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Shih Tzu Card and Labrador Card

Shih Tzu Card

These dog themed cards, a Shih Tzu card and a Labrador card are two brand new birthday designs just added to my shop. I’m going to be working on a range of pet themed cards and these are the first . What do you think?

As with most of my designs, I drew them using Procreate on my iPad. Here’s a little replay video of each one to show you the process. I use layers a lot so when things disappear and reappear that’s me hiding and showing different layers 🙂

This is the Shih Tzu drawing…

And here’s the Lab illustration.

You can see that it often takes me several attempts to get something right 😆. For example I kept adjusted the Labrador’s head as it just didn’t quite look right. I feel like it’s important to show the real process though, rather than an edited one that looks perfect but isn’t real! It’s a good job I’m an illustrator and not a sculptor using marble or some expensive medium as there would be a lot of waste 🤣

I hope you like these card designs. You can buy both the Shih Tzu card and Labrador card in my online shop. They’re available in two sizes – A6 or A5. And keep your eyes open for more designs soon…

Since Brexit, international shipping has become way too complicated for my small online shop, but International customers can buy the same designs in my Etsy shop too.

Don’t forget that if you sign up as a VIP subscriber you’ll get a great discount too!

become a vip now

What other breeds would you like to see in this range? Drop me a message on Instagram or Facebook to give me your suggestions or send me an email – I’d really love to hear from you and I always reply!

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Milestone Birthday Cards

Milestone Birthday Cards Collage

I’ve recently noticed that my milestone birthday cards have become my best sellers by a long way (other than in the lead up to Christmas and Valentine’s Day). It’s funny, as we all have a lot more general birthdays than milestone ones. I’d have thought that that sales for general birthday cards would be higher!

I guess as milestone birthdays are a much bigger deal we make more effort with the cards we choose. We want to show the recipient that we’ve put a bit of thought into it, and chosen it just for them. Even if you’re the sort of person who usually sends any old card (or no card at all 😆), you’re more likely to go out of your way to get something special for a milestone birthday…

With this in mind I thought I’d do a roundup of some of my milestone birthday cards. Many are available for milestone ages from 18 to 90 in my shop. However if the age you want isn’t listed just get in touch and I’m happy to add it. I have less age ranges on Etsy (where you can buy my cards as an international buyer). But if you want me to add a specific age to Etsy then I’d be glad to do that too.

Sportsy milestones

I’ve been selling a LOT of cycling and golf themed cards for specific milestones. These are mostly 50th birthday cards for cyclists and 60th or 70th birthday cards for golfers. Recently, yoga and tennis themed cards are also selling well. Here are some examples.

Boozy milestones

Booze themed cards are always popular and milestones are no exception. Most people have their favourite drink, I guess, and it’s usually connected with celebrations! My best seller of all time is the whisky themed 60th birthday card, Aged to Perfection, but other ages as well as the wine versions also sell very well.

Other milestone birthday cards

And for those who aren’t activity oriented and don’t particularly like to drink? Here are some of the other options I have in my shop.

I’m always looking for ideas for new cards. If there’s a particular type of milestone birthday card you’d like to see in my shop, let me know! You can contact me here on my website, or drop me a message on Instagram or Facebook.

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Tips for remembering birthdays

Being good at remembering birthdays is one of those things that some people are great at and others suck, but most of us are somewhere in between. I’m generally quite good but have had a couple of really serious gaffes where I’ve forgotten a friend’s important milestone birthday and these still haunt me! This post is to help both of us out – I never want to forget again, and I’m sure you’d love some tips on remembering birthdays too.

Make sure you KNOW the important birthdays

This is the obvious first step – if you don’t even know when someone’s birthday is, you’ve got absolutely no chance of remembering 😁

Make sure you have a record somewhere of all your friends and family and their birthdays and fill in the gaps. I went through a stage where I got used to Facebook reminding me about birthdays, so I stopped adding to my own list. This is how one of those gaffes I mentioned happened! I stopped using Facebook as much and missed a good friend’s 50th birthday as a result.

These days it’s probably easiest just to keep a record on your phone – because we pretty much have our phones with us all the time… As soon as someone mentions their birthday just take a few seconds to check whether it’s on your list and if not add it right there and then.

This will help you avoid another ‘learning the hard way’ experience I had (I’m telling you these things so you know I’m not judging you!) I asked someone when their birthday was, it turned out to be in a couple of week’s time, but I didn’t make a note. So although I knew their birthday was coming up but couldn’t remember the exact date and felt too embarrassed to ask again…Luckily we had another mutual friend who could fill me in but how bad would it have been if I’d not sent a card when I’d specifically asked for the date?!

Set reminders for remembering birthdays

It’s all very well having a list of birthdays, but you still need a reminder. Unless you fancy memorising them all, in which case here’s how to do it. For most of us though, reminders are definitely the way to go.

If you use a calendar then the easiest thing is to just add all the birthdays to this together with a notification. You can usually also make them recurring, so that you don’t have to add them in again every year.

This little reminder just popped up while I was writing this post!

For friends and family that I would send a card to or buy a gift for I always add a notification at least a week beforehand as well as on the day. For those I just want to remember to wish happy birthday to a reminder on the day or just before is fine.

