Hello, everybody! Gosh, can you believe that it's time for Christmas again? Welcome to our 25 Days Of Christmas, and today we're talking about something everybody knows about but probably hasn't thought about much--Christmas cards!
The first commercially produced Christmas cards were commissioned in 1843 by Sir Henry Cole of London, and showed a family drinking wine and celebrating. Because there was a small child in the picture, this was considered controversial, but the idea caught on. The price was right, too--one shilling each! But most early Christmas cards, however, didn't show winter or religious scenes, or even Santa Claus. Instead they showed scenes of fairies or flowers to remind everyone of the oncoming season of Spring. Even more popular were humorous scenes of animals and children, as well as very elaborate shaped and decorated cards. In 1875, Louis Prang introduced Christmas cards to America, and they caught on quickly.
Throughout the 20th century, Christmas cards proved to be very profitable for many stationery manufacturers, and card design continuously evolved with changing tastes and new printing techniques. During the World Wars, many Christmas cards were patriotic in theme. Nostalgic, sentimental, and religious themes are still very popular, and even today, many people who want to send old-style Victorian and Edwardian cards, like the early Christmas cards, can still do so.
Today, technology has changed the Christmas card somewhat. Many retailers such as Hallmark offer a line of e-cards that can be sent through email, and these often have animated images and little video games. Some websites even offer such cards for free! But the Christmas card made of paper that is sent in an envelope still continues to be popular; in 2005, 1.9 billion cards were sent in the U.S.!
So the next time you see a Christmas card, think about sending a few out. If you're raised on technology, it might seem silly, but as we monsterkind know, sometimes "Zer Old Vays" do turn out to be the best! Merry Christmas, everybody!
See you tomorrow for more of The MonsterGrrls' 25 Days Of Christmas!
POST-MORTEM: Our images are from Emotions Greeting Cards, who have webpages about the history of Christmas cards and several galleries of old-style cards for all holidays, including Christmas and Halloween! Click here to view and read!