How Thick Cards made our city stand out

10 Aug

Part of the collateral we had to provide for the 2010 AIGA Leadership Retreat was a guide to the city so that visitors wouldn’t be at a complete loss for something to do when the meetings, seminars, etc. were over. We wanted to create something that would express the quirky, fun spirit of Chattanooga. We knew our city deserved something more exciting than the typical fold-out paper guide. We decided that we would make a pack of cards; much like trading cards. Each card would be designed by a different member of the Engage team, and feature a local “hot spot” in Chattanooga. We proposed this idea to the class and to our printer, Cy Devilbiss of WonderPress, who both loved it and jumped on board immediately. Cy was a fantastic, enthusiastic source of encouragement and truly worked along side us to help us create something unforgettable.

While the class started designing, my team met with Cy to discuss logistics. He used his awesome Thick Cards method to give each of our cards a unique feel. Cy creates his Thick Cards by adhering two pieces of cardstock paper together, creating cards that are twice as thick as normal business cards. By using this method, we could have a different paper for the front and back of each card.

We decided that the back of each card should be the same, and feature the retreat logo when all the cards were placed face down and put together like a puzzle. That way, when the cards were flipped over, face up, each card would feature a different place, different paper, and different designer. Each card also had a number that corresponded to the area map we included in the badge kit.

As we worked on our designs, we worked closely with Cy, as he helped us learn how to design for the paper; keeping in mind how the texture and color of the papers we had chosen would affect the designs we had created. His printing expertise coupled with our design know-how made for an epic conglomeration of awesomeness. Cy was great to work with. His enthusiasm for the project inspired us. He believed in our work so much that he began bragging about it to others and even made mention of entering the piece in some contests. The fact that he took such pride in his own work made us take even more pride in ours, resulting in a great final piece.

We were told again and again by attendees of the conference how visually striking and refreshingly different the guide was. It really made Chattanooga look great, which is exactly what this city deserves. I had the opportunity to hand out the guides on the first day of the conference, and never got tired of people’s surprised and delighted reactions. It was truly impressive, and we couldn’t have made this stellar piece without the help of Cy and his Thick Cards method.


One Response to “How Thick Cards made our city stand out”


  1. Engage: 2010 AIGA Leadership Retreat « beth makes things - August 10, 2010

    […] Among the amazing printed materials he provided for us was the outstanding Guide to Chattanooga. You can read all about that process here. […]

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