A year ago I made a pledge, and it was to sort out something big in the business - the glitter cards. As per most Oh Squirrel products, they originated out of a happy accident, built on the success of the glitter prints I got asked for cards, made some cards... made some more cards... and then made a lot more cards! In the middle of that, they became award nominated cards too, being a finalist for the Henries in 2018.
The cards were always made to order - someone on the website, or a retailer would order them and I'd set to work on getting them made. This was brilliant until two things happened - one, they got a lot more popular and two, glitter started to become a bit of a sustainability issue. Only one retailer spoke to me about this being a possible issue, but for me it only takes one bit of feedback to seriously consider alternative options - this business has grown on the back of happy customers and recommendations, and one thing I learnt in my previous career was to always come to the table with a solution and not a problem.
It took a while to find the right solution for this, and I can promise you, it came along with a lot of hard work, soul searching and big decisions. I did a lot of research and eventually found a printer in the UK, actually not very far from here, who could take them on for me, using specially developed biodegradable glitter. I worked closely with them over a period of a few months before the magic happened...
I initially trialled production in one style, because, I'll be honest here, for a small independent business like mine, it was a big expenditure and risk (let's not think how much 2020 was probably not the year for financial risks...) and I couldn't afford to get it wrong. I learnt a new software package for this, came very close to throwing my computer out of the window whilst doing so, but eventually got there. Just before Christmas, I went in deep and ordered the whole range.
'The whole range' as it were had to be snipped back quite considerably, as it previously was about 60 styles! I plan to add more in the future, in fact, there are some brand new Christmas ones coming very soon...
The reception of the update on these cards has been phenomenal. Retailers who ordered them keep ordering (well, a little think called Covid-19 has slowed it down...), and are happy that I've got that I've made the change to biodegradable glitter. They do look a little different - the glitter is a bit less dense and doesn't have the raised area in quite the same way, but I think they are bloody brilliant! When they catch the sun they just dazzle, so it's a very positive change.
Another great thing about these cards is that they come packed in compostable cello as standard, but retailers can take them with a Kard Klasp instead if they choose. These changes are all really important.
Moving over to the biodegradable glitter did mean that I had to stop offering the custom age cards in the glitter, which was a bit of a shame as these were some of my favourites, however I've increased the badge card offering to balance it out a bit. It has been worth this as a pay off.
The supplier who developed the glitter and the production of these cards advised the following credentials for the glitter used on the cards:
- Biodegradable base film is certified to EN13432 & ASTM D6400
- Rayon, a polymer of glucose, is one of the only polymers currently recognized by the UNPE (United Nations Environmental Programme) as being biodegradable in the marine environment
- Marine & Waste Water biodegradable in accordance with ASTM D6691-09
- Tests prove that the vast majority of the biodegradable content in fresh water biodegraded in 28 days
- Raw materials are sourced in line with FSC standards
- No animal testing involved in development or production
You can shop the range of glitter cards here
. If you're a retailer interested in stocking them, please fill out the new stockist form here