Monday, October 5, 2015

Review: Trena's Creative Designs

In today’s world of technology, any bit of real tangible mail is worth gold to many people, myself included. There is nothing like receiving a card with someone’s real handwriting inside. That takes so much more time and effort than drafting an email or a “Happy Birthday!” on someone’s social media.

To deepen that personal connection, what if instead of browsing the 99 cent rack at the drugstore, you ordered a handmade card? Maybe you aren't crafty yourself, or have the tools, or the time - but you still want to show that special person how much they mean to you!

At Trena’s Creative Designs, you can choose from a selection of handmade cards for various occasions - birthday, wedding, graduation, births, and thank yous. Each card retails for $5.50 each.

Owner and Artist, Trena Riggins sent me a ‘Welcome Baby Boy’ card. It arrived in a normal envelope as if I was the receiver, as opposed to the purchaser to become the giver. There was no blank envelope along with it. Her website does state 'envelopes included' but I assume a purchased card would come with a blank envelope in a larger mailer.

Trena's Creative Designs cards are created using scrapbooking materials and processes. Scrapbooking has long been a huge passion of mine. I wish I still have the time to sit and do it, but with two kids, its been a few years. I started when I was 13, and have 5 large completed books under my belt. All of her cards are very scrapbook style.

The card was very cute. It was a powder blue, with ‘boy’ bordering on the front, a bib, a baby giraffe and other decorations in the form of stickers and cut construction paper.

The card opens horizontally. The inside had a large yellow rectangle with some writing printing on it and cut with wavy scrapbook edging sheers. It read,

“Sweet baby boy, here to stay!
Ten little fingers, ten little toes,
Bless each day with love and joy!
Welcome little one!

There was plenty of blank space on the top half of the card for you to add your own writing. The back of the card had a small green paper with a stamped writing that said “Created for you by Trena’s Creative Designs."

If I was on the receiving end of this card, I would be very appreciative of how charming it was.

However, as a consumer of the product, I was concerned about some of the elements used. Through trial and error (and many mistakes), I’ve come to know the difference between a good scrapbook sticker and small dollar packs.  On this card, the way they were peeling off with little to no ‘sticky’ left on the back tells me these were closer to the latter option.

I feel as though this particular item was pretty rushed. Looking at the examples on her website, it seems vastly different than what she is clearly able to produce, and that was saddening.  I suspect this is not actually indicative of what a purchaser would receive.

The border along the top as well as the decorative triangles in the corners, don’t even touch the edge. The inscription inside was crooked. This may have been shooting for artsy, but my OCD was only annoyed. Also, I really felt like the words should have rhymed or at least had some sort of rhythm to them. (Maybe that’s just me?)

The stamp on the back with her company’s name was very faded ink. It just takes away from the appearance, in my opinion.

Lastly, and my biggest peeve, is the jagged edge left on the card. If you notice in the pictures, the left side was clearly where the size of the card was cut from a larger piece of blue paper. I can’t tell if it was cut, or if it was folded, licked and torn. All other edges are nice and clean, so its very bothersome that this side was so hastily done.

I'm hesitant to declare this a good example of Trena's work, and the price is reasonable enough to give Trena's Creative Designs a try - her autumn themed cards, especially are very appealing!

I personally would be unlikely to become a regular customer, simply because I have the ability to recreate such an item. However, acknowledging that not everyone has the time, creativity, or tools to do such things, the price point would make this a smart decision. As a recipient I would much rather get this over a stock card any day.

As I mentioned, each card can be purchased for $5.50. Trena has a note on her website to contact her via Facebook to inquire about obtaining bundles of 5 or 10. Baby/bridal shower invitations can be bought in bundles of 10 for $7.00.


  1. These handmade cards are lovely and what a terrific idea. I still enjoy getting mail as well as sending it too.
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  2. This is great. Thanks for sharing.