Thank You Cards for the TEDxConcordiaUPortland Gift Bags

Posted on Mar 16, 2012


I’m super excited to share this project that I helped put together for the TEDxConcordiaUPortland event on March 31st, 2012.  When the planning team was brainstorming on what we wanted to put in the gift bags, we came up with the idea of having a thank you card in each bag.

Egg Press

We thought this would be a great way for the attendees to participate in the day’s event by writing a thank you card to the person who moved them the most that day.  It would also be a way to engage the audience and get them conscious of all the greatness around them since they had to focus on the one thing that inspired them the most.

Jill Bliss

Now it was my job to make this project happen.  We definitely wanted to have thank you cards from artists in the community, but asking a small business for 600 cards seemed to be too much of a hardship.  So instead, I asked 6 local artists to each donate 100 cards.

Little Canoe

Deciding who to ask was hard.  There are so many amazing artists in town and my initial list was long.  After I sent out a first round of asks, I was really surprised and grateful that so many folks said yes!  And the folks that declined were so nice to let me know soon.  I’m continually amazed at how wonderful artists in Portland are.  Their generosity is inspiring.

Rachel Ann Austin

This whole project couldn’t have happened without the help of these artists.  All were so great at staying in touch and letting me know when I could pick up cards.  I have to admit when I first took this adventure on, I was a bit worried about pulling this off. What if nobody would donate?  What if someone flaked out and we only had 500 cards?  It was enough to keep me anxious for a month or two, but slowly all my fears just disappeared after working with these artists.  I knew we could make this happen and it would be amazing.

Lark Press

Maria, the owner of Collage, was also a huge help!  She generously offered to donate cello bags for many of the cards.  This really saved the day, because these bags would help protect the cards from getting squished.  I also wanted to include instructions for the attendees, so they would know what to do with the cards.

Arcane Arts

Figuring out the instructions was the next big task of this project. Besides what to say, I needed to decide what they would look like.  I wanted the directions to be cute, but not distract from the actual cards.  I also needed something simple to replicate 600 times.


I used my Sizzix Big Kick to create a nice edge to the instructions.   It was super easy to cut all 600 out in a few short hours. I originally bought my Big Kick to create my sister’s felt flower wedding bouquet and I’ve used it so much since.  It really is a handy tool


I’m so happy with how this turned out!  It was important to me to have a handmade touch to these gift bags.  I really hope the TEDxConcordiaUPortland attendees enjoy this activity.  I can’t wait to see who inspires me the most.

Thank you again: Egg Press, Jill Bliss, Lark Press, Little Canoe, Arcane ArtsRachel Ann Austin, and Collage.  This really was an incredible collective effort.

Have you gotten your ticket yet?  You can register for your ticket here.  I really hope you can make it.  It’s going to be an extraordinary day!


  1. Jolie – you are amazing to coordinate and get this project completed! We are so lucky to have you on the planning team for TEDxConcordiaUPortland!

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  2. Wow!!Super impressive Jolie, they look awesome. Can we write a Thank You to you?!!

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  3. Danny, I really wish you were in town, so you could come to this event. You would love it!

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  4. Thanks, Amanda! I’ve really enjoyed being on such a great team. I’ve learned a lot and I’m having so much fun. :)

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  5. Hi Jolie, thanks I got already an idea on what designs do i have to do on my cards to be given to my classmates, I’ll gonna give my classmates a special thank you cards before were leaving each other.

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