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How cute are these cards? (Image: Katherine Dietz / Hello June Prints)<p></p>

Seattle illustrator creates 'quarantine postcards' you can send to loved ones

Katherine Dietz is used to creating greeting cards, but her latest series is a bit different.

When thinking about a close friend turning 30 this month, the Seattle-based illustrator and graphic designer didn't think a "normal" birthday card sufficed.

Right now, we can't be close to one another; events are canceled, bars are closed — celebrating is done via Zoom or FaceTime. It's not ideal, but it's our new reality for the time being.

"My group of friends is turning 30, people are getting married. It's all canceled," Dietz, 29, said. "I wanted these cards to acknowledge 'hey, this sucks, but I am thinking of you.'"

Dietz's six original postcard designs can be used to celebrate birthdays, thank healthcare workers or simply send some love — one card also features a shoutout to postal workers.

[Artist of the Week: Ayleen Wood]

Her original design pictures a group of people with the words "sending you a socially distanced hug and so much love." A 6-foot tape measure encircles each pair in the shape of a heart.

"There are all kinds of people who are missing different people," Dietz said. "You can still send love even though we can't physically be close."

People can buy the cards through her Etsy shop, Hello June Prints, and Dietz will do the rest. She will include a handwritten note and send it off to reduce contact and exposure.

She hopes these cards help people feel connected.

"Everything just seems so heavy and sad, and I wanted to do something to bring happiness and joy," Dietz said. "It always makes me feel special to (get something) in the mail."

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