Greetings Trend: Cocooning Waves

In the swim of the second greeting card trend spotted at the Top Drawer and Spring Fair shows earlier this year, Gale Astley, greetings industry journalist, product photographer and promo filmmaker, reflects the tide of wavy motifs cresting on cards in 2023, in both illustration and form.

A swell of curves are gently lapping onto the shores of the design world for 2023, making waves in interior spaces, circling our subconscious craving for cocooning and comfort in the current fraught and difficult economic times.

Influenced by 1970’s nostalgia and biophillic design, serpentine patterns and natural contours are rotating the current homewares sphere, with curvaceous and arched furniture, pebble-shaped or looping ceramics, mushroom lights, hypnotic lava lamps, wavy mirrors and wallpaper prints enveloping us in a warm circuitous hug of emotional refuge.

In the ebb and flow of greeting card designs, this year wavy motifs are flowing with undulations in both illustration and shape. Designs are awash with wavy patterns, wiggly warm sun beams or mystical psychic rays and swirling positive feel good vibes sharing their uplifting messages in electric colour foiled 70s bulbous and curled fonts, while female friendship designs often depict magical wavy-haired goddesses signifying global sisterhood and spiritual empowerment.

And as wavy design prints and curly loops, whirls and arched typefaces sashay with fluid energy on this year’s card catwalk, herald in the curvy arrival of a new wave line trending on greeting card designs, that of scalloped edges; a smooth rippling die-cut forming a soft, fabulously feminine feel to greeting cards’ usually straight edges, adding a visual rhythm that infuses a feeling of calm. One such wavy-inspired card range is Cosmique, one of Sister Paper Co.’s new collections, featuring shape-cut organic undulating edges..

Pictured top: Curvy fonts and undulating patterns encircle Pigment’s Studio Blom collection. In the Grid: Waves of joy on a design from Raspberry Blossom’s Happiness range; Making waves, a design from Laura Darrington; Design’s Glow range; an arched message of floral freedom on a Eastend Prints’ Golden Daze design; scalloped-edge and gold foil details on Ricicle Cards’ Paper Raven collab, its Fruity Flowers range; waves of joy on a design from Raspberry Blossom Happiness range; Caroline Gardener is bringing back scallop edges to its cards with its Happy Words range; a rippling and delicious cocktail design from Fox & Butler.

Emma reveals: “I love designing greeting cards that are an unconventional shape! The soft contours of Cosmique add a fluid, sculptural softness that’s unique and soothing to the eye; Upbeat yet comforting is the vibe we all need after the last few years!”

From the use of rounded wavy forms to create the sense of a cosy cuddle to the fluidity of waves and the rolling, rhythmic motion of oceans, rivers, lakes and streams. Tapping into our deep primal connection with natural water sources, the wavy motif is also a reminder of the fragility of these aquatic ecosystems, and springing from this green-aware watery glade are card designs brimming with wavy patterns and soft organic elliptical lines, compelling eco-conscious design and purchases.

Ahead of the curve on the planet preservation front, the greetings industry is constantly discovering inventive ways to cherish the earth when creating fresh designs. “Consumers are now more conscious of the environmental impact of products with traditional greeting card finishes like glitters”, says Emma Pearce, director of Sister Paper Co., adding, “I’ve taken this as a wonderful challenge to be more creative with the shapes of Sister Paper Co’s greeting cards.”

So hugging it out and giving a gentle nudge to respect our wild waterways, greeting card designs for 2023 are bobbing and brimming up to the surface in the glistening pool of the wavy design trend… and looking swell!

Below: Sister Paper Co’s Cosmique range is awash with soft sculptural edges;


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