These locally made cards keep the season merry and bright.
1. Asian-inpsired, floral-print paper cut in the shape of ornaments and sewn across Unique Artistry’s invitation’s top flap will kick-start your party in style. When your guests receive the glittering metallic envelope, they’ll feel as good as gold. $15 for set of ten at Paper Doll (2048 W Division St between Damen and Hoyne Aves, 773-227-6950, paperdollchicago.com).
2. Anjenu owner Kristie Wagner’s collection, which she creates in the store’s back room, draws inspiration from the city. The elegant cards feature black-and-white snapshots of Chicago neighborhoods—from the Bucktown El tracks to Pontiac Café’s empty patio—accompanied by a “happy holidays” greeting from the image’s locale. $7 per card, at Anjenu (1747 W Division St between Hermitage Ave and Wood St, 773-469-2212, anjenu.com).
3. After catching the eye of Wagner at the Anjenu’s recent design competition, designer Nancy Aguirre makes her retail-scene debut with Gizmoh & Me. Each tactile card features a fabric cutout, like a pair of red-and-white polka-dot boxers—along with the phrase “I’ve been naughty”—or a fuzzy set of felt mittens connected with twisted wire. $6 per card at Anjenu.
4. Art Institute alum Mollie Green of La Familia Green puts her print-making degree to use creating quirky cards. Our favorites come from a Mexican wrestler saying “Feliz Navidad” and an image of a popcorn tin because as the card says, “nothing says happy holidays like the 3-flavor popcorn tin.” $15 for a set of six at Greer (1657 N Wells between Concord Ln and Eugenie St, 312-337-8000).
5. Much as we love Snow & Graham’s signature cherry-blossom pattern, we couldn’t resist the peaceful image of minty-fresh bluebirds in a pear tree. The Ravenswood-based company also churns out an accordion-style version featuring eight lit menorahs (with an ascending number of candles) for your friends who celebrate Hanukkah. $14.50–$16.50 for set of six at Greer.