How can I fault a store where you can get beautiful cards which look like they cost a fortune for just a couple of pounds?
Card Factory is springing up all over the place and the one in my local shopping centre is where I head for every time, knowing that there will be a card to suit the occasion. It's not just the big value prices either that are appealing. The cards are lovely and range from pretty handmade-style traditional designs to joke cards and cartoons for pals with a big sense of humour.
As well as the cards, there are the little trinkets and novelty gifts for when you need to buy something as a token to say thanks, you've done a good job or congratulations. Again, all of it looks decent quality but at such a good price I usually end up buying in supplies for the next round of occasions.
At peak card-giving times, it pays to make an early visit as near to Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and Christmas etc, the store gets very busy and it's difficult to see what you're doing. The pick of the cards goes quickly and the whole thing gets that January sales feeling about it.
Which is where I have to praise the staff. I have stood in some very long queues in Card Factory, waited patiently while people fumble in their purses to find the right money and then at the last minute, remember they've forgotten Uncle Jim. I have felt myself getting hot under the collar and ready to scream ... but the staff, who have seen it all day, are always efficient,quick and ready with a smile. A lovely shop which is a pleasure to visit, but nicer before that last minute rush.
There are Card Factory stores opening all over the country, so they are becoming increasingly local to everyone. There are several Card Factory stores close to me, and they are all very similar in appearance. They sell cheap, non-branded cards and gifts and they also sell helium balloons, candles, banners and other party accessories.
The cards are incredibly cheap, but they are also not great quality. I have rarely bought a card and been able to stick the envelope shut using the gum on the envelope. It never works. I either just use tape or tuck the top into the rest of the envelope. Often I have also found the cards to not have been folded straight.
In certain sections, there is not much choice, such as the age cards and small relations such as aunt, in-laws, etc. Other sections though do have an excellent selection, such as wedding, birth and close relations. Cards vary in price from 29p to £1.49 for regular cards and £1.99-£4.99 for bigger, boxed cards.
Staff in all of the shops that I have been in have always been helpful and polite. You can have displays of helium balloons in a variety of configurations for all occasions and at very reasonable prices.
It is a fantastic store for those on a budget as they regularly have lines of cards on offer at 5 for £1, 7 for £1 and 10 for £1.
The Card Factory is a greeting card and gift retailer which sells products at an unbeatable price. They have lots of stores all over the UK and we have one in my local town which has been opened about a year now. The store always seems to be quite busy when I go in here, which is probably due to the low prices of the products in here.
~ WHAT THEY SELL ~
Card Factory sell a range of greeting cards. Some of these are for special people or occasions such as Mum, Dad, Sister, Brother, Wedding Day, etc. They don't have a huge range of these cards though so only expect a small selection when you go into one of these stores. They also sell plain greeting cards for anyone, some of these are really good value and are also very good quality. This range if very small though and I often can't really find anything suitable for a friend's birthday in here. They also sell a range of wrapping paper including rolls and flat sheets of paper. They also have a small range of gift bags and gift boxes as well as a few bows and ribbons to go with the different paper. They have a small selection of gifts which can include joke items, small stationery gift packs and things such as baby gifts, wedding gifts and cuddly toys.
~ QUALITY OF THE PRODUCTS ~
Some of the cards in here are actually very good value, how-ever you do have to spend some time looking for the best quality cards as a lot of the time this is limited. Some of the cards look quite pricey and some have embellishments such as gems on them. Some of the plainer cards look quite cheap and are printed on quite thin card. The paper in here is fairly good quality. I have noticed that the paper on the rolls tend to be quite thin, whereas the sheets seem a little bit thicker than what you get on a roll. I can't really comment on the cuddly toys or the gifts as I have never purchased any of these items from here and don't think I would.
~ PRICES ~
The cards in here vary in price, and they can start from about 85p and can go up to about £3.00 per card. They often have great offers on some cards and I have often taken advantage of the card offers in here which are 7 cards for just £1.00, now that's value that you can't complain about. The cards which are in this offer are normally wrapped singly in their own packaging, so you don't have to go looking for envelopes to match the cards. Although the cards aren't of brilliant quality a lot of them are bright and colourful and perfect for children's birthdays. Their gifts are of reasonable price and are a lot cheaper than gifts from Clintons; how-ever the quality may not be the same, as the products in Card Factory do tend to look a little cheap.
