Hi, we started Your Year Cards & Gifts from our home in Hertfordshire. The idea started as a way to market a collection of 20th Century British coins, as we realised that the coins would carry “added value” if they were to form part of a birthday card.
In 2013 we made my first coin card – a 1923 birthday card for our (now sadly passed) Mother’s 90th birthday! We sold a similar design card on eBay and sales grew slowly but steadily, we changed card designs to make them more easy to produce and “assemble” the card and coin. Additional birthday years were added, a few each month, and it took until April 2018 to complete the range of birthday years all the way through from 1915 until 1998. As we decided that anything less than 20 years would not be considered nostalgic, 2019 saw the arrival of the 1999 card and so forth.
We also sold the cards as a version that did not include a coin. Whilst still holding all the “Your Year” information, just without the time and materials for the added coin, these could sell for less and were much easier to dispatch following order.
After printing our first cards on a home inkjet printer, we researched and tried a few external printers, before settling on one that we still use. Their print quality is excellent and their processes conform to the latest quality management and environmental and sustainability standards including certification by the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®), an international organisation dedicated to promoting responsible management of the world’s forests, at the printer’s sites to demonstrate commitment to the environment. This means that the paper used for greeting cards is FSC approved!
We decided to include as much information as we could on the card about Your Year. This has involved doing a considerable amount of research, including the selection of appropriate items of information that would appeal to a broad mainly British audience and be suitable for a birthday card – i.e. it should be up-beat! Whilst there are the of course online “encyclopaedia” resources, we had to corroborate different sources to obtain the final version of information to include in Your Year cards.
The collection was expanded with anniversary cards quite early on and focused on the later years for these. Although cards for golden anniversaries always sell well, we still (as at September 2019) have occasional sales of 2015 birthday cards for 104 year olds – may they celebrate many more birthdays in good health!
In August 2016 we started selling cards on Amazon UK and added a “Framed Gift set” to provide a version of the birthday and anniversary cards that would be a permanent display feature. Future products planned for the range include further frame based products, mugs, placemats and coasters.
Apart from our British customers, cards and frames have been sold to the USA, Canada, Australia, India, Israel, France, Germany and Spain. We get enormous pleasure from the feedback received, including photos, for our cards and we hope to continue to make people happy when they receive a Your Year card on their special day.