If you don’t use a calendar then something like Remember the Milk is great for this. You just make a list of everyone’s birthday and say when/how you’d like to be notified about it. It will then send you an email or notify you on your desktop or the app. You can make these recurring too. It’s also useful for remembering other stuff like dentist appointments, booking MOTs, etc. There are also dedicated birthday reminder services and apps around so hunt around until you find one that suits you.

Non-digital reminders

Would you prefer a more paper based system? Perhaps you’re trying to move away from all the digital clutter that sucks you in. Perhaps you’re not as attached to your phone as most people. Or maybe you just get so many digital notifications and reminders that end up missing some of them….

In this case an actual paper calendar, planner or diary is just as useful. As long as you remember to check it regularly! Write all the birthdays in before the beginning of each year. Perhaps use a highlighter or stickers to make them stand out too.

You could also write all the birthdays on separate mini post-it notes. If you include the name and date then you can just move them across each year.

A lovely perpetual wall calendar from Not on the High Street that would be perfect for birthday reminders (this is an affiliate link)

Otherwise a perpetual calendar like the one above works well, and saves you the hassle of updating each year. You can also get desktop or printable versions, so choose the one that’s most likely to work for you. It only works if you actually see it, use it and pay attention to it regularly!

I read somewhere that in the Netherlands you’ll often see a list of birthdays opposite the toilet. It might seem a bit strange, but at least you know you’ll definitely see the list several times every single day 😆

Become the best at remembering birthdays

It’s worth the small amount of effort it takes to find and set up a system that works for you. Decide whether a digital or paper based system will suit you best and sort it out. Believe me, it’s so much nicer when you’re no longer living in fear of forgetting a birthday. We all like to feel special on our birthday and when someone remembers mine it always gives me the warm fuzzies 🥰

Giving or sending a card to show you’ve remembered someone’s birthday (and cared enough to do something about it) is one of the simplest ways to make someone feel special. So set those reminders now, shop for the perfect birthday card and spread the joy!

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New Sportsy Greeting Card Collection

I’m very excited to announce the launch of my new Sportsy Greeting Card Collection! I’ve been working on these for a while now and really wanted to do a collection centred around activities and sports that was fun and not too serious. I think the name ‘Sportsy’ reflects this too 🙂

I have a lot of friends who are runners or cyclists, my family were always tennis obsessed, and I also do yoga with a lovely bunch of people, so they were my inspiration. I’m sure you also know someone (or several someones) who is a running fanatic or a cycling devotee, a golf maniac or a tennis enthusiast. These cards are for them!
I’ve tried to cover a variety of occasions, so you’ll find birthday cards, anniversary cards, good luck cards and well done / congratulations cards.

You can view the whole Sportsy Greeting Card Collection in my shop at (there are too many to show here!) There are some examples from each sport below though, and you can click on the photos to go straight to that particular card in my shop.

Sportsy Greeting Card Collection sampling

Yoga greeting cards

I love yoga and am part of a lovely class with other people who can also still see the funny side of it all (Happy Baby pose anyone?!) This is an example of one of the two yoga themed birthday cards in the collection.

Cards for runners

I love running and made a lot of good friends when I used to do it regularly. I’ve not run much for a while now due to various injuries and issues with my back, but still have some lovely runner friends that I stay in touch with, and am determined to get back out there again one day! Below are two examples of running themed cards in the collection. There are also good luck and well done cards for when that runner in your life needs some encouragement or applause for an event 🙂
Running medal - congratulations card p
Running shoes - your pace or mine anniversary p

Cycling greeting cards

I also have friends who seem to manage to cycle very impressive distances. My bum seems to get sore after just five minutes on a bike. (And it’s not like I don’t have a lot of built in padding…) So I’m in awe of anyone who can keep going for longer! There are several different cyclist themed cards too, in addition to the example below, including anniversary, good luck and congratulations cards.
Cycling card - wheely great birthday card

Tennis greeting cards

I grew up in a family who are tennis OBSESSED! They love to play it, watch it, discuss it and my Dad even managed a tennis club for a while. Unfortunately I didn’t seem to inherit the same talent as the rest of them… It is one of the few sports I can bring myself to watch on telly though. So I couldn’t not include a few tennis themed cards in the collection… There is a tennis anniversary card in the collection as well as the birthday card below.

Ace tennis birthday card

Cards for golfers

I’ve tried golf a couple of times. But I must admit I’m more interested in the lovely surroundings than in the sport itself. And I’m constantly worried I’m going to take a ball to the head when I’m anywhere near a golf course. It does seem to be one of those activities that people get particularly obsessed with though. So it seemed like the right thing to include a few golfing themed cards in the collection too. There is also an anniversary card version.

Golf card - teerrific birthday card

Fishing cards

Fishing is the one activity in the collection that I must admit I can’t see the appeal of at all… Those poor fish! However I know that there are plenty of people who love it and I’m sure you know one or two. As well as the birthday card below I’ve also included an anniversary card in the collection.

Fishing card - holy carp birthday card

What do you think?

I had a lot of fun creating this greeting card collection. I hope it brings a smile to the face of that sportsy fanatic you know 😀

I’d love to hear from you by email or on social media if you have any feedback or if you have any suggestions for some sports or occasions that you think I should add. And if you love any of the cards above, please pin them to one of your Pinterest boards to share with others!