Friday, January 29, 2010

Birthday Your Way judging is complete!

Well, we’ve finished up another exciting week of judging! The Birthday Your Way winners are sure to knock your socks off! We chose quite a variety- from hilarious and quirky to sweet and complimentary. The big reveal isn’t until March but here’s a little bit of insight about the winning cards for you, our contest-loving, blog-following peeps: The cards feature a gnome, a candy-sprinkled tongue, a fishing teddy bear, a provocative road sign, a birthday chalkboard equation, a fortune cookie, fireworks and breakfast in bed! Impressive, huh? We had a lot of fun filtering through all 2,575 submissions but it was very difficult narrowing them down to the winners. Hopefully, the contest excitement will continue to grow and we’ll be forced to get a bigger contest team! A little bit about our next contest: We’re changing up the theme for ya. It’s called “A Girl’s Gotta Laugh” and it’s all about encouraging women through a funny card. We’ll be accepting submissions from Feb. 8-22. Can’t wait to see what that one brings!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Birthday Blog

As we may have already mentioned a time or two, Hallmark turns the big 1-0-0 this year. It's a big celebration commemorated with parties, cakes, a special book about Hallmark's history, a contest (*ahem*) with cards made by you (Birthday Your Way). There's a lot going on. Sneak on over to Hallmark's centennial website and read what I have to say as a guest on their blog. While you're there, see what other Hallmarkers are up to during this special year...and check back often!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Cause for Celebration!

It's Hallmark's big 100th birthday week and we wasted no time getting to the celebrating. We kicked it off Monday with a party in our cafeteria, the Crown Room. We had live music. We had balloons. We had streamers. We even had skits. It was quite the bash. Here's the behind-the-scenes look at how the party went down...

Dave Hall, Don Hall, Jr. and Don Hall, Sr. said a few words about the momentous occasion. A few tears were shed. We're not saying by whom.

A gigantor cake, made by some of our talented fellow Hallmarkers, was rolled out in all its glory. You can't tell from this picture, but the cake stands exactly 100 inches tall and it's wrapped in 100 images from Hallmark's history. Pretty impressive if you ask me. The cake will find a permanent home in the Hallmark Visitors Center shortly so if you're ever in the KC area, come pay it a visit!

I'm not sure whether Theresa's mesmerized by the cake or laughing at one of the skits. My money's on the cake.

Speaking of cake...we each got a real one! Not 100 inches of cakeyness, but still mighty tasty.

Here. Have a virtual taste...

Hey, I think you have some orange frosting on your nose.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

OK By Us

Rest assured that the card you enter for the Birthday Your Way contest will not be judged by our CEO, but only by our contest team. And thank your lucky stars that you didn't work here in the forties, a time when J.C. Hall reviewed all of the cards produced and approved them with a simple, "OK, JC." Talk about pressure. Check out this and other stories from Hallmark's 100-year history on our official centennial site.

Relax. Take a deep breath. And enter that fantastic Birthday Your Way card you've been cooking up by Monday, January 25. We can't wait to give it the OK.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Whatever Inspires You

Have you found just the thing that speaks to you for your Birthday Your Way card? Is it an old photo you've already taken? An artistic style you want to explore? A joke you thought of in the middle of the night? A poodle?

This photo was taken of a Hallmark artist and her subject in the 1960s. Sometimes the real thing is the only thing that will do. I'm guessing the poodle was paid handsomely in treats.

These days we've got our own sources of inspiration, one of them being Pita. She's always game for a photo shoot, a lap sit or a dead-pan look.

Find inspiration where you may and enter your Birthday Your Way card between today and Monday, January 25. Not sure where to start? Check out a whole century of cards and card making on Hallmark's centennial website.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Are You Getting To Work Yet?

So, have you been working hard on that Birthday Your Way card? Hmm? Time to get out those brushes, pens, paints or computers and get to it. You can submit your card starting Monday, January 11 through Monday, January 25.

Long before Hallmark opened up its doors to card contests and fabulous cards from you, they recruited an in-house creative community of artists, writers and other creative folks. This photo is from one of Hallmark's art studios in the 1930s. Would you just look at that concentration! Have a look at more behind-the-scenes photos and snippets from Hallmark's first 100 years.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

We Could Use a Picnic.

I'm not sure when Hallmark's all-employee picnic was discontinued but I vote to bring it back! Nothing would do my creative juices more good than a blanket on the grass and a divided plate filled with fried chicken, tater salad and baked beans. Maybe that's my spring fever talking, but can you blame me? All the snow in Kansas City has me longing for picnic weather.

I have no picnicky treats to offer you, but I do have a feast for your eyes as you create a card for the Birthday Your Way contest: Hallmark's centennial website, a visual banquet of cards, photos and video from our first one hundred years.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Way Back When

It was around one hundred years ago when this shot was taken at Hallmark's very first retail store here in Kansas City in the first floor of the Corn Belt Bank Building. The store offered cards, stationery and gifts. I don't know about yours, but this early location looks nothing like our Hallmark Gold Crown store today. One hundred years can do a lot to change a place!

If you're looking for inspiration as you create an original card for the Birthday Your Way contest, look no further than Hallmark's centennial website. It's got a cool timeline of our first 100 years, behind-the-scenes videos, etc.