Don’t Buy Me a $7 Greeting Card

By: Peggy Willms 


(3 min. read)

One month ago, I lost my mind. Not that it is a rare occasion, but this one had built up for years because I hadn’t confronted my anger. It was swelling like a water balloon, and it exploded. Why? -The disgusting inflation of the greeting card business. I received two birthday cards from my loved ones totaling over $14. TWO CARDS. FOURTEEN DOLLARS. Hell, that’s four gallons of gas!

You think the NFL is a humungous monopoly and market manipulator. Hallmark is worse—preying on emotions and a desire to meet the social standard of purchasing pictures and words on a piece of paper for $7. And the global greeting card business is expected to top 12.2 billion dollars in 2030.[1]

Back story. My second highest love language is Words of Affirmation. Gary Chapman’s Love Language quiz ranks certain thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and you learn the ranking of your five love languages (Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Touch, Acts of Service). With 30 as the max score, my secondary language is Words of Affirmation (10/30), with Quality Time sitting only one point higher as my primary loving language (11/30). For those of us with Words of Affirmation as a top love language, words either cut and kill you or send you flying into the abyss feeling like the second coming.

This is likely why being raped by the greeting card businesses pisses me off. 

I am the leave-a-sticky note, write-with-lipstick-on-the-mirror-put-a-sign-on-the-door-or-50-scribbled-notes-hidden-around-the-house kind of girl. (Hello, bottom of the tissue box.)

We don’t HAVE to buy a $7 birthday card. It is a choice. Many companies are producing “cheaper” cards. Welcome to the Dollar Store. And if it weren’t for the societal push, most of us would be happier with the sentiments written on a blank card than receiving three sentences printed on the expensive “Cadillac” version. Admit it, you look at the price of the card. We all do. Does it represent your value as a human being? “OMG, he only spent 99 cents on this card. ‘I mean nothing to him.’”

There are a variety of factors that contribute to overall cost.

Small mom-and-pop shops and struggling artists deserve what they charge. I agree. They use their God-given talents, time, and effort to create something more personal. Their small-scale production of homemade artisan cards is often made in smaller quantities, especially for specific occasions or niche markets, and this can lead to higher per-unit costs compared to items manufactured in large volumes.

Those cards with intricate drawings on high-quality paper or those with embellishments such as foil, embossing, or glitter are more costly to produce. Hiring skilled artists, graphic designers, and printing professionals inflate costs. Then, there is also the distribution and markup charged by retailers. They want their cut. Licensing and royalties can increase costs because companies purchase greeting card designs featuring licensed characters, artwork, or quotes, which may require the payment of royalties to the original creators or copyright holders.

However, you can find a quality card at a price point you can afford with the particular message you wish to convey without breaking the bank. The average person could spend upwards of $100 a year on cards.

Greeting card companies play on society’s “expectations,” much like in other areas of our lives. The “what you wear, what you drive, and where you live” mentality creates your identity, playing off the notion that spending more equals higher quality and that the giver “loves you more.” GROSS

I challenge you to tell your loved ones that you are just as thrilled with a hand-made card or that you would rather have their personal words of devotion written on a piece of printer paper, just as I have told my kids for years. I treasure those sticky notes. I have kept them all. And their value is priceless.

I love you all, but please never ever spend your precious $7 on a card for me again.



Peggy Willms
All Things Wellness, LLC

The information provided is the opinion of the author. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice: diagnosis or treatment. The author, the business, All Things Wellness, LLC, and its owner Peggy Willms, are not liable for risks or issues associated with using or acting upon the information in this article or website. We assume no responsibility for tangible and intangible damages such as physical harm caused by using a product, loss of profits or loss of data, and defamatory comments. This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn from qualifying purchases.