Mother’s Day Letters to Mom: Part II

With only three weeks until Mother’s Day, we’re so happy to bring you our second installment of Letters to Mom! We asked 11 awesome moms to share a letter to their own mother or a mother-figure in their life, celebrating what makes their family unique and what lessons they hope to pass on to their own children.


Follow us on Instagram for even more Mother’s Day fun!




“I pray that Oliver and Maribelle will remember these moments spent in our little home. That they’ll remember the times we stopped to see their Lego car or to read a new library book, all curled up in this bed, putting their happiness before social media. That they’ll remember the way we apologized and hugged it out when times got tough or feelings were muddled. The times around our tiny dinette when we sang together and laughed through shared meals. That they’ll think back fondly of when we spent time parked in their grandmama’s yard, learning to ride bikes, or at memom’s drinking tea and exploring their property. Simple bits of our days that add up to something bigger — the threads holding together our family values. This wooden box is a place to house those reminders of what we hold dear, adding to it through life’s adventures.” Demi-Brooke, of @demibrooke




“With Mother’s Day around the corner, I wanted to take a moment to thank the two women in my life who have been a model of some of the greatest qualities I hope to emulate as a mother & pass on to my babies. I’ll never find the words to do these women justice, but the mother I am today is greatly influenced by both of them.


Dear Mom,
Your sense of independence & intuition have forever served as an example of what a woman is capable of. When the days are long with my husband away at work, I channel your strength. I think, ‘What would my mom do?’ & I feel empowered. I don’t know how you managed to do everything you have done in your life while raising three children, for many years on your own, but I am forever in awe of you. In my spare moments, I tap into your entrepreneurial spirit & thrive in my creative outlets. You have taught me to maintain my own identity & to seize my talents. You take risks, act with bravery & follow your heart; I hope my babies can learn those same traits from me over the years. Thank you for being the strongest woman I know.


Dear Mother-In-Law,
You are the epitome of devotion & nurture. You have taken me in as your own daughter & have taught me many things about motherhood. You encourage me to savor & embrace all the moments of motherhood. When I’m feeling exhausted I hear your voice in my head ‘remember the lasts’ & I am reminded that one day my heart will ache for the time I am living in now, to have one more opportunity to rock my baby to sleep. You are tirelessly at the service those you love, from your hospice patients to your family. You have taught me, through your actions, that nothing in life is more valuable than time spent with loved ones. I aspire to love others with the same depths that you do. Thank you for raising the man I call my husband & for welcoming me into your family with open arms.” —Brittany, of @brittanyviklund




“Mother’s Day is fast approaching (how is it already mid-April?!) and I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the mother figures in my life. So when Cardtorial asked me to write a bit about my mother, I was happy to do it! She has taught me so much by her example of giving, hard work, and unconditional love. All traits I hope I will be able to pass down to my children. I still can’t figure out how she home-schooled five of us and still kept the house running smoothly!”  —Marlys, of @mama_endo





How we’re celebrating Earth Day!

Here in the Cardtorial studio, we have pretty diverse (and strongly held!) opinions on a wide variety of topics. Generally, a day doesn’t go by without a pretty rousing debate on one thing or another (we’ll never forget The Great Sparkling Water Debate of 2017). But, something that we all have in common is our appreciation for the great outdoors and an understanding of the importance of preserving and taking care of our natural resources for the generations to come. From long days on the beach, to weekends hiking in the desert, we’re so appreciative of the time we get to spend disconnecting with technology and reconnecting with the Earth. So to celebrate Earth Day, we each took time to reflect on the moments we’ve spent in the great outdoors and how they’ve enriched our lives.


Sometimes we get so caught up in our cities and on our computers that we forget HOW important and crucial it is to preserve and take care of Mother Earth! I often think that if we all took time to be in and connect with nature, maybe it could help us (as individuals and as a world!) mellow out and connect with each other, too! Our natural world is beautiful and inspiring. We just need to take the time to appreciate it and be in it! My hope for the American consumer is that we are all a little more thoughtful about consumption out of respect for our precious resources. I surf almost every morning before heading into the studio [photo above], and my time in the ocean is so much to me – it offers community, presence, and grounding in nature. It fosters my emotional, physical and spiritual well-being.


