Bussines card unusual sizing

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Javier Garcia's picture
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Joined: 30 Jun 2005 - 11:26am
Bussines card unusual sizing
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Hi Typophiles,
Here is a random question about Business card sizes. I got a hold of a couple BC’s of random sizes. Although I heard it’s best to stick to the common (3.5 x 2 in) just because it fits BC’s cards binders and such, I found some other sizes interesting. I don’t think going longer than 3.5 in is functional but shorter than 2 in looks nice. I found some specs online about sizes and said they could make height shorter than (in metric system) 53mm and showed a 89mm by 45mm card, I like that size but is there really another standard size besides 3.5 x 2 in? What are the pros and cons?

Here are some size examples I found:
• WeWorkForThem ---> 3.75 x 1.75 in (too long and doesn’t fit BC holder)
• Alterpop ---> 3.5 x 1.60 in (maybe a bit too short)
• w.e.a clothing for children ---> 3.5 x 1.5 in (way too short in my opinion)
• Sequence ---> the closest measure to this BC was on my pica ruler 21p3 x 10p6 (about 3.5 x 1.75 in) in my opinion the most comfortable size.

Thanks,
kco

Jesse Phillips's picture
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Joined: 2 Jun 2006 - 2:44pm
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Oh I hate standard card sizes. I love the smaller ones though.

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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Get with the Millimetres!

90mm x 55mm - standard

I still really like the slimmer line cards, but EVERYONE seems to be doing them now so therefore I really like the old school 90x55 I'd love to know where/why/how that size was chosen as standard.

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Paul Ducco
Solid Creative - Corporate Literature Design, Melbourne

Vincent Connare's picture
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Joined: 6 May 2005 - 4:33am
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yup you're right, I love metric over imperial inches/ft!

TypeEvents cards are 50mm x 90mm and our DaltonMaag ones are standard 55mm x 90mm but I think American ones are small like the 50mm x 90mm

Don McCahill's picture
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Joined: 30 Mar 2006 - 7:55pm
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I worked at a shop where a German visitor presented his card. It was a huge thing, about the size of a wedding invitation, and he presented it with two hands. The boss was very impressed, but a few days later realized the card was useless as he couldn't file it. He wrote the information on the back of one of his cards.

Kinda makes the original one worthless.

The only larger cards that can be useful are ones that fold to the regular size, and then the important information all has to be on one side, so it can be inserted in a card sleeve folded so the info shows.

Daniel Weaver's picture
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Joined: 26 Aug 2003 - 4:14pm
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Listen stay with the standards if you are serious about doing business. Are sales your goal or being different. Wallets, Index Cards and other storage devices are made for standard sizes. So when the person you gave your card too has long forgotten you but has a project he would like to give you wouldn't you want them to really find it easily?

Javier Garcia's picture
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Joined: 30 Jun 2005 - 11:26am
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Thanks to all Typophiles for keeping this topic going.

In response to Dan Weaver, this is not something I plan on doing for myself nor for a future project of mine, my purpose is to get some additional feedback as it does happen in the real world. Like I said I got a hold of a couple of these cards and it intrigued me. I also stated that its best to stick to the regular size for functional purposes as you mention. But thanks for the reply.

In response to Paul, I’d also love to know where/why/how that size was chosen as standard?

Thanks again,
caco

Carl Crossgrove's picture
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Joined: 8 Sep 2003 - 2:07pm
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You can also use printing to disguise the standard dimensions; embossed rules along the top and bottom, thick bars of color on sides, breaking up the width horizontally, etc. etc. If the layout and design of a card is compelling *and* it fits standard holders, all the better. Then there are all those other things you can use to differentiate: mylar, plastic, vellum, letterpress, crazy inks, rounded corners, die cuts, laser cuts, heavier card, duplex card, metal foils.....

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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Adding to this ... my collection of business cards is getting to over 300. I always thought it would be nice to make a resource site, that showed picture after picture of business cards from around the world. My name is Paul Ducco, and I collect business cards.

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Paul Ducco
Solid Creative

Thierry Blancpain's picture
Joined: 15 May 2005 - 4:30am
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in switzerland, 85x54mm is a standard size often used for business-cards.

Joe Pemberton's picture
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Joined: 8 Apr 2002 - 3:36pm
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3.5 x 1.75 has become my own personal standard. =)

Patricia Fabricant's picture
Joined: 23 Mar 2004 - 9:40am
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Most wallets are designed to hold standard sizes. Anything too funky risks getting discarded or lost. I'd work on making the design stand out and not the size/shape.

Dylan Menges's picture
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Joined: 11 Aug 2002 - 11:00am
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I'm toying with the idea of building a square card at 2x2 inches. Something extremely simple, with my one color logo embossed on one side, and my name, email, and phone number on the other. No title, no mailing address. The type would be my own handwriting.

Am I nuts?

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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I have a metal business card holder that fits the 3.5x2 size card. Anything larger and it has to be pretty special for me to hang on to it. Otherwise, if I need to keep the information, I'll just add it to my address book and toss the card.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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It is like a 14pt glyph in metal type on a 10pt line--it is different alright but rather a pain to deal with--and soon to be thrown in the broken type bin.

I made a 2" x 2" card once, it just gets lost. It was cute while it lasted though :-)

ChrisL

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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> it has to be pretty special for me to hang on to it.

Oh it will be: 2-7/8 by 1-9/16 (to accomodate the content - and content is never standard), letterpress in Roupen (used for the logo) and Patria, on thick burgundy paper, using a pretty special homemade ink... Available by the end of August.

hhp

Jesse Phillips's picture
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Joined: 2 Jun 2006 - 2:44pm
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oh I want one!

