{Business Tips} Functional Business Cards

I tend to be a bit anti-business card. I have boxes of old business cards from my previous jobs and former businesses I’ve owned. A few years ago I vowed I would never, ever  use business cards again.  So in December 2011, as I was preparing for the 3rd Ward Handmade Holiday Craft Fair, I wanted to come  up with a creative way to promote my Etsy Shop, it had to be something people would not toss in the garbage once they got home – this thought was my driving motivator.

I could have designed and purchased some nice looking business cards using VistaPrint on the cheap, but a traditional business card wasn’t going to cut it. After some serious pondering, I came up with a few ideas.

HerbanLuxe Mirror business card

HerbanLuxe Mirror business card

The first idea was a handmade mirror. I searched the net for some inspiration but I really didn’t find what I was looking for.  Then it hit me, I have a die-cutter, I could come up with my own design. I purchased some inexpensive 2 inch mirrors, used my Baroque die to cut some recycled chipboard. I then covered the chipboard with some fancy Antique paper and voila – I was able to come up with my own low-cost, handmade mirror business cards.

Total cost per card was $0.37.  My biggest expense were the mirrors, I was able to get my hands on a lot of 100 for $25.  I used my hot-foil stamper to add my shop name to the front and my name and url to the back of the card.  I was pretty happy with the final results.  Now this is a card that is least likely to end up in the “ga-ba-ge”, no one is going to toss a mirror.

The next idea was courtesy of my 12 year-old, Bela, who is also an Etsy shop owner. She suggested I put my shop info on a pin-back button.  The best part of this idea was that she  made them for me. I just had to create and print the design. Bela made 100 buttons using our button maker machine in under an hour, I was thoroughly impressed and pleased with the end results.

These babies went like hot-cakes at the event. People were grabbing them and sending their friends to my booth.  The end result? More people stopping by my booth and more sales.

HerbanLuxe pinback button

HerbanLuxe pinback button

Since the handmade mirror business cards and the pin-back buttons were such a success. I turned the pin-back buttons into mirror which are a bit less time consuming to make than my original, beautiful, handmade mirror design.

HerbanLuxe mirror-back business card

HerbanLuxe mirror-back business card

I still scour the Internet looking for creative ideas for business cards and recycling old business cards.  Here are a few great ideas:

  1. Michelle of Aisle3.etsy.com offers a great tutorial for creating business card rings on her blog.
  2. PickPunch offers a great tool to create your own Guitar Pick Business Cards using recycled credit cards and rewards cards
  3. Create cool stickers with your shop info and logo.  The stickerguy.com has some great prices and you’ll end up with a professional looking sticker.
  4. Make a magnet clothespin business card. It’s functional and great for your design business.
  5. Create seed pack business cards. Create your own mini envelopes using recycled paper, print or stamp your shop info and add some flower or herb seeds. It’s the card that gives back.

Do you have an idea for an awesomely functional business card? Would love to hear your ideas, post them as a comment. 


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About Myra @ HerbanLuxe

Myra is an Etsian with an MBA. The art of business and technology are her two obsessions. She has been writing EcoEtsy Business Tips since 2010. Myra grew up in Puerto Rico with grandparents who were a head of their time and didn't know it - living what we would call today, "a simple green life." Her love of learning and teaching are the key drivers in almost everything she does.


  1. Great great post !!! Love the 2 ideas !! Thank you !
    Like you, I do not use business cards : for me it’s too much business-oriented !!
    I prefer to do some personal idea ! For example, for my handknits, I use a little bit of yarn (same wool and color than the sold handknit), that I sew on a little card ! It makes a special card and I love the final touch ! It’s also very personal and it gives a nice idea of the wool !
    Or sometimes I use the same yarn to close the package. Or the same yarn to put some gift tags…

  2. Got some great ideas. The seed packet idea is really cool, especially in spring and summer. I like the key chain and the paint strip ideas too.

    I have made a similar thing with card stock- skinny book markers. Here I cut the card stocks in about 6″x2″ long strips, make a design with a hole puncture on one end, on this a nice designed card stock I tie a nice ribbon and have my business details stamped at the white side. This way they are functional as book markers too. Since I make wire knit book markers some times I think people will remember me with this. Dita from http://www.alankarshilpa.etsy.com.

  3. Fabulous and in sync with a new project we’re working on. We are having two branding irons made – one with our quote (take care, be good & kind, and don’t forget to laugh) in a spiral and another with our tree logo & website. We are going to cut slices of small branches (just over a one inch diameter) and brand them to make a small wood coin to give as a special business card/coin. An inexpensive/ biodegradable option with natural, found materials.

  4. Myra@herbanluxe says:

    I forgot to include a great recycled business card idea. If you don’t want to spend the cash you can score some free paint chips (you know the little color cards) add your info and some creative decorating like hole punches and ribbon and you have yourself a conversation starter.

  5. I usually use my business cards as tags for my articles hoping that my customers will like to keep them but love the mirror idea!

    • Myra@herbanluxe says:

      How about adding a key ring to your tags? Make them dual function – it’s a tag – its a key fob

  6. Loved the ideas! This definitely makes me think differently about my own cards. Now, my mind is spinning on ways to get my name out there in a way that won’t end up in the recycle bin….thanks Myra!!

  7. Love these ideas! Of course the handmade always looks best to me, but even the button mirrors are cool.

  8. Oh wow!

  9. I am in love with everything about this post. You are so creative & what a way to think outside the traditional standard to come up with something fun and functional! You’ve inspired me to come up with something different too…maybe a business Zine, a little pocket book that people can read & pop it in their purse or pocket :-) Hmmm…

  10. Thanks for linking to my fabric message rings! Now I’m going to go check out the others…’chelle

  11. Wonderful, creative ideas, Myra! I’m glad to hear that the 3rd Ward show was a success for you. No doubt your innovative marketing boosted sales!

  12. You are so creative! I love the idea of pin/mirror/business card! And I think I will use it. Thankyou for sharing!

  13. Such a great post!
    Your mirror idea is fantastic! Thanks for the inspiration! Will try now to find a creative way to promote my shop!