KAYLEY, Operations Associate
I took this picture in Malibu Creek State Park; it’s one of my favorite places to hike since it’s never too crowded if you go early enough! Hiking is one of my favorite ways to take time for myself and to de-stress. Spending time in nature is something that has always been important to me and my family, and I feel lucky that I live in a place with such beautiful parks to visit.


KRISTIN, Sales Channel Associate, Account Manager + Photographer
This photo is of me being super excited at the Grand Canyon! My friends and I love to plan an annual trip together, to do something a little more “outdoorsy.” In 2016, we hiked the Grand Canyon and it was truly an experience I’ll never forget. Being there really forces you to consider the sheer power of nature, and how lucky we are to be able to experience it.

I also feel very lucky to live in a place like California – we can visit forests, mountains, deserts, or oceans by driving for just a few hours. We have so much to explore, right here in our own backyard!


MADDY, Customer Service + Marketing Manager
There are few places that make me feel as calm as the beach. Growing up, it was always one of my mom’s favorite places, and her love must have rubbed off on me. Even things that bother some people about beach trips—the sand you can never fully get off of your skin, the hot, mid-summer sun, the perpetually freezing ocean water—bring me such joy. There’s just something about that salty sea-air scent that immediately relaxes me and makes me feel like a little kid again.


LIZ, Designer
My husband, Joey, and I went on a trip to Iceland in October 2016 (where he later proposed on the edge of Glacier Lagoon). In this photo, I’m at Gullfoss (meaning ‘Golden Waterfall’). It is one of the most amazing “views of the forces and beauty of untouched nature” I’d ever seen. The water comes from Iceland’s second largest glacier, the Langjökull, and has a total depth of about 32 meters, which is about 105 feet.


JESS, Studio Assistant
I don’t really get out much these days because of my early school schedule, but getting to see the sunrise everyday as I drive into the parking lot at 6 AM is pretty worth it!

We’re writing Letters to Mom this Mother’s Day!

This year, the Cardtorial team has decided to celebrate Mother’s Day by doing something really special: writing good old fashioned letters to our moms! For such a seemingly simple gesture, we believe that a heartfelt note can bring so much joy to a person’s life. Our mothers have shaped, supported, and loved us. Now, we hope to share just how much that love and support has meant to us through the years.


We are so excited to partner with some of our favorite moms to share their stories, as well! We asked 11 incredible women to share a letter to their own mom or a mother-figure in their life, celebrating what makes their family unique and what lessons they hope to pass on to their own children. We’ll be sharing these letters on our Instagram and here on the blog all month long!

In the month ahead, we hope you’ll join us in taking a moment to slow down, reflect, and ask yourself: what would I like to thank my mom for, and what did she teach me about motherhood? What do I hope to pass on to the generations to come? Let’s make this Mother’s Day especially meaningful, by thanking the woman or women in your life who made you the person you are today.

Keep reading for just a few of the many beautiful letters and photos we’ll be sharing this month. (Get those tissues ready!)


“The bonnet she wore when her head was too tiny for a hat, the booties she wore when tiny socks wouldn’t stay on her little feet. A picture of me pregnant with her in our first spring together, the first peonies dried from the first spring we spent with her earth side. Will she still be able to pull fragrance from them when she opens this box as a woman? To see how much her mother loved her, and loves her still? If you, Mom, taught me anything, it’s yes, she will know instantly. She will also know what you taught me: that a day spent among flowers is a day never wasted, that telling her she looks perfect even when she’s been sobbing is always the right choice, that telling her she is smart before anything will always empower her, and that knowing when to apologize for not being perfect will always let her see how adored she always is, always will be. That I will be her safe space, forever.” —Nina, of @foxrun


“My little women, I pray you’re always brave enough to stand up for what’s right, even if it’s not the popular thing to do. May you love yourself as much as I love you. Embrace what makes you unique, special, and beautiful. Be confident in knowing that they were fearfully and wonderfully made. Be kind to everyone. Know that all that I am, all that I do, is for you. My love for you is unconditional and immeasurable, but somehow I’ll love you more tomorrow. Had I seen one second, a single glimpse, of your beautiful faces as a young girl, I swear I would have spent every day thereafter finding my way to you. Being your mama is all I ever wanted to be.” —Belinda, of @raising.little.women


