Stationery Trends

Summer 2020

Stationery Trends Magazine

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G reeting cards can be enjoyed by most, but there are some populations with limitations that prevent this. Quilling Card co-founder Huong Wolf realized this while on one of her frequent trips to the company's Fair Trade factory in Vietnam. "We currently employ over a dozen deaf artisans, who inspired her vision of using this tactile art form to create braille, forming a special connection from the hand to the heart," described Sara Schofield, senior designer. "Using the sense of touch to engage with every quilled design creates a special shared experience between the deaf artisans who use their skilled hands to craft each card, and the blind recipients who will have the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of quilling beneath their fingertips." But developing this "sweet 16" collection of cards wasn't easy. In all, two years were dedicated to considerable research, extensive testing and a lot of meticulous design work, including collaboration with the renowned Perkins School of the Blind. I interviewed Schofield to learn more about how this innovative range came to life. ST: What special needs do the blind have when it comes to stationery — and how does this range answer them? SS: Other braille greeting cards often have printed imagery with some braille lettering, or use braille dots to create an outline of an image. Of these offerings, the designs are limited and not overly exciting to experience by touch. Because quilling is a tactile art form, it provides a new experience for the blind where they not only read a braille message but can experience an image to accompany it and do not have to sacrifice one or the other. One member of Perkins shared with us how she had received the same birthday card every year, and how she was so looking forward to having a wider selection on the market. ST: How did the collaboration with the Perkins School of the Blind work? SS: This was an invaluable experience. Staff from the Perkins Braille and Talking Book Library were able to provide honest, first hand criticism through each stage of samples while we worked towards perfecting this artistic interpretation of braille. ST: What types of insights did they share about the requirements of braille cards? SS: We learned so much about the braille reading and writing system — a lot of little details that are essential for a successful execution of quilled braille and accompanying designs. For example, of the two different types of braille, grade 1 (uncontracted) was determined to be best for this application. We were Quilling Card's new braille range delivers greetings to a new, underserved audience B Y S A R A H S C H WA R T Z E D I TO R - I N - C H I E F All The Feels Why should the blind be limited in greeting card options? Quilling Card's latest vibrant range delivers not just braille messages, but images that can also be "seen" with the hands. Circle 196. Summer 2020 | S TAT I O N E R Y T R E N D S 40 40

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