How do you organize greeting cards?

I have everyone's birthdays/important days in my planner...but even when I do fine the perfect card ahead of time--I misplace it and then find it after the occasion.

Does anyone have a good way to organize the cards/buying process and where/how to store them so they are available when you need to send them??
thanks!
busylilnurse

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I use a basket with month dividers

I usually go to the card store just a couple of times a year with a list of cards to purchase. I have a Longaberger greeting card basket with monthly dividers. The dividers have lines on the front by day of the month to list birthdays, anniversarys, etc. I place the appropriate cards behind the month divider and keep the current month (with cards) in the front. When that month is over the divider goes to the back of the basket.

I keep "miscellaneous" cards in the very back of the basket (congratulations, get well, general birthday & anniversary, etc.). If I find several "perfect" cards for a person I just buy them and then I'm already set for the next year too.

basket question

Thanks for the great basket idea, i love baskets. I can't afford a Longaberger, altho they are so pretty and wellmade. I usually go to Salvation Army or Goodwill and get some really nice baskets there. Do you have a picture of your basket you can post so I know what to look for?

Are the dividers purely by month and then each divider has lines on the front where you can list individual names and occasions?

thanks!
busylilnurse

"Meddle not in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and good with ketchup"

pics for you :-)

I'm at work so can't get you a pic of MY basket - but here's info for a current eBay auction with dimensions, etc:
Longaberger Basket 2001 Card Keeper - eBay (item 320270090513 end time Jul-09-08 17:22:51 PDT).

The dividers are as you said...purely by month with lines on each monthly divider to list the specifics.

Greeting Cards...

I just have a box (I think it is supposed to be a storage box for CD's?) that I put all of my cards in. Could you make some type of symbol next to the birthday in your planner which would tell you that you already have a card? Then if you have a place to put your cards, you could just go to that "box" when it is time to mail and find the card you purchased...

Just one quick thought!
nay nay

thanks naynay

I like the symbol idea...that would cue me to look in the basket (the one I'm planning...doesn't exist yet but I"m working on it!)

busylilnurse

"Meddle not in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and good with ketchup"

The big rack at the greeting card store...

because, I rarely buy them ahead of time.
-----------------------------------
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Hallmark!

I keep a list, by month, of special days in my planner. But I actually organize the cards in a greeting card organizer box I got as a free premium from Hallmark a couple of years ago. It has monthly dividers and dividers by occasion.

I buy cards 2-3 times per year when I have enough Hallmark rebates accumulated (it pays to sign up with them!). I put the new stash behind the appropriate occasion tabs.

As part of my monthly review, I look through my card organizer and pick out all the cards I'll need for that month's birthdays/anniversaries. I make them out all at once for the month, then make a note when to mail each in my planner.

Card Mailing Date

I write the date to mail my cards in the upper right corner where the stamp will cover it. I leave the stack on my desk and work and check it everyday to see if any need to go out. This works for me as I have work mail that I prepare sometimes months in advance, so I do the same with that (except I use pencil on those so I can erase before using the postage meter).

biscuit tin

My card organiser is just an old rectangular biscuit tin (or cookie tin as you'd call it in the US).

I like to give quirky art cards and silly cards with fun pictures as I like to write the messages myself. So I buy the cards whenever I see them.

The cards get dropped into the tin and live there until I give them to the person I bought them for or I find someone perfect for the card. ;)

I also keep three or four cards at work in case a birthday or celebration sneaks up on me.

I have a concertina file

I have a concertina file with 12 sections labeled with the months of the year. When i buy a card for someone i put it into the section for the month of their birthday. Currently i rely on remembering i have already bought the card hence i frequently end up with 2 cards for people! So i love the idea of placing a symbol or suchlike by their birthday in my diary so i know i've already bought it. would also work fab with presents already bought i have a box full of gifts which i forgot i've bought or who i've bought them for!

organizing greeting cards

I use a small accordian file and categorize my greeting cards by topic (birthday, sympathy, get well, etc.).

I stock up on greeting cards a couple times a year when I visit the Paper Plus outlet store in Vacaville, CA. It's the outlet for Papyrus shops. Depending on the sale, the cards are either 4 for $1 or $1 each. Either way, it's a bargain compared to what they cost in the regular stores.

card organizer

Current catalog has a card keeper box that comes with dividers. You can also order the refill packages of the dividers without having to order the box itself. You can order it online or by calling them. I love mine and keep it well stocked with all sorts of cards and thank you notes that I find on sale. I also ordered the refill dividers and used them to make a place for bills, receipts and stamps in a box I had lying around the house.

Maybe you can tell how

Maybe you can tell how disorganized I am becuase I don't buy anything ahead of time, I've wanted to, but somedays all I can do is

1. not forget to pick someone up and/or
2. one square hot meal on the table

that said, I'm not a basket person (texture), but I like those silky feeling zipped bottom containers cheap from ikea. keep pre purchased cards by category - buy ones you love, and keep a supply on hand maybe, and love the symbol or sticker on your planner, maybe one week ahead of time? see, I can plan conceptually, but not pull it off LOL.

I've been running manila folders through my printer lately, cutting the flap off to make it fit, or use heavy cardstock doing the same, you could make indexes then, or use those

scrappacks at JoAnns to make decorative cateogries, I used those to make recipie dividers, color coding each divider by food group - salad was on greenish paper, breads on brown, etc.

the biggest thing I'd suggest is to understand which you'd buy ahead of time, probably happy ones like birthday etc...

had to buy a sympathy card this weekend, and I couldn't have planned it --- they are so personal, this was an unexpected death, so I just found a good one at the grocery store.

just as important is having addys and stamps available also I think.

Greeting card organization

I had an inexpensive little 2-drawer file cabinet from a discount store that was really wasn't useful for much as the drawers didn't pull out very far & it was pretty flimsy. So I put it in a small closet where I keep rolls of gift wrap, gift bags, bows & ribbons, tissue paper, etc. In the bottom drawer I file smaller gift bags, tape, scissors, etc. In the other drawer I got file folders & made labels on the computer with each category such as BIRTHDAY, GET WELL, THANK YOU, SYMPATHY, GRADUATION, etc. I put a graphic on each one so I could easily tell what each folder was for. In the BIRTHDAY & ANNIVERSARY folders, I keep a printed list of names & dates. As I find cards I like, I buy them and put them away. Sometimes I find a box of cards with an assortment. During holidays like Halloween, I buy packets of multiples as they are usually cheaper. After the holiday, you can sometimes pick them up 1/2 price. I always load up at the dollar stores where cards are .50 cents. I have been at this for a number of years, so I have quite a nice collection built up. If I buy a special card for a particular person, I try to do it ahead and file it away. I used to always buy cards and lose them.

You could also buy a file box with a handle. I've even seen boxes designed for this purpose. I used to place the different categories in gallon baggies & kept them in a hatbox. You could also buy a 3" ring binder & plastic pockets & file them that way. Google "card organizers."

Cont.

I also keep return address labels that I receive from donating to various charities, stickers, stamps, and a list of birthdays, anniversaries, and addresses in my file cabinet.

I have tried many systems for storing greeting cards.

The poly accordion file with plastic dividers : if the file gets too full, the plastic dividers stick out and get distorted making the product unmanageable.

Open boxes or baskets: One clumsy move and the whole thing falls scattering cards all over which can become cats or toddlers toys in a New York minute.

Various hats or fancy shoe boxes found at discount stores: Same problem with the unsecured lid as the open boxes and baskets above. Being made of cardboard, storage in a garage/basement/attic is out of the question.

Solution:

A 6.87Hx22.87Wx16.75D (inches) plastic box with a secure lid.

I usually buy blank cards at a discount so they are stored in their original packaging.

Since you need monthly dividers, it can be as cheap as d.i.ying them out of cereal boxes (Ygor made a document that you can print out for the template) or buying them at office stores sales or discount stores such as Target but the best prices I found were at overstock stores such as Ross, Marshalls, Big Lots and Dollar stores.
You can find discounted baskets there as well.

Many small non-profit have resale/thrift stores where you might find a very expensive basket for a couple of dollars.
(donations of goods to these stores earn tax deductions)
People who are moving, redecorating or decluttering sometimes donate brand new or nearly new items.

I use a box

I bought a nice big one from Current (the stationery place) with dividers. Hallmark also has them from time to time.