Paper Valentine’s Cards
What would Valentine’s Day be without paper Valentine’s cards? Valentine’s Day greetings have been documented since the 15th century, when the first known letters to mention the day were written.
In the early 18th century, handmade paper Valentine’s Day cards made their first appearance. A labor of love, these cards often were elaborately decorated with paper flowers, intricate drawings, puzzles and poetry. By the end of the century, elaborate pre-printed cards made their first appearance, although they were quite expensive to buy for many more years.
In the Victorian era, industrialization and printing technology advances, as well as improvements in the postal service, lowered costs and enabled the mass production and exchange of Valentine’s cards. And in 1913, Hallmark produced its first card for the holiday, marking a major shift in the commercialization of the holiday.
When you exchange Valentine’s Day cards, whether you make or buy them, you’re continuing a centuries-long tradition of expressing your love through paper.