Ken Bessie's picture
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Joined: 21 Jul 2006 - 10:15am
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inches??? millimetres??? I'm still workin' in points & picas.

Tim Daly's picture
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Joined: 11 Sep 2003 - 9:04am
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Please tell us more about the ink Hrant.
Tim

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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I'm reducing wine (over the stove) and adding it to a white opaque base. It seems to go from a mauve to a taupe over time. So I guess the card will be 4-dimensional. :-)

hhp

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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"I’m reducing wine"

So it will be a vintage card then? :-)

ChrisL

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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Make sure you post pics when you're done eh!

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Paul Ducco
Solid Creative

Tim Daly's picture
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Joined: 11 Sep 2003 - 9:04am
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So it ages, but will it travel?
I pictured you hunting for oak galls or crushing insects:)
Tim

Don McCahill's picture
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Joined: 30 Mar 2006 - 7:55pm
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Speaking of odd cards, I remember a woodworker who built his cards out of scraps of wood. Of course, you could only fit one at a time in a card case, and they were hell with the rolodex.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Did he supply a pair of tweezers for the splinters as well? :-)

ChrisL

Don McCahill's picture
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Joined: 30 Mar 2006 - 7:55pm
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If you had suggested that his work would produce splinters, he would have been very offended. The wood was planed, sanded, varnished, and buffed to a high gloss.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Sorry Don, just a joke.

ChrisL

timfm's picture
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Joined: 18 Nov 2002 - 2:11am
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I fancy trimming the card size down so it's of divine proportions: 1:1.618

Can I get a AMEN?

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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no, you can't.

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Paul Ducco
Solid Creative

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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Oh, c'mon. I'll give you an AMEN, Tim.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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That was also a Divine Comedy Tim :-)

ChrisL

Linda Cunningham's picture
Joined: 26 Jul 2006 - 3:55pm
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I toss business cards that aren't the "standard" size, but there's always the choice to move to Artist Trading Cards (ATC): depending on the audience, there's that option too, at least for those of us in an ATC-friendly market.

Elliot M's picture
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Joined: 9 May 2005 - 7:21am
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in switzerland, 85x54mm is a standard size often used for business-cards.

This is credit card size (give or take a millimetre) and I have a feeling 'standard' business cards are tending to move toward this size..

timfm's picture
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Joined: 18 Nov 2002 - 2:11am
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Okay Mr. Ducco,

How about an "AUM?"

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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Hahahaha ... NO!! :P

I'll give you a James Brown "Watch meh" though.

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Paul Ducco
Solid Creative

timfm's picture
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Joined: 18 Nov 2002 - 2:11am
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Paul D's gotta brand new bag!

Ratbaggy's picture
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Joined: 30 May 2006 - 10:17pm
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Keep yer eyes off my bag Tim!

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Paul Ducco
Graphic Design, Melbourne

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Your living scateboard is getting a facelift courtesy of the pavement :-)

ChrisL

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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So here's a macro shot:

Besides the burgundy paper I also did a batch on a dark grape stock,
which didn't hold the ink as well but had somewhat better contrast.

BTW, due to the overall low contrast I decided to increase the smaller
type size a bit, which caused the card to get larger: 3-1/4 by 1-3/4

hhp

Jesse Phillips's picture
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Joined: 2 Jun 2006 - 2:44pm
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oh i want one.

Dav (formlos)'s picture
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Joined: 20 Feb 2002 - 11:00am
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Hrant, I also think yours is / became really nice.
But, Does it say 'www-themicrofoun..' on it?

Dav

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Yes, it's a spam protection measure.
And I also decided to shorten my last name.

Seriously: the crop looked good on the camera's screen... :-/

hhp

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Oh, or did you mean the "www" delimiter? It's a midpoint, not a dash.
Also, the "www" is ligated.

hhp

Dylan Menges's picture
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Joined: 11 Aug 2002 - 11:00am
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"Also, the 'www' is ligated."

I agree — this execution for the 'www' makes tons of sense, especially given the familiarity of the three letters these days.

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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I almost made a special glyph with 4 "v"s, but got lazy.

hhp

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Hrant,
What is the big symbol that looks like a T-square? Is that an Armenian glyph?

ChrisL

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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Yes, it's a traditional brush-written form of the
letter "eh", which has great spiritual resonance and
meaning in our culture; among other things, it means
"it is". When I was deciding on a logo for my foundry
many years ago, it seemed the natural choice.

BTW, the wine was Armenian too. :-)

hhp

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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The wine eh :-) It is what it is.
So you chose to print rather than drink it? Some Armenian vinyard may be cursing you right now for that :-D

ChrisL

Jesse Phillips's picture
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Joined: 2 Jun 2006 - 2:44pm
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so what meanings does "it is" mean? What are some other meanings of it? Can we see the full eh?

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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It alludes to things like: let there be, being (both noun and verb), god, etc. But
it's not just meaning, the letter eh's relevance to us is also... transcendental?
For example, above the khoran (altar) of every Armenian church (at least for Apostolics, who constitute the vast majority) you will find a large letter "eh" hovering, by itself.

hhp

Hrant H Papazian's picture
Joined: 3 May 2000 - 11:00am
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I forgot:
Jesse, that's the letter "eh" and then some; the bar would typically
go just a bit beyond the bottom element; I've extended it to signify
horizontality and continuity. You could say my logo is boundless on
the right, it just gets cropped (or faded out, like on my site) as required
by the medium - it's like a dynamic, living thing that compromises with
its environment... Can somebody say "massive post-rationalization"? ;-)

hhp