“One of the most beautiful things about becoming a mother has been the way it has deepened my relationship with my own mom. Through not only the shared experience of raising children, but also our shared loved for my babies (her only grandbabies!), we’ve been able to connect on a deeper level than ever before. It’s been such a privilege to enter into motherhood with her love and support through the emotional roller coaster that is parenting! From the moment I first held my son in my arms, I knew my life was changed forever, but I had no idea about the beautiful side effects his birth would bring. My hope is that with each month and year that passes—and now as we have a new baby girl added into the mix—my relationship with my mom will continue to strengthen and blossom. What a gift it is to have her in my life!” —Natalie, of @natalieborton 

Follow us on Instagram @cardtorial to read Letters to Mom all month long, and be sure to stay tuned for more here on the blog!





Changing the Game: Eight Milestones for Women in Art History!

1st century C.E.: According to Roman mythology written by Pliny the Elder, the first drawing in history was made by a woman named Dibutades, who sketched an image of her love onto a wall. (Though, perhaps take this fun fact with a grain of salt!)

November 15, 1887: Georgia O’Keeffe, later known as the “Mother of American Modernism” is born in the town of Sun Prairie, WI. O’Keeffe is perhaps best known for her close-up floral paintings, which some art historians say were meant to represent the female form.

© Georgia O’Keeffe

July 6, 1907: Frida Kahlo is born in Mexico City, Mexico. A self-taught painter, Kahlo’s work is celebrated for her focus on Mexican and indigenous traditions and culture, as well as her feminist focus on the female existence.

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© Frida Kahlo

1971:Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?” is first published. With this essay, Writer and Historian Linda Nochlin launches the fields of feminist art history and theory in earnest. 

1979: The Dinner Party, a large-scale installation piece that revolutionized the world of feminist art, is first exhibited. The piece features 39 place settings, each one designed for a different woman (both fictional and real) who made history. Judy Chicago’s seminal work has been on permanent display at the Brooklyn Museum since 2007.

© Judy Chicago

1979: Barbara Kruger begins to use found images in her work, creating her now famous signature-style of feminist collage. Predominately using Futura Bold typeface to plaster ironic, challenging, and clever sayings over black and white photographs, Kruger has become a renowned critic of American culture and misogyny.

© Barbara Kruger

Spring of 1985: Seven women, calling themselves The Guerrilla Girls, form an anonymous feminist activist artistic group in New York City, with the goal of bringing discussions of gender inequality and racism in art to the forefront. Famous early posters pasted throughout NYC by the group include questions like, “Do Women Have To Be Naked To Get Into the Met. Museum?”

Do Women Have To Be Naked To Get Into the Met. Museum? 1989 by Guerrilla Girls
© Guerrilla Girls

1990: Carrie Mae Weems debuts her seminal photographic series, The Kitchen Table. Over the course of a year (1989-1990), Weems photographed herself every single day (along with others in her life) at her same kitchen table, creating a now iconic statement on representation, gender, and relationships.

© Carrie Mae Weems 

Meet the Women Behind the Words!

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Working on our new International Women’s Day collection has been a total learning experience for us! One of the coolest things we learned during this campaign? Just how many amazing women have changed history, and how many are still making history today! Each and every quote that our collaborators chose to hand-letter totally moved, inspired, and enlightened us. So to celebrate Women’s History Month, we wanted to give you a sneak peek behind the scenes, to learn two of the stories behind the quote!

Cardtorial x Lauren Hom

“If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.” —Shirley Chisholm

In 1968, Shirley Chisholm became the first African American woman elected to Congress, representing the great state of New York, an office she held for seven terms. Don’t think that’s the end of Chisholm’s trailblazing career, though! In 1972, she became the first woman to run for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination, as well as the first African American candidate to run for either major party’s nomination. Though she ultimately didn’t clinch the nomination, Chisholm certainly broke some glass ceilings along the way. In 2015, ten years after her death, President Obama awarded Chisholm with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Talk about a feminist icon!

Cardtorial x Marla Moore

“Well-behaved women seldom make history.” —Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

Though this classic quote has truly taken on a life of its own, there’s always been a bit of confusion over the original source! It’s been (incorrectly) attributed to everyone from Eleanor Roosevelt to Marilyn Monroe. Yet, it was historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich who first wrote this back in 1976. Since then, the quote has gone on to inspire countless women to make a little history of their own! Ulrich has also written a book of the same name, exploring the the many ways in which (unruly) women have changed the world.

