Whenever you need to wish your friend or acquaintances happy and belated birthday, or wish your near and dear ones merry Christmas, or send your beloved one happy valentines day wishes or simply say hello or offer a “get well soon” message to your bosom friend , you only go to a greetings card outlet or visit an online greetings card website and send the required card. Have you ever wondered what greetings card is about and how did it originate. If you have the desire to know, this article is for you.
So, lets begin with what’s a greeting card. Originally, greeting cards derive from postcards ( which are single sided minus the fold ) and are an illustrated, folded card usually featuring a note of greeting or other sentiment beautiful wishes. They can be either printed or handmade. Now, with the advent of Internet though, virtual greetings cards have evolved which doesnot fit to the above-mentioned definition.
Although greetings cards are generally given on special occasions such as for example birthdays, Christmas or other holidays, they are also sent on ‘non-occasions’ to say ‘hello’ or ‘thank you’ ;.They are manufactured and/or hand-made by hundreds of companies big and small. Hallmark Cards and American Greetings are the biggest producers of greeting cards in the U.S. It’s the UK, where more cards per head are sent than every other nation. The UK continues as a world leader in this area, as well as leading the world in the region of greeting card design.
What laid the foundation for the greeting card industry and when and how did it all began ?
The custom of sending greeting cards could be traced back again to the ancient Chinese, who exchanged messages of good will to celebrate the New Year, and to early Egyptians, who conveyed their greetings on papyrus scrolls.
By early 1400s, handmade paper greeting cards were being exchanged in Europe. The Germans are known to own printed New Year’s greetings from woodcuts as early as 1400, and handmade paper Valentines were being exchanged in differing of Europe in early to mid-1400s.
However, by the 1850s, the greeting card had been transformed from a comparatively expensive, handmade and hand-delivered gift to a well known and affordable means of personal communication, due largely to advances in printing and mechanization.
This trend continued, fuelled by new trends like Christmas cards, the first which appeared in published form in London in 1843 when Sir Henry Cole hired artist John Calcott Horsley to create any occasion card that he could send to his friends and acquaintances. Technical developments like color lithography in 1930 propelled the manufactured greeting card industry forward.
Throughout the 1980s the trend began to show, with consumers increasing searching for greeting cards which were differentiated from the standard offering. In the late 1990s industry was clearly beginning to separate into three different segments: