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Making It

Make Your Name Into A Jingle With Music Box Business Cards

Twirling plastic ballerina not included.

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The business card has already seen its heyday—and that heyday was likely linked to a bunch of CEOs scraping girthy, celebratory lines of cocaine off a boardroom table following a stock tip on some exciting new company called Enron.

Color printing couldn’t save it. Vertical orientation couldn’t save it. And, maybe worst of all, bumping two iPhones together couldn’t save it (also, you owe me a new phone). But as business cards filter through culture from ubiquitous to creepy-cult-leader status, we may experience some of their best ideas, like a comedian so contented to career failure that he starts saying all those hilarious, offensive things that he really thinks.


These music box business cards, designed by Katharina Hölzl and composed by Ritornell’s Richard Eigner, are the kind of wide-eyed idea that business cards are ripe to exploit. Each card is punctured with various shapes. And when fed through a tiny cranked music box, the card plays its own unique tune.

"The punched triangles and circles will play back melodies and chords in a C major pentatonic scale," Eigner explains. "The tricky part was to get the laser milling and spacing just right and to find the best possible paper. It was quite a long process to design it."

It’s like a custom ringtone that’s charming, the perfect kind of Easter egg to make business cards the sort of thing you were obsessed with collecting (and a lot more fun than tiresome, it’s-really-just-a-URL, QR codes).

So you grab the bone paper; I’ll gut some of my sister’s old jewelry boxes. Let’s make some music.

[Hat tip: fubiz]

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