~ CUSTOMER SERVICE ~
When shopping in my local store, the staff at the till and on the shop-floor are always very helpful and polite. They always serve customers with a smile and ensure that they have everything that they need. It does get busy in here during specific seasons such as Father's Day & Christmas and although the queues tend to get long, the tills are always fully staffed with them serving customers as quickly as they can to ensure they keep the queue level to a minimum. The staff wear a uniform in here which is black trousers and a blue jumper which says Card Factory in yellow writing on the right hand side of the jumper. This uniform is very casual but is also smart looking and it's easy to tell who the members of staff are in the shop.
~ OVERALL OPINION ~
Some of the cards in here are really good value, how-ever some of them are of quite poor quality and look as cheap as they are priced. I don't personally shop here for relation cards as I like to spend a bit more money on them and get a better quality card. For friend's birthdays I do tend to shop in here before looking anywhere else to see if I can get any deals on bulk lots of cards when they have them on offer. I have purchased wrapping paper from here a few times, for stocking filler presents and for pass the parcel game at parties, how-ever the paper is quite thin so it does tear and rip very easily. If you not one of these who likes to spend a lot of money on greeting cards then this shop is perfect for you, especially if you're not too fussed about the quality of the cards. I give this shop a total of 3 out of 5 stars as it is cheap, but the quality isn't brilliant and I wouldn't buy gifts from here.
(review also on ciao)
Coming from a large family I am constantly in need of cards and small gifts for birthdays and holidays. When I was younger my Mum would shop in Clintons which was ok back then but now that money is tighter its no longer possible for me to do. So when a birthday rolls round, which typically for me is 2 times per month I pop down to my local Card Factory store in my town centre and have a look around.
The shop always very aesthetically pleasing and depending on the time of year and which popular occasion is coming up it is decorated according. For example, the last time I visited it was full of roses and pinks and reds for the sake of Mother's day. The front of my store is often dedicated to the current occasion and so there will be an entire stand equipped with cards and gifts appropriate. The gifts paired with the mothers day items were varied from things like fridge magnets with heart-felt messages written on them to mugs with "I <3 Mum" written on them. In fact we still have a mug I purchased from the store when I was much younger and despite a little wear and tear it has lasted well over 7 years now, a small example of the great quality their own brand goods have to offer. Other brands include ones like "Me to You" and certain teddy bears.
The name of the shop logically implies what they sell, and that is cards! They offer a huge variety from Mother, Father, Son, Daughter, Sister, Brother to all the in-laws and even joke cards. There are also a few racy cards that are great for a jack-the-lad 20something year old and my Mum was prone to purhcasing these for my older male cousins instead of the usual nephew cards which were pretty age-biased with a small red card or Thomas the Tank Engine plastered on the front! Cards start as cheap as 99p and if you look about you are sure to find lovely quality ones. Often the £1.25 cards are a little less basic and so are worth buying from time to time if you aren't the kind of person to mind. My cynical self says that cards only ever get thrown away so while they make great sentimental gifts, I don't think it's necessary to spend a bucket-load on them and so Card Factory is perfect for meeting this need.
The pricier cards also include more complex hand-made cards that often are 3D or a little more creative. For example, instead of your bog standard embossed card, you can buy ones where the image almost pops out of you or the flower detail sits a little off the page adding a creative twist. I love these ones and more often then not tend to buy them for my Mum especially, because she was always the delocated card-buyer throughout my childhood so she enjoys good quality ones.
They also often do deals where less decorative cards can go for 7 for a £1 which is excellent if like me its easier to buy in bulk. They don't faulter on the quality, simply the price!
As mentioned other products include things like magnets, mugs and teddies. As well as this its possible to buy picture frames for certain occasions such as the birth of a new child or a marriage. Everything is made in a variety of sizes and the product list really is extensive. As well as this you can often buy diaries, rulers and pens etc. at the till. They also sell and inflate balloons in the shapes of a variety of cartoon characters or with messages written on them such as "Happy 18th". These too make great gifts because he doesn't love a big braggy balloon.
Overall Card Factory is an excellent store I frequently visit and will continue to do so. It is consistently cheap as they boast never having increased the prices of select goods in the past 10 years, and really a brand you can trust. It makes an excellent alternative to other card selling stores, especially on the price, and customer service tends to be cheap and cheerful as well as helpful when required. I would definitely recommend.
Also posted on ciao under m_illie
I usually go to Clintons for all my greetings cards, but as I'm trying to stick to a budget now I thought I'd better start shopping around a bit more so on the last few occasions I've needed a card I've ended up in Card Factory.
The main reason I've never shopped in Card Factory before is that just looking in the windows you can see it looks really cramped and I hate shopping in those kind of conditions. Admittedly I've only been to 2 different card factory stores but they've both been the same, small and cramped with too many displays squashed into too small a space. There's not enough aisle space between the displays so if there's someone else in an aisle you either bump into them or have to turn and go back the other way. It's really annoying because if there's more than a couple of people browsing the shop you just can't get in to look at anything.
The actual layout of the shop is fairly organised with the cards split up into sections such as wedding/birthday/anniversary/for him/for her etc. but they're not well signposted so it can still be quite difficult to locate the section you're after. The lighting is not great and it always seems a bit dark and depressing which is not great when you're trying to look at and read things.
The choice of cards is not great really and I've really struggled to find something I felt was nice enough every time I've gone in there. As an example when I was looking for a birthday card for my dad I found it really hard because all the ones that said 'dad' on had either football, golf or fishing themes, none of which are suitable for someone who likes none of those things. When I did finally spot a couple with seemingly suitable designs on they said 'daddy' on them rather than just 'dad' so would only really be suitable if being given by a young child. I ended up in the general birthday section but even there the majority of cards followed a particular theme which made them unsuitable, or were simply very old-fashioned, plain and boring, or just cheap looking. By contrast I've never had trouble finding a suitable design in Clintons, instead usually having to spend ages trying to decide which one out of several options I like the best.
They also have a small range of gift bags, gift boxes, wrapping paper and other gift type items, but I've never seen anything within these that looked of a good enough quality for me to actually buy.
Obviously the reason people shop here is the prices, which are very competitive. When I finally managed to find a suitable card for my dad's birthday I was surprised to find when I got to the till that it was only 59p, when a card of the same quality in Clinton's would have been more like £1.50-£2, so they do offer good value for money.
I really hope the staff are paid well because despite the horrible depressing lighting and cramped conditions they have to work in they are always really helpful, polite and friendly, much more so than most other shops I've ever been in.
The price of cards seems to have increased over the years, but not at Card Factory! Since discovering this store I try to stock up whenever I visit, as their cards are simply such good value.
Card Factory is a card shop that caters for all occasions from births, marriages, engagements, birthdays and specific birthday ages, through to Christmas and other specific celebrations throughout the year. They also sell a wide range of gifts including mugs, coasters and glasses with specific birthday ages, gifts for weddings and engagements as well as calendars, diaries and cuddly toys. They really do cater for most celebrations!
The shop is easily recognisable on the high street with their bright blue and yellow shop front.
I am fortunate enough to have a few Card Factory stores closely located to where I live, and I believe they are UK wide.
When you enter a Card Factory store they are all fairly similar in terms of layout and lighting. The stores are well laid out into different sections, for instance individual age cards, cards for Mum's, Dad's, etc. If it is a time of year when there is a special occasion such as Valentines then they will also have a section of the store dedicated to it, making it very easy to find what you are looking for.
I have found that the range of cards within each section is also really extensive and have always been able to find a card suitable, even for those difficult to buy for! They really do seem to cater for all tastes.
Price wise their cards are the most reasonable I have found, with a standard card costing from 39p through to more expensive cards between £1-£1.50. Compared to many other high street card shops their prices are a lot lower. They often also have a section of cards where you can select 7 cards for only £1! These cards are normally for birthdays but some are blank so you could use for simply sending a "hello" card to someone.
Overall I would definitely recommend having a look inside when you next come across a Card Factory store. Their cards and gifts are of good quality for really low prices. I don't think you'll find better value for money!
With the amount of occasions that require cards it's pretty important to me to be able to find a nicely worded piece of text that won't break the bank.
My local Card Factory is the place that I always go to when I have a card need. The shop itself is normally very crowded and when I have my little one with me it's usually a struggle to get in the door farless getting to see what they have on offer.
The aisles are pretty small so it's not easy to move through them without blocking someones way.
The thing I like most is the fact that they have a huge range of cards and little gifts for really low prices. I usually pick up a range of spare cards in the 10 for £1 offer just incase I manage to forget a birthday or I don't have time to get out.
I think if my shop had a bigger layout then it would be perfect but even as it is you still get great cards for great value and that's ultimately what I look for.
Since discovering The Card Factory in my local shopping centre last year, I won't go anywhere else for birthday and Christmas cards. Other card shops such as Birthdays, Clintons etc charge extortionate prices for cards, up to £5!! At The Card Factory you can around 20 cards for this price (sometimes they have 4 for £1 offers). You'd think at that price the quality must be awful, well they are great! You can still buy all the humerous cards, special sentimental cards and personal cards at this price and they don't look any worse in quality.
Obviously everyones tastes differ but there is so much choice in The Card Factory that I think it's impossible not to find a suitable card for somebody.
My family and friends have the same view as I do that a card for any occasion is about the thought you put into the words you write in it, not how much you paid for the card. The Card Factory offer a huge choice in cards for all occasions.
The cards available also have great designs for all ages. You can get cards suitable for grandparents and babies so there really is something for everyone.
This shop has become really popular and my local one is always very busy. Although you may have to queue for a few minutes it's worth the savings that you will make. I have found the staff to be friendly and helpful in the two different stores I have visited.
The card factory also sells a great selection of gift bags and boxes starting from around £0.89, which is brilliant value in my opinion. They also sell foil balloons, wrapping paper, key rings, and occasionally stationary such as novelty pens.
The only thing I would say is that because the shop has become so popular, it can get very crowded and sometimes you'll have to wait a minute to even get to the section of cards you want after battling the crowds but this is a small price to pay.
Overall I think this is a fantastic shop that broke into the high street finally offering cards and gift wrap at good value. Next time you walk past this shop, just look at the custom as this shop is never empty! A welcome high street store in the recession!
Cards well lets face it what's the point they get sent, they get put up , they get thrown away or saved for years and then thrown away either way we all like getting them and we all like giving them but they can be pricey and I mean real pricey some shops I have been in will charge up to £15 for a card now come on surely you would rather have the money.
This is where the Card Factory comes in. The sell cards of course but at reasonable prices you can even pick the huge cards up for less than £2 which is brilliant. They stock cards for all occasions- Birthdays, Seasonal festivals, Friendships, Good Luck etc basically all you can get in other shops. There is not a huge range but there is enough and for me I find it frustrating to have to stand in card shops for hours with people who feel the need to read all the cards in the shop then pick the one they had in they had in the first place.
The card factory I have been in always tend to be well laid out an dkept tidy its not like entering a junk sale which is good, they do however get quite busy so I like to go in in the week as the weekends can get quite packed. However ques always seem to be cleared quickly. The Card Factory also stocks boxes of cards for christmas and wrapping paper also they do small gifts you can pick up for stocking fillers. Card Factory also do deals of 5 cards for a £1 which I find is good for those birthdays that slip your mind til the day. some do look cheap looking but if you have a good rummage you can pick up some good ones.
I recommend Card Factory to anyone it meets my card needs.
I am a huge fan of the card factory, why pay £2+ for a card in Clinton's when you can get three or more for that price in the card factory and they are just as nice.
My family have the same view as I do that a card for any occasion is about the thought you put into what you write on it and for sending it not how much you paid for the card. The card factory offer a huge choice in cards for all occasions for as little as £0.29 each!!
The cards available also have great designs from modern, cute and funny cards on offer. In fact if I am shopping for my grand parents then the card factory is my first stop, being of the older generation they prefer cards with a nice verse which is something the likes of Clinton's offers little choice off now days.
I became a huge fan of the card factory last Christmas, I needed several special individual cards and gift bags. My first stop was Clinton's where I was amazed and appalled at the prices, some of the cards I was picking up were up to £5.00 each!! I just could not afford or justify spending in the region of £30-£40 on a few cards and gift bags. This is when I decided to try the card factory, I got everything I needed for under £15. The only problem I had was with how busy the shop was, but it was very close to Christmas and for the huge amount I saved it was defiantly worth the queuing.
The card factory also sells a huge selection of gift bags/boxes starting from around £0.89. As well as gift wrap, bows, foil helium filled balloons, invitations and small gifts.
The only small downside to the shops are that they are a little small which means they can become easily crowded. They can also be a little disorganised at busy times such as Christmas but if you can be patient its still worth a visit. The staff are also very helpful and friendly and operate the tills at a very fast speed to reduce queuing time. You just need to remember to take cash with you as the shops only offer cash payment at the moment.
In conclusion the card factory is a fantastic shop that does exactly what Clinton's does at less than half the price. So if its the thought that counts for you and not the price then get to the card factory for a bargain!
Card Factory stores can be found in a number of towns across the country. They sell greetings cards predominantly but also stock wrapping paper, balloons, gift bags and small gifts.
The idea of Card Factory is that their products cost less than the other leading card shops with their slogan being 'if its the thought that counts, why do the others charge so much?'
Card Factory shops are usually smaller than other card shops. I find that they are always quite busy and I imagine it must be hell around Christmas time!
There are a good range of cards, however I have found that when there is an event such as Easter, they do not have such a good range of thei other cards. For example, I went in there a while back to find a niece birthday card, my niece was going to be 10 and I wanted to find her a nice card. However, there were only 4 to choose from and they were all either for older people or for very young children so I had to look elsewhere.
The main thing that attracts me to Card Factory is their prices. You can get a decent sized, nice greetings card for less than a pound where other card shops would charge more than double this.
For example the other day I bought two Nan birthday cards, one A5 sized and one a bit smaller, they both had a really nice bear on and they were quite modern, the cards were both very good quality. The A5 one cost 89p and the smaller one just 59p.
The gifts in the store are limited and are really just little things to accompany your card such as birthday badges, sometimes novelty glasses or keyrings and fridge magnets. Again, the prices for these are reasonable.
The staff I have found to be ok. Not overly polite but not rude either.
I like card factory and think it is a great way to get greetings cards cheaper as they can be very expensive. I will continue to visit and recommend you give them a visit too.
I visited the card factory for the first time when I was trying to find some little novelty gifts for my partner from our daughter on fathers day. I normally find that with these kind of card and gift shop that they all sell pretty much the same ( i think they must use the same supplier! ) but the card factory seemed to have a good range of different gifts that I have never seen before.
First impressions I thought it looked a bit cheap but the products they sold were very good quality!
They sell gift sets like mugs with place mats, stationary, huge cards and you can pretty much guarentee you can find something in there! and the price is very reasonable!
We use our local store in Nuneaton and we have found that it is spacious so we can easily get the pram around, the only downside is when you go to the tills you have to reach over a counter with loads of items to buy to give your shopping to the till attendant and I could only just reach so if you were really short I think you would struggle! I think the idea behind it is for you to look at the items and hopefully you will buy one at the last minute!
I have always hated paying more than £1 for a card, so since discovering Card Factory I've rarely bought cards anywhere else. Their cards are cheap compared to rival card shops, most less than a pound. They also have bulk buy cards, 3, 5, 7, or 10 for £1, which is great value as I regularly need birthday cards for university friends. They also have a good (mostly) tasteful selection of novelty cards.
In addition to cards they have all the accessories you would expect: balloons, banners, gift bags, gift wrap, ribbon, door signs, keyrings, gifts, toys etc. I bought a graduation bear for my sister for £2, which I was very pleased with.
Most of the cards are of good quality so it's great value for money. They don't have any of the more intricate hand-made items found in Clintons etc but I'd never buy them anyway so I'm not missing out. Of course in this type of shop there are some tacky items best avoided but many bargains to be had too.
