Happi Names was one of my favorite mall stores to visit as a child. I remember shelves and shelves of different sized pink, purple, turquoise, and blue acrylic boxes just waiting to be personalized by teenagers armed with paint pens and a steady hand.
Having a name that wasn’t easily found on cheap, touristy key chains or notepads or anything at all for that matter, meant having my name emblazoned on anything was extra exciting. Happi names was quick, inexpensive, and the store itself, which I think also sold novelty candy and stickers and other stationery items, was on the top of my “places I’d like to accidentally get locked inside overnight” list. Target and Woolworth’s were also on that list for their novelty stationery products. Probably to the relief of my parents, that scenario never happened.
This project is a bit of a wink to the past, as I used watercolors to paint colorful designs on blank cards from Michaels $1 bins. There’s always something that feels youthful and simple when using watercolors, and I’ve always loved how you can easily control the saturation of the colors. I used a color palette of turquoise, pink, peach, lemony yellow, and a touch of black. The lighter colors dried to look both a little neon (the yellow) and pastel (the pink and peach), which gave them a retro feel.
For my polka dots (as I do love me some polka dots) I used a pencil eraser, which worked perfectly when my hand painted polka dots looked less than stellar. Yes, I went through several cards where the designs I painted just were not working for me. Even though I had a few ideas in my head about what I wanted to do, in retrospect, I would have actually tried those ideas on scrap paper first. If so, I would have probably ended up with more than four cards. But hey, what’s a craft, if not trial(s) and (a lot of ) error(s)?
After my cards dried, I added a clear label with my blog name to the center and they’re ready to be filled with wonderful words and sent the old fashion way by land, sea or air to the recipient. Yet another nod to the past!
Cute, quick, inexpensive, and they’re personalized with not just my blog name, but with my own designs as well.