Did you know that the Christmas card is a British invention?
The first one was sent in 1843 and it is likely that the publishing on the 19th December 1843 of Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’ played a part in the idea of sending Christmas cards eventually being adopted as something to do. They weren’t an instant success and the book wasn’t an instant money maker for Dickens. Look at how it all turned out.
Think back over the years, which Christmas cards that you’ve received stand out in your mind?
If you think about Christmas cards or cards you receive on any other occasion, whose name jumps into your mind because they send the best cards ever?
The few cards that I can remember all have one thing in common.
They were hand made at home.
There is a link below to a design for a card that is a string of coloured lights, each light is a child’s fingerprint; how wonderful to receive that from someone close to you! A hand made card carries so much more than the written message within and it gladdens sender and receiver.
We often focus on activities for children, things to do with them, to keep them occupied but there are countless adults who love their craftwork and make stunning cards.
Embroidered cards (World War One soldiers created these and sent them home), stencils, stickers, embossing, watercolours… the list and options seem endless. This all takes me back to Blue Peter and days of sticky back plastic! Your imagination can take you wherever you let it go.
I love looking for memorable cards in the shops and so many charities benefit from purchases of Christmas cards. Don’t let this challenge take your focus away from such things.
Do think about who may really appreciate something truly personal, unleash your inner crafter and most of all have fun.
Let us know how you get on, share with us on social media (you’ll find links on the right hand side of this page or at the bottom on mobile). We’d love to hear from you, to see some pictures and by all means share ideas for next year. We already have a growing list we couldn’t fit into this challenge.
V & A The first Christmas card
CBeebies Make your own Christmas cards
Yes, for some countries, the 7th December may already be too late but don’t let that stop you because it will be special whenever it arrives.