From the Birdcage to the Dragons' Den to a Store Near You: Hallmark Launches the Hand & Beak Greeting Card Collection
Featured on CBC-TV’s Dragons’ Den
September 27, 2012 – Today, Hallmark Canada is launching an original greeting card line created by a BC woman and her pet bird, Luigi. Mary McQueen is the founder of Hand & Beak greeting cards – a unique line of cards featuring collages of various designs made from shredded paper. Luigi is not only McQueen’s beloved pet, but also her business partner – he shreds paper that she then uses to create the designs. After a successful pitch on CBC’s hit television show Dragons’ Den, Hand & Beak greeting cards are now available at all Hallmark Gold Crown locations across Canada.
“After hearing Mary’s unique story and seeing the detail and craftsmanship behind these beautiful cards, we immediately were on board,” said Chris Kelly, Vice President Consumer Solutions & Brand Experience, Hallmark Canada. “We are always looking for new and innovative ways for our customers to connect and we are excited to share Mary’s story and her cards with our customers.”
To create the cards, Luigi uses his beak like a sewing machine needle to shred paper into precision strips. McQueen then crafts whimsical collages from his shredding and creates greeting cards from the original artwork. The collection at Hallmark features six birthday card designs, each priced at $3.99.
Mary McQueen recently appeared on the seventh season of CBC’s Dragons’ Den to pitch her company, Hand & Beak. She sought a $10,000 investment in exchange for 24 per cent of her company. Mary’s story, wit and product won over David Chilton, former stockbroker, author of the best-selling personal finance book The Wealthy Barber, and the newest dragon in the den.
“As Mary and Luigi took the stage, I was immediately intrigued,” said Chilton. “I think Mary is smart, witty and has a unique product. Entrepreneurs get a boost in attention and interest after appearing on our show – the producers call it the ‘Dragons’ Den effect’ – and I’m excited to see where we can take this together and the positive impact it will have on Hand & Beak.”
As a proud sponsor, Hallmark will donate all proceeds from the sale of Hand & Beak greeting cards to Make-A-Wish Canada®, the organization that helps grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.
“This whole experience has been beyond thrilling,” said McQueen. “I never dreamed I’d actually get a deal on the show, and now for my greeting cards to be carried in Hallmark – it’s a surreal, but incredible feeling.”
McQueen and Luigi appeared on the September 26th edition of Dragon’s Den. To view the show, visit www.cbc.ca/dragonsden.
For more information on Hand &Beak and to see Luigi in action, visit www.handandbeak.com.
About Hallmark Canada
Hallmark Cards, Inc. is the world's largest manufacturer of greeting cards and other personal expression products. Hallmark was founded by Joyce C. Hall in 1910 and currently employs more than 740 artists, designers, stylists, photographers, writers and editors, who develop nearly 20,000 products each year. Hallmark Canada is the industry leader whose products are sold through its 195 Gold Crown stores as well as select grocery stores, drug stores, mass-merchandisers and discount stores. For more information, visit www.hallmark.ca.