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Cynla Crafts Hudson Valley-Inspired Greeting Cards and Stationery

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Cynla’s designs are available on Etsy and at Hudson Valley retailers.  All photos courtesy of Cindy LaColla

Up your greeting card game this holiday season with the majestic naturescapes of Hudson Valley-based illustrator Cindy LaColla.

Nothing beats receiving a thoughtful card in the mail. As the internet has broadened our ability to communicate swiftly and easily, the hand-written missive has become something of a lost art. And even if you do decide to share your thoughts with a loved one via snail mail, choosing the right card can be overwhelming—and expensive.

cynla

Enter Cindy LaColla, the born-and-bred Hudson Valleyite who shares her artistic acumen in the form of greeting cards and stationery. Her brand, Cynla, sells dozens of designs for all occasions including birthdays, holidays, and major milestones. While a garden-variety greeting card at Hallmark or Target can run you up to $15, a Cynla card costs just $5 on Etsy—and it ships directly to you for free.

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Having grown up around the scenic landscapes of the Hudson Valley, it’s no surprise that LaColla’s designs are rooted in nature. “I draw a lot of my cards in the Hudson Valley,” she says. “I like drawing outside, but there isn’t a lot of sitting still with two kids on a hike, so I take a lot of pictures and draw later.” She feels particularly inspired by local sites like Chadwick Lake, Minnewaska State Park Preserve, Mohonk Preserve, and Beacon’s waterfront.


LaColla assembles her fantastical scenes with creatures native to our area alongside magical beings and exotic animals. One card, which LaColla designed with her six-year-old daughter, features a castle and moat inhabited by a dragon, jellyfish, and owls. “I taught her Procreate [a digital illustration software] and I can no longer draw in peace on my iPad,” says LaColla. “She wants to hog it. A future greeting card designer in the making.”

You can purchase Cynla cards via Etsy or at 750-plus retailers nationally and internationally. Hudson Valley vendors include:

Artique, Albany
Barner Books, New Paltz
Beehive Designer Collective, Mt. Kisco
Blue Fox Bookshop, Walden
Bunbury’s Coffee Shop, Piermont
By the Way Bakery, Hastings-on-Hudson
Dancing Tulip Floral Boutique, Saugerties
Fishkill Farms, Hopewell Junction
The Gift Hut, Cold Spring
Herzogs, Kingston
Merrily Paper, Sugar Loaf
Mohonk Mountain House, New Paltz
Nature’s Pantry, New Windsor
Norma’s, Wappingers Falls
Reservoir & Wood, Cold Spring

LaColla has reams upon reams of cards for sale this holiday season, and anticipates releasing new designs in the near future. “I pour a lifetime of memories into my designs,” LaColla reflects. “I love hearing people say, ‘Someone gave me this card, and it means so much to me.’”

Related: The Hudson Valley Is a Top Place to Visit in the U.S. in 2023

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