And the LOUIE Awards and Gala Go to….

Card Talk spoke with LOUIE Awards Chair Molly DelMestro, VP, Creative, Viabella and Chair of the 29th Annual LOUIE Awards, about this month’s LOUIE Awards Call for Entries, a new theme for 2018, what winning a LOUIE means, what inspires her, and what’s in store for this year’s LOUIE Awards.

Card Talk: What’s new this year?

DelMastro:  To start, we have a great theme, “Street Pop.”  It’s “raw meets refined” and it’s really exciting!  It has a “pop art” vibe, with a graffiti street style and funkiness.  It connects with and highlights the greeting card industry: “Street Pop” is fluid, relevant and fun.  Art has a voice and a look and in this case, bright and fun colors.  As an industry, we are visual communicators.  We came up with five themes and this one was my favorite…it has good energy, the visuals are expressive – and it’s relevant to where we are.

Card Talk: The Edison Ballroom has been home to the LOUIE Gala for several years – will Street Pop be appearing there?

DelMastro: Julie (Julie Elfand, GCA Director of Meetings) and I have conducted several site visits for possible venues.  We are down to a couple of very strong contenders – and we need to make sure that the venue meets our specific criteria.  Stay tuned for more details on the Gala!

Card Talk: We’ve seen a real variety in LOUIE themes – from the art deco to out of this world… does “Street Pop” fit into that sequence?

DelMastro: Aside from representing the creativity, energy and relevance of greeting cards, we also think that “Street Pop” may appeal to younger, less established publishers.  The LOUIEs are a recognition and a celebration for all publishers and card makers – regardless of size – and we hope “Street Pop” will be a draw for some younger publishers.

Card Talk: What was it like when Viabella won a LOUIE Award?

DelMastro: It was really exciting – a recognition of what we do – and an acceptance of the great art created by our artists.  I’m proud that Viabella has won a number of LOUIEs over the years.   And of course it’s always interesting to see what gets nominated – there’s no “expected look” for any category.  I think that the recognition of winning a LOUIE – the brand recognition for the winning company — helps raise our profile with outside vendors and other publishers.

Card Talk: So when can companies submit entries?

DelMastro: The LOUIE Call for Entries opens on September 5; companies will receive a post card with all the details soon after that date.  And there are sponsorship opportunities available – including in-kind donations, which is a great way for GCA Associate members to get involved!  Contact for sponsorship opportunities.


For more information on the LOUIEs, contact Joseph Cox at or visit the GCA website’s LOUIEs information page.