Stationers' Company

It's all in a Thank You

Following on from my post last week about joining the Stationers' Company and all the recent excitement of the Stationery Awards, it got me thinking about acceptances and thank yous... 

We often read that in this digital age, handwriting is a dying art, so we need to ensure that the next generation are encouraged to communicate in the written form by having exciting and innovative products to use - and from what I have seen at the shows there is plenty around this year which bodes well for sales.

Hannah Dale founder of Wrendale Designs commissioned a YouGov survey into thank you letter trends at Christmas which revealed that 25% of parents admitted that their children sent no form of 'Thank You' message for gifts received - either handwritten or electronic - although 68% of them thought they should. Hannah feels there is nothing nicer than receiving a handwritten letter which says thank you for a gift received and hopes that her new range of stationery 'Snails and Pigtails' designed specifically to appeal to children, will encourage them to write. Hannah entered her writing set in to The Gift of the Year awards back in January and it won its class so the retail buyers who judged the awards certainly feel she is on to something. 

Not sending 'Thank You' letters might be a trend amongst children but someone is definitely sending thank you cards as this format has seen a steady growth in sales recently, particularly in a smaller size card for a quick note. Card publishers are getting in on the act here too with one of Lagoms best-selling cards being an eye catching 'Thank You' card saying ‘SMALL CARD BIG THANK YOU’.

Portico Designs have been producing licensed and OEM ranges of stationery for retailers like Staples, WH Smith and many others in the stationery and fashion sectors for 25 years, but have only started to sell in to the market in the last 2 years or so. The ranges available to independent retailers are very strong I particularly liked their range of boxed notecards called note to self which offers a real cross section of designs; some very simple stylish cards with fine embossed icons, others with contemporary metallic shapes, some laser cuts and others relaxed coloured spots and florals.

All of which inspire me - and hopefully inspire others, particularly the younger generations - to get writing.



The Worshipful Company of Stationers and Newspaper Makers

9th May 2016: Joining the Worshipful Company of Stationers & Newspaper Makers

9th May 2016: Joining the Worshipful Company of Stationers & Newspaper Makers

I don't normally blog about myself, but this time last week I was invited to Stationers' Hall in London for a very special occasion that I'd like to tell you about...

I have worked in the stationery industry since 1989 when I joined WH Smith as the manager of their own brand product development department. Working closely with the manufacturers and suppliers specifiying and developing new products, I found I had a passion for stationery - particularly pens and paper - which has never left me.  So to be asked to join the Worshipful Company of Stationers & Newspaper Makers (usually known as the Stationers' Company) was an amazing honour which will allow me to get involved with the industry in a very different way...

Livery companies may be considered old fashioned these days, but they still have a real relevance in our modern world. They often have significant funds and use them to support charitable and educational work - and the Stationers' Company is a good example of this, supporting both businesses and individuals.

The Stationers' Company seeks to be recognised as the most effective independent forum in the UK Content and Communications industries, actively contributing to their strategic development and profitability.

You'll remember from my last blog that education and encouraging children to write and draw is a real passion of mine, and education is also one of the Stationers' Company's main focuses. Today, this includes digital media as well as the printed and written word. Their work includes programmes like Stationers' Crown Wood Academy, the 1st school in the UK which specialises in digital media, and also running Saturday schools for children where English is a second language.

Another recent initiative, launched in 2015, is the 'Stationers' Company Warrants', a way of recognising excellence in Communication and Content products of all types. I was involved in evaluating the entries in 2015 and am delighted to have been asked to do the same in 2016.

For me, being able to work with others who are passionate about stationery, our industry, and its future, is real privilege and I look forward to continuing this work as part of the Stationers' Company...