It should be noted that, certainly in the 2 stores I visit, the minimum spend to pay by card is £5. Also, on occasion I have given up trying to go in store as it's so busy, normally close to mother's/father's day. In the north-east they have mother's day cards with mam on instead, which as a southerner I find a bit of a novelty!
(review is also posted on my ciao account under the same name)
It's funny now, but I can't remember what I used to do without Card Factory. I really love this shop and every time I go to my local shopping centre I tend to pop in because there's always some event coming up that needs something buying for it.
The first thing to be mentioned is prices. They are significantly lower than rivals such as Clintons. These days, Card Factory is always busy and Clintons and similar shops like WH Smiths and Birthdays must be feeling the pain as they are always relatively empty.
Cards can be bought from as little as 59p and the highest I have seen is £2 which is probably the minimum at other shops. They also sell rolls of wrapping paper, either £1 or £2 and sheets and decorative items such as tags, ribbons and bows. They also do some fabulous gift bags in all different shapes and sizes which are normally from £1 to £3. They also do plenty of gifts such as photo frames, mugs, named items, candles, bears and so on. In short, the standard range for a card shop.
It is the cards that are the real pull though for me. They have a permanenet range of cards for birthdays, weddings, new babies and so on and do themed ranges according to the time of year, so a section for Easter, which becomes Father's Day and so on or themed with a special offer at other times of the year when there is no 'festival'.
Little cards are very cheap but you can buy a lovely one for a £1 which is great and even the novelty giant cards are £2 at most so excellent value. Recently they did a faboulous offer of 7 cards for £1 which I got. The cards may not have been the most exciting designs but they were all nice enough to give to someone.
The shop that I have near me isn't huge and when it comes to Christmas or something is absolutely packed but it is bearable. However, there are always very long queues as they don't have enough of the blue t-shirted staff on the tills. They also do good half price sales after major events which is handy for stocking up for next year I say.
I can't really fault this shop. For tomorrow, Fathers' Day, I got a fabulous card for 89p (which I am sure would have been £2.50ish elsewhere) and a lovely themed gift bag for £1. What bargains!
Card Factory has been established since 1997 and claims to have been on the UK's high streets for over a decade, making them one of the most well known card shops around.
I love Card Factory just for the simplicity of entering one of their shops and instantly being surrounded by relatively top quality cards at really low prices. In some other high street stores you pay a premium for nearly the same type of card and it can set you back a lot of money if you are buying several at once.
As a lot of my friend's birthdays come about in around the same period of time, it can often be difficult to keep up with all the cards and presents I have to buy. When I go to the Card Factory all I need to do is to take advantage of their extremely cheap prices and offers that they have on all year round. I recently went into my local branch and picked up 7 beautiful cards for just £1, before Card Factory that would have cost me close to £10.
You can literally find any type of card for any occasion in one of their shops and they are often laid out so that the most recent public holiday cards (such as St. Georges Day for example) are to the front so you don't have to manoeuvre the walkways searching high and low trying to find them. The birthday cards are all grouped in gender and then again sub grouped into which member of the family you are purchasing for.
Card Factory don't just supply cards, they also do a whole range of other items, such as small gifts, novelty items for specific birthdays and other occasions as well as wrapping paper (which is quite nice though not very strong or thick but it only usually costs a pound for a whole roll).
I personally find some of the gifts a little bit tacky and wouldn't particularly buy them as a serious present for a friend but you can find some really nice items in there that would make fantastic birthday presents for anyone you could think of. As I mentioned before the wrapping paper isn't a great quality but it does the job which is more what you ask for and it means you don't have to shell out a huge amount of money to wrap the gift you've bought to go with your cheap card.
The only problem that I could ever have with Card Factory is that you have to pay by cash when you are shopping there which makes it increasingly frustrating if you don't have the change or don't tend to carry money around like myself. Sometimes it is just easier to pay by card as you don't have to draw out a round amount for when you might only be spending £2.
Card Factory managed to donate £1,000,000 to the charity Macmillan Cancer Support in 2008 and is currently in the process of donating more through to 2011. I think this is very commendable and it makes me more likely to shop there as I can then be part of donating to a worthy cause.