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The power of the written word: Large-scale greeting cards form an emotional time capsule as Covid restrictions ease across the UK

As Covid restrictions lift in England and are further eased across Scotland and Wales, Hallmark and leading paper manufacturer Fedrigoni UK unveil a series of large-scale greetings card installations that capture the diversity of emotions at this significant moment in the pandemic. Embracing the quintessentially British act of exchanging greetings cards on any occasion, the installations encourage passersby to write a heartfelt message inside, whether they be addressed to a missed loved one, a lost relative, or the nation itself. Designed by the Hallmark Creative Studio and printed on recycled Fedrigoni paper, the cards will form an emotional time capsule as the nation experiences another monumental shift in the pandemic, and create a moment of shared optimism for the future ahead.

 

Simon Pilkington, Managing Director at Fedrigoni UK, commented: “As the easing of Covid restrictions lay on the horizon, we anticipated it would provoke a broad range of emotions - from excitement and relief, to anxiety and reflection. Sending greeting cards is a distinctly British act, so with the support of the Greeting Card Association, we saw an opportunity to create a historic record of the nation’s diversity of feelings at this momentous time.”

 

To bring this concept to life, Fedrigoni UK collaborated with Hallmark to design four large-scale greeting card installations that capture the nation’s response during the further easing of Covid restrictions. In partnership with Cardzone, the installations are situated in areas with a high footfall, positioned to encourage passersby to write a personal message in the card. Determined to encourage national solidarity, the installations are spread throughout the UK, located in London, Cardiff, Glasgow and the Manchester Area. Fedrigoni UK challenged the Hallmark Creative Studio to design a B1 sized card made from Fedrigoni Stucco Old Mill 100% Recycled paper, chosen for its crisp print results and natural look and feel. Each card and supportive plinth was manufactured by marketing services group Linney and written by Donna MacGregor: 

 
●    ‘& We Keep Moving Forward’ - A message of shared perseverance and enduring optimism. Located in Icon Outlet at The O2, Greenwich, London and designed by Janice Leung, whose work is inspired by growing up in a diverse and multicultural environment. 
●    ‘Hugs! So Worth the Wait’ - Positioning hugs as a symbol of hope and community as we look towards the future. Located in Cardiff City Centre and designed by Emma Burton, an emerging Leeds-based designer who works in a fun and colourful style. 
●    ‘The Good, the Bad and the Lockdowns’ - An invitation to celebrate the world opening up post-pandemic. Located in Glasgow Fort and designed by Adam Pryce, an established Yorkshire-based artist known for his children’s books, animations and public art. 
●    ‘Here’s to Unprecedented Good Times Ahead’ - Positive vibes only on the road ahead. Located in Cheshire Oaks and designed by Emma Long, an up-and-coming designer based near Leeds who creates playful, relatable artworks. 


Rachel Goodman, Creative Director at Hallmark UK/ROI, commented:  “We believe that when you care enough you can change the world, and during the past 18 months it’s been clear the emotional significance of the written word has been pivotal in helping people to connect, reach out and show someone that they care. We saw this campaign as a true ‘Hallmark Moment’, a wonderful opportunity to capture the diverse responses to the end of lockdown, and to provide a canvas on which the nation could express their most heartfelt messages. These card installations have been a collective effort between Hallmark UK/ROI, Fedrigoni, Cardzone, the Greeting Card Association and Linney, and we hope the spirit of this collaboration is mirrored in the nation’s interactions with the cards. This has been an unquestionably difficult time, so we would love for these installations to spark a little joy and togetherness as we look towards a more unified future.”

 

Amanda Fergusson, CEO at the Greeting Card Association, commented: “Greeting cards are a powerful way of building relationships, sharing sentiment and forging meaningful connections. Now more than ever we all need a moment of togetherness, which Hallmark, Fedrigoni and Cardzone have created by encouraging connections through this innovative and creative installation.”



The cards are now installed in the above locations and will be open for public engagement until the end of July. Once taken down, a selection will be donated to The Postal Museum in London to join the museum’s collection, as part of the COVID-19 and The Post collecting project. Through public submissions, the project aims to document and reflect the important role the post has played, and continues to play, in keeping people connected through extraordinary times.
 

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