Card sharp

Few would disagree that financial institutions have a bit of an image problem at the moment. It’s something that Japanese credit card company Epos Card is doing its best to avoid with its 100 Design Card project. In return for a measly ¥1000 (£6), you get to choose one of a list of 100 different cards. It’s all very different from the junk mail asking you whether you want a card with a tawdry picture of an elephant or a giraffe on it. With designers of the ilk of Eboy, Marti Guixé, Tomato’s Tota Hasegawa and Julie Verhoeven on board the project, many of the results are genuinely lovely. And while getting celebrities to design cards is not new – Coutts upped the snob appeal of its cards with designs by Stella McCartney and Oswald Boateng a few years back – the way Epos has gone about it is pretty impressive, and very international in reach. Oslo-based Bleed was responsible for co-ordinating the 20 European designs, with England represented by Neil Duerden and Scotland by Alan Campbell. The cards are sweetly presented online in silver frames, as if they were works of art, and they will be exhibited in one of the containers that form part of Tokyo Designers Week, which starts this Friday. Given the global economic mayhem, we all need more encouragement than ever to open our wallets. What more pleasurable way to do it than this?Epos Card Gallery can be seen at www.eposcard.co.jp/campaign/100designcards. Tokyo Designers Week runs until 3 November. For more details, see www.da-npo.org/tdw08`



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