For all the mind-numbing busywork of starting a new business, certain tasks come with real emotional rewards. That’s certainly the case in choosing this new business card holder. Like practically every other piece of start-up research, this one took time and shoe leather. After visiting four physical shops and nearly two dozen Etsy stores, I finally settled on this handsome handcrafted wooden piece.
What clinched it for me was the manufacturer, Inelastic Goods, is a one-man operation based right here in Madison. Steve, the creator of the line, delivered the item himself, eager to show me six or seven different models. I jumped at the chance to buy two additional cardholders at a discount.
I’m keeping the white oak for myself and have bought two of the darker wenge wood models for gifts. The wenge wood model is striking in the contrast of two dark planes sandwiching a lighter maple side piece. The white oak does the opposite, playing up the continuous grain and color, as if the box were carved from a single block of wood.
All models come with a magnetic closure that clicks shut oh so satisfyingly. I catch myself playing with it constantly. Plus, beyond the visual delight of the hand-finished hardwoods, Steve’s execution of the clean, minimalist design is unparalleled. Each piece feels stunningly smooth in the hand, the joinery, edges, and curves so silky and organic.
By day, Steve works as an engineer for the state of Wisconsin. On his own time he exercises his entrepreneurial spirit, refining his craft, streamlining his processes and tools, with the aim of not only perfecting the product, but boosting productivity. His woodshop has become so efficient, he’s recently made good on a private order of sixty business cardholders to a private individual.
Head over to Steve’s Etsy shop for a look at the different models: