Cardigan is a project I started building in 2016 that blends e-commerce and a personal touch. It’s my goal to offer a way to send greeting cards to people in the mail all through a web interface, including shopping and personalization, stamping and sending.
It’s not the first application to try and let you personalize a greeting card online, but it does so while keeping your real handwriting intact, something that I believe is important. The application does this by digitizing a picture of your handwritten message and printing it on a greeting card.
The store isn’t open quite yet, but I’ve built a way for people get engaged early with the service. Before I started collecting inventory, I wanted to do some research and get a sense for the types of cards people like. There are many ways to do this, but I felt like my own taste in cards was not be the best gauge for which ones would sell. For instance, my favorite kinds of cards have no messages whatsoever. So I built a way for early users to tell me about their tastes in a Tinder-style swiping interface. They’re able to swipe left or right on cards they would actually send to someone.
I got a lot of positive results from users swiping. People were engaged and coming back daily to swipe on more cards, which was feeding a recommendation engine to be used later on the site.
Another piece I enjoyed building was the ability to save contact information in an address book. I’m a big fan of making awesome micro-interactions inside a product. Filling out addresses is no fun, especially if you have a lot of contacts and you the interface for doing so is finicky.