Henries Awards 2024 open for entries

Shout about your fabulous ranges and nominate top service providers in ultimate accolades


Are you ready to shout about your fabulous ranges and great service? Then it’s time to enter the Henries Awards 2024, where the best of the best greeting cards and publishers are honoured.

The UK leads the world in both design and per capita send on the greeting card front and the 29th annual Henries Awards are now open with a deadline of Friday, 14 June, for products and ranges, while the Lynn Tait Best Young Designer Or Artist, Best Service To The independent, and Honorary Achievement categories take entries until Thursday, 25 July.

Above: The Henries website incorporates the entry portal
Above: The Henries website incorporates the entry portal

For the third year running there will be a two-stage judging process for the main product categories – Best Diversity & Inclusion Range; Best Humorous Range; Best Licensed Entertainment Or Character Brand Range; Best Licensed Heritage, Lifestyle, Art Or Design Brand Range; Best Christmas Counter Range; Best Christmas Box Or Pack Collection; Best Cute Range; Best Contemporary Words & Sentiments Range; Best Traditional Words & Sentiments Range; Best Art Range; Best Photographic Range; Best Children’s Range; Best Contemporary Trend Range; Best 3D, Pop-Up, Hand-finished Or Handmade Range; Best Male Range; Best Relations &/Or Occasions Range; Best Spring Seasons Range; Best Wholesale Range; Best Giftwrappings Range; and The Henry Cole Classic Award.

The initial judging stage will take place entirely online through the www.thehenriesawards.co.uk website, thanks to an extensive panel of retail buyers who will be invited to judge at least six categories each.

As a result of the judges’ online votes, a shortlist of contenders will be drawn up and announced in mid-July to go forward to the live judging round, again judged entirely by retailers, where publishers will be asked to supply physical card samples to be put on display at special session at the end of July for the panel to examine in person where their votes are counted to decide the finalists and winner in all product categories.

Above: There’s an ancient Rome theme for the big awards do on 3 October
Above: There’s an ancient Rome theme for the big awards do on 3 October

“The two-stage judging approach has been so successful it’s now an integral part of The Henries,” said Jakki Brown, managing director of Max Publishing, which owns and organises the awards.

“Online the retail judges have time to carefully consider the entries at their leisure, then they get together for an enjoyable in-person judging day viewing the shortlisted ranges in the flesh with many of their retailing pals.”

The ultimate accolade in greeting cards, each year over 14,000 cards are entered, covering the whole span of styles and occasions and, for 2024, the awards have been expanded to acknowledge the rise in licensing collaborations from publishers of all sizes, now with two categories covering entertainment and character, and heritage, lifestyle, art and design.

For all product categories, submissions should be for card ranges that have been launched at retail between 15 June, 2023, and 14 June, 2024, or for new designs to an existing range launched within that period.

Entries for the Best Spring Seasons Range category should be event-specific, submit a separate entry for Valentine’s Day, a separate entry for Mother’s Day, etc.

And, of course, there’s the coveted Henry Cole Classic Award, open to all greeting card ranges that have stood the test of time, having been published for at least the past eight years, and still for sale.

Retailers are a major element in the process of getting the card from the drawing board to the mantlepiece, and how they are treated by publishers is so important, making the Best Service To The Independent Retailer one of the most highly-prized awards.

Above: The 2023 winners’ line-up – will it be you this year?
Above: The 2023 winners’ line-up – will it be you this year?

Sponsored by buying group Cardgains, this award has three winners – gold, silver and bronze – and Jakki added: “Nominations are invited from indie retailers to tell us which card publishers and giftwrap suppliers you feel have excelled on the service front in the past year.”

There’s also the Honorary Achievement Award, presented each year to an individual in recognition of the contribution they have made to the greeting card industry. Nominees can come from any aspect of the industry – retailer, publisher, designer or supplier – and all nominations will be treated in the strictest of confidence. The deadline for Service and Achievement nominations is Thursday, 24 July, 2024.

The full list of categories, sponsors, and entry criteria can be found on the website, where a new account needs to be made for this year’s entries and nominations.

Named after Sir Henry Cole, the man who introduced the first commercially-produced Christmas card in 18453, The Henries awards event is the industry’s big night and a fabulous opportunity for the greeting card community to get together to celebrate its creative excellence as well as its strong sense of camaraderie.

Above: The Cardgains-sponsored best service awards are highly coveted – 2023 winners were International Cards & Gifts (main pic) with gold, Noel Tatt (top left) won silver and Dandelion Stationery took bronze
Above: The Cardgains-sponsored best service awards are highly coveted – 2023 winners were International Cards & Gifts (main pic) with gold, Noel Tatt (top left) won silver and Dandelion Stationery took bronze

The generous sponsors for the event include Alpha Colour Printers, Autumn Fair, Cardgains, Cardfactory, Designer Greetings, EBB Paper, Fedrigoni UK, Fujifilm, G.F Smith, Gould Paper Sales, Graphite Creative, The Imaging Centre, Loxleys, PG Live, Postmark, Scribbler, Sherwood Group, Skylight Media, Spring Fair, UK Envelope Centre and Windles Group.

Taking place at The Royal Lancaster Hotel in London on Thursday, 3 October, 2024, The Henries 2024 awards will be an all-singing all-dancing event, with a colourful and vibrant ancient Rome theme! To book tickets for the champagne drinks reception, sumptuous three-course meal, celebrity host, awards ceremony and after-party fun, click here.

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