball game?

And why not cozy up in a ski lodge at the end of the year?!

Emily this is truly a masterpiece… as soon as our team saw the first page we literally lost our minds! All of the little hand drawn details are just incredible. They bring us back to a bygone era and are an incredible way to showcase your family’s photos. Congratulations on the “Martha Seal of Approval” — a giant accomplishment.

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Family Photo Tips from Two Ellie.

Could this card be any lovelier? I think not! Here at Minted we think a great card begins with great design and ends with a sharp photo. Chica Design’s Be Merry design is so fresh! I love seeing a little bit of orange and blueberry in a holiday card. Paula, of Two Ellie, and Kellen, of Kellen Jacob Photography, are clearly two very hip parents with absolutely stunning children. I love how Dad is looking at son and Mom is looking at us like, ‘yep, this is my crazy gang!!’

Blogger extrordinaire Paula shared some tips from their family shoot on how to take a great family photo.

1) Dress in what you are comfortable in. You can wear complementing outfits without being too matchy matchy.
2) Keep it simple…especially when using a self timer like we did for the first image. If you try too hard it will show, and not necessarily in a good way.
3) Be yourself. Again this goes back to dressing in what you would normally wear and stay away from too many trends unless that is who you really are. People want to see the real you.
4) Have fun!!! So many people put too much pressure on having to get that perfect shot, but in the long run you will see the stress of it all on your faces. The in between moments are always our favorites anyways.
5) Using a self timer can be hard even for a photographer like my Mr. so asking a friend to help can be a life saver. It also gave us the chance to do something that comes completely natural to us…walking as a family.

Apparently, Paula and Kellen had such a hard time picking a card they chose to do two! (This is so something I would do.) Their other choice was Love, Peace & Joy by 175DesignStudio.

To add to Paula’s tips… I have a few of my own, just from looking at these great pics!

1) Accessories count! In a big way. Don’t you think the Panama hat and pom-pom scarf Mom and Dad are sporting add a lot of interest? And have you ever seen cuter little girl boots!?!

2) Contrary to what you may remember from your childhood family portraits in matching white button-downs and khakis, a little pattern is a good thing! The striped shirt really pops!

3) Action shots, like walking above, are not the enemy. They can work wonders in loosening everyone up and making the photo appear more natural.

4) Even if you’re at the boardwalk, you probably don’t want to include the ferris wheel in the shot, i.e. the simplest backgrounds… a grove of trees or a cement wall… are usually the best.

5) Finally, don’t crop too closely as you take the picture and you don’t have to center the shot–especially with the full-bleed cards featured above, you’ll actually want to leave some room for text to one side.

If you haven’t already, make sure to get out there and take your family picture this weekend! We have a friend in from out of town that I have already drafted to take ours.

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Calendars launch!!!

Very exciting news today around Minted parts… we are officially expanded outside of the stationery realm into a new vertical with the photo calendar.

Antico Noe by Carrie Eckert

The idea for the calendar originated from the fact that most drug store-type calendars are wonderful in that they showcase your family’s pictures, but are horrible to look at. We were never sure where to even hang them… the closet or a hidden corner seemed to be where they gravitated to. We wanted to elevate the calendar to the level of fine art and make it something that was a reflection of your personal style and aesthetic. And we’re pretty confident we’ve done just that with today’s launch.

Chic Poppies by Gakemi Art + Design

The designers we commissioned to participate in the calendar project reflect a sampling of designers who have contributed to the community in significant ways. We are always looking for ways to reward designers who participate consistently and at a high level and as you can tell from the results, this new format certainly got them all excited! The commissions originated from existing designs crowd-sourced through our usual challenge process. We chose designs that have been really popular or that from experience. we expect will sell well.

Boulders by Oscar + Emma

This is only the first phase of this year’ calendar launch; expect many more designs to launch soon! I can’t think of a better holiday gift than a Minted calendar!

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Joy Photo Contest Finalists

All of us at Minted had a great time looking through all the entries in our Joy photo contest.  Every single photo brought a smile to our face, and definitely got us in the holiday spirit. Thank you to everyone who shared a photo with us or chimed in with a “like” or “comment” about which photo they thought best embodied the spirit of “joy.”

It was a difficult decision, but we have chosen the five finalists below based on a combination of Facebook comments and internal voting. Now we’re leaving it up to you to select the winner.

To vote for your favorite photo, simply leave a comment below letting us know which photo you think should win. (One comment per person, please.) The photo with the most number of comments posted during the “voting” period will win the top prize. Please leave your comment by 11:59 pm PST on Thursday, 10/14. We will announce the winning photo on Friday, 10/15.

The winning photo will win cash (up to $300) toward a professional photography session, as well as $250 credit towards our gorgeous holiday cards, designed by independent designers from around the world and printed on thick, luxurious paper. The remaining four finalists will each win $100 toward holiday cards.

On Friday, we will also be announcing guest judge Joy the Baker’s pick. The winner of the judge’s award will win $200 toward our holiday cards.

Presenting, the finalists of the Joy photo contest…

Finalist A -- "Joy is having a best friend who happens to be your twin"

Finalist B -- "Elvin II decides to jump for joy everytime Auntie 'E' comes over."

Finalist C -- "Joy is wondering what they are thinking about."

Finalist D -- "Joy is getting an unexpected hug from someone you KNOW loves you!"

Finalist E -- "joy is.. autumn walks with your most loyal and precious friend ♥"

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 1 and Judge’s Picks

Without further ado, the First Place design on the Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge Countdown is The Womanly Type by Ann Gardner. You may recognize this design as the feminine half of Ann’s vintage-label-inspired “Type” series. The other half, appropriately called The Manly Type, placed 7th on this very countdown. For this First Place win, Ann will receive a $1,000 cash prize. Congratulations Ann!

The elegant combination of fonts are accentuated by delicate flourishes and bold graphics. The recipient’s name is set prominently in the design, making

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Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge: No. 10

We had so much fun blogging about the Top-25 rated designs of the Holiday Spectacular that we thought we’d do it again for the Happy, Happy Birthday Card Challenge, Minted’s first ever greeting card challenge. We’ll be announcing one winner each business day until we reach the First Place design. Let’s kick it off with our 10th Place winner of $100, “Birthday Bloom” by Lena Barakat.

In her very first Minted design challenge, Lena snatched the 10th place with an endearing birthday greeting card that tugs at heart strings. Her flower illustration is sweet without a trace of saccharine, and her message brings to mind the mothers, fathers, grandmas and grampas in our lives who are embody the spirit of aging gracefully. It’s pretty darn impressive to nail a top-10 win in your first-ever design challenge, and we couldn’t think of a better way to welcome  a designer to the community. Congratulations Lena!

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