Send the write message

Send the write message

Hongkong Post hopes to encourage the old art of letter-writing through sending postcards, with its 'Make My Card' service

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Local artist Crystal Lau (right) designed some of the cards, while Estella Chow is keen to revive a treasured tradition.
Local artist Crystal Lau (right) designed some of the cards, while Estella Chow is keen to revive a treasured tradition.
Photo: Nora Tam/SCMP
With a few touches on our mobile phone or iPad, we can now take a photograph with a message and send it to our friends and family any time, anywhere. But while advanced technology makes communication faster and easier, it cannot replace the personal touch and warm feeling that a postcard in the mailbox brings. Which is why the Hongkong Post launched its "Make My Card" service in March last year.

The personalised service is a convenient one-stop shop. You can upload your favourite digital photo, type a message in Chinese or English, and add a local or overseas address. Then, a real postcard will be sent to your loved one. There are cards for many occasions to choose from, including birthdays, graduations, festivals, and saying "thank you" or "sorry". You can also specify a date of your choice to be printed on the stamp chop designed with the card.

The service cleverly combines today's technology with a traditional way of communication treasured by many, says Estella Chow, director of product development, marketing and sales at Hongkong Post.

"With the growth of technology, fewer people write postcards or letters now, which is inevitable. But postcards carry a special meaning [in our memory]. When we were young, we liked to send postcards to friends and family while travelling. Hongkong Post wants to use this platform to revive the tradition and encourage people to express their love," says Chow.

To make the postcards more attractive, with a special Hong Kong "feel", local designers are invited to create them. Three designers - Tam Cheuk-man of Cheuk's Creation, Prudence Mak of Chocolate Rain, and Crystal Lau Hoi-ka of Ichirei - have already designed a set of cards. Hongkong Post says more designers will be joining the team for this permanent service.

Lau is excited to have the chance to collaborate with Hongkong Post.

"It's the first time I've worked on a government project and it is very meaningful to me," says the young designer, who graduated in digital media from Baptist University in 2008.

"When I was a student, I loved writing postcards and buying beautiful letter pads to write on. Now my friends and I WhatsApp each other. I think it's nice to revive this old habit."

In designing the postcards, Lau used her brand character, Ichirei, a girl drawn in her image whose boyfriend, Ah Chung, is her boyfriend in real life. The couple is accompanied by cute animal friends.

Lau says she likes to keep her designs simple, with positive life messages. "Young people seem to live under a lot of pressure today," she says. "My characters are all living a simple life with good friends. I believe that's how we can be happy."

To send your own card, visit www.shopthrupost.hk

Hongkong Post has offered 25 Young Post readers the chance to use Make My Card for free. Each reader, when selected, will be entitled to choose and send two different types of cards locally. To register, send your full name, telephone number and e-mail address, with the subject line "Make My Card", to reporters.club@scmp.com before January 18. You will receive a confirmation from Hongkong Post if selected.

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