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Chisholm (left) // Thatcher Ulrich (right)




The International Women’s Day Collection is here!


We have been on the edge of our seats, anxiously awaiting today! Why? Because today is the day we get to show you our brand new International Women’s Day collection! And now it’s HERE!

We’ve spent the past two months collaborating with 11 amazing female artists, calligraphers, and hand letterers to create 10 unique, limited edition journals and cards featuring quotes by, inspired by, or about powerful women. There have been some serious Girl Power vibes in the office lately (even more so than we usually feel just working on this team of all women!). 

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What excites us most about this all-together super exciting collaboration is that all 11 of these amazing artists came together with an awesome cause in mind. We are so excited to give 100-percent of the net proceeds from this campaign to Planned Parenthood! Here in the studio, it was a quick, collective decision to donate the profits from this campaign to PPFA, as each of us on the Cardtorial team cares passionately about women’s rights.

We’ve had Women’s History Month (AKA March!) and International Women’s Day (coming up on March 8th!) on the brain since the beginning of January, when we first dreamt up this collaboration. Knowing that we wanted to find a way to combine hand lettering, calligraphy, and graphic design, we set out to find women with a wide array of artistic abilities and personal styles. And find them we did! There is truly a design for every style and a quote for every woman in this collection. We cannot wait to hear which one(s) you choose! 

We are so honored to have had the chance to work with so many amazing artists, and for a cause that we care about so deeply. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating International Women’s Day this year by amplifying the voices of these wonderfully talented, creative women and helping to raise funds for Planned Parenthood!

Follow us on Instagram @cardtorial for more Women’s Day fun, and be sure to stay tuned for more info here on the blog!


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Fun Date Ideas for Your Best Valentine’s Day Ever!

There’s a reason we’ve all been on a ‘dinner and a movie’ date—it’s a classic! But sometimes for a special occasion, you want to do something a bit more outside the box than a good meal and the latest blockbuster. This Valentine’s Day, we’ve got you covered! We rounded up a few of our favorite ideas for a fun, memorable date, perfect for new couples, long-term loves, and Galentines alike.

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Pack a picnic and head outside!

The best part about this date is that it’s completely customizable! If you’re lucky enough to live near the beach like we do, head to the sand, sun, and sea. If you not, a local park will be the perfect backdrop for a romantic day in the fresh air! Live somewhere it’s too cold outside? Spread out a blanket on your living room floor and—voilà! All you need is a little imagination and a good sense of humor. Re: food, you can go as involved or as simple as you like! Even grabbing sandwiches from your favorite local cafe is great. After all, it’s the company that really matters! (Though we’re always partial to a super fancy cheese plate, if we’re being honest.)

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Visit the adorable pups and cats at your local animal shelter!

Studies show that cuddling with a cute dog or kitten can increase levels of oxytocin in your system (also known as the “love hormone”!), perfect for building a closer bond with your person. And, who knows? For those in serious relationships, maybe this date will end with the introduction of a third (furry!) member of the family.

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Visit a local bookstore and share your favorite books with one another!

Each of you can pick your favorite classic (think back to that Literature 101 class you took freshman year of college), your favorite book of all time, and one that you think your partner would like. If your shop has a cafe, grab a latte and just chat about these books! Super cheap, but super meaningful—you’ll learn a ton about each other in just a few short hours.

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Spend an evening at an arcade or roller rink!

Nothing brings a couple together like some good old fashioned nostalgia! Strap on some skates or dominate at skee-ball, and feel like a kid again. Love will blossom over a shared cotton candy! Who knows? Maybe you’ll head home with that giant teddy bear you always wanted as a kid.

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Haven’t been struck by Cupid’s arrow as of late? Spend February 13th celebrating one of our favorite holidays: Galentine’s Day!

Invite all of your best gals over and party the way the holiday’s creator (Park’s & Recreation‘s Leslie Knope, of course!) intended—with brunch! Make it potluck-style to keep hosting easy, and then just keep the waffles coming and the mimosas flowing. An awesome time will be had by all!

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