Tuesday 23rd January 2018
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Holding the cards


Several lifetimes ago, I found myself following a rock star around Europe for a feature in Spin. She was on tour with her band and retinue, and one night, in the very tiniest hours, we all found ourselves at the Oslo airport, waiting for a ground crew to show up and load the band’s equipment on to the rock star’s rent-a-jet. Every concession in the airport was closed, and—with precisely zero in the way of gift shops or newsstands to look to for amusement—I found myself staring down one of those cheap business card machines that print while you wait. I didn’t really need business cards—Spin had taken care of that because I was on their masthead as an editor at large—but this seemed like it could be the source of at least twenty solid minutes of fun. The machine allowed users to select from a variety of backgrounds, and I decided on a soothing blue-green waterfall scene. For the text, I chose simply:


Until fairly recently, that card—so flip and overshare-y and prototypically me circa 1998 that it might as well have been a photograph—was the only one I’d ever actually made for myself. There was always a job, and a nice little paper token of my progress as a professional to go with it. During the year I took off, there was little use for one, but then the blog started going, and I required something to hand out at the odd professional event, or when I found myself occasionally in the kind of meeting where other participants volley theirs at you, and it’s kind of awkward not to have something to volley back. So I got some from moo, and they look fantastic and the paper quality is beyond anything you’d expect for the price. So good, in fact, that putting more than three in my wallet at a time presents drastic overcrowding problems. And because I tossed my old J Crew card case when I got tossed from my old job, it feels like high time to get another. This one appeals, because how could it not?

Screen shot 2013-04-01 at 11.19.18 PM

I like the idea of bright card holders, because they’re just that much easier to detect in your bag. And this rough-hewn version from Il Bisonte has the extra added advantage of being roomy enough to serve as an auxiliary wallet on occasions when you want to shove your cash, ID,  and credit cards into something that will fit into the smallest of  evening bags.

Screen shot 2013-04-02 at 1.00.33 PMPretty much everything from Pierre Hardy costs a fortune,which is too bad, because so much of it—and in particular pieces with the brand’s trademark geometric print—are fantastic. Get yourself something on this scale, however, and you can satisfy you luxury jones without guilt.


If pulling a card out of a gold Alexander McQueen skull case does not say I mean business, then I don’t know what does.

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For the dire minimalist: Architect/designer Alice Park’s   folded card holders, which come in a variety of happy and quite stylish colors.

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Posted on April 2nd, 2013 10 Comments

10 Responses

  1. cs says:

    Oh I love these! Especially as a new-ish business owner. The ‘IN IT TO WIN IT’ and McQueen are calling to me.

  2. Violet says:

    The Alexander McQueen case is. so. great.

    Hmmmm, this has me thinking. I expect to (finally) graduate from college next May at age 49. Maybe I should start a gift registry…


  3. Kim | howtolovethisworld.com says:


  4. Donna says:

    I agree with the others – the McQueen one is fantastic. I also like the bright orange and pink ones. I’ve never had a separate business card holder, but I really LOVE that McQueen one. Hmmmm…

  5. shirim says:

    I have no favorite other than I love the whole damn post. I keep my all banged up and collected by a paper clip.

  6. Lisa J says:

    I want the McQueen. It rocks!!

  7. edie says:

    Why am I feeling like if I were to get one of these, I’d promptly lose my job?! I am wondering what the little exterior pocket is for on the Il Bisonte case. A key?? No one has just one key!

  8. c.w. says:

    I keep my moo cards in a vintage cigarette case that has cowboy boots on the front (I get more comments about the case than I do my cards). If I didn’t use that I’d probably go all McQueen as well.

  9. Vicki says:

    Thank you for posting the link to moo. I’ve wanted business cards for personal use for a long time. moo has great designs, and I finally took the plunge! c.w.’s idea of using a vintage cigarette case as a business card holder is brilliant; I need to see if I still have one my grandmother gave me with NYC on the cover.