A Brief History of the Greeting Card, Part 2

Find the first half here. By our very thortful guest contributor, @scottiepearce

Sir Henry Cole had set the trend for Christmas and Greeting cards, but this was halted as there was little production and methods of transport for the cards. This was later reinforced by the ‘Penny Post’ service in 1840.

Mass Production and Later years 

‘Penny Post’ public services began in 1840, and this meant that a much larger scope of people were able to send greetings cards. This was aided by the introduction of a railway in 1804, which made the transportation of cards much more efficient than previously when horse and cart was the only mode of transport.

The introduction of mass production of greeting cards came in 1875 when Louis Prang who was an American based German designer mass-produced cards in America, this made affordable cards for people who wanted to send one of the premium greeting cards.. The designs on the cards featured flowers, animals, plants, cultures and people. The creation of larger card designs promoted innovative designers to use their ideas to create cards as they understood that greeting cards could be used everyday as well as during those special occasions.

Handmade cards became very popular in the early 1900’s and were usually sent by hand as most of them were too delicate and fragile to send through the post, as they contained materials such as ribbon and foil .

Nowadays cards have many creative scenes on them, whether that be a joke for Birthday cards, Congratulations cards, Graduation cards, Easter cards, Get Well Soon Cards etc. The expansion of greeting cards has been enormous, with over 1.5 billion Christmas cards sent in America in 2010 and 678.9 million in the UK. This shows there is opportunity in the market for more innovative designers to create more innovative cards for all those interesting people.

Stay tuned for regular updates. If you miss us terribly, (understandable), hang out with us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook

10 ways people become more Thortful in a commuting crisis

On Tuesday night, two fatalities at Ealing Broadway meant that Paddington Station’s overground was shut down for around five hours. It woke us all from a rat race of frenetic energy at six o’clock on a Tuesday evening and forced us to do a bunch of crazy things like look, talk and be nice to each other. Shocking! Here’s the 10 things we noticed, which probably double as 10 ways being thortful could make our commuting lives easier.

1. People offered each other seats. If you’re on the train on a weekday at peak time you’re unlikely to be offered a seat unless you’re old, infirm or pregnant – not very thortful! With all the jostling and shoving that goes on during the commute you’re unlikely to give up a space, either. But on Tuesday night, when everyone piled into Paddington after a long day’s work only to find out we were stuck with each other for the next few hours, we all became a bit softer.

2. They looked at each other. This is pretty self explanatory.

3. They talked to each other. Five empty stand-still hours allowed us to do more than check our emails: phone calls were made to far and wide between people who hadn’t spoken since Christmas or New Year, from “don’t wait up tonight” to “I’m thinking of you”. Soon, we were communicating @nationalrailenq and @NetworkRailPAD travel updates to the rest of the carriage, which quickly turned into “So what do you do? And how was the rest of your day?”

4. They were nicer to service staff. It was a hairy situation all over the larger London stations, especially for the guys at the food chains. The queues swelled with no signs of abating, and orders were punched in at nerve shattering speed – but they pulled through. Even if there was a problem, the general response of the disgruntled commuters seemed to be “they’re doing the best they can in a bad situation.” Please and thank you were emphatic and meaningful, not rushed or habitual.

5. They helped each other with directions. Several people stood looking very lost at tube maps, before those of us in the know would eventually jump in and say “going to Reading? You want the Bakerloo line to Waterloo.”

6. They shared interests. A nice young man who offered me his seat on the commute was reading A Dance With Dragons by George R. R. Martin (the literary mother of Game of Thrones, if you didn’t know). We had a great, very geeky chat on book-to-screen adaptations to pass the time.

7. They were considerate of others. Chief among the groups of people in our thoughts were the rest of the guys at the office – some of the first phone calls, emails and texts were made back to work so we could all inform everyone to take a different route home. Though, one guy I was waiting next to did let his mate show up to Paddington for fun.

8. They appreciated the view. The greatest criticism I’ve heard of London from those who live outside it is that we never stop to appreciate anything. That head-down no-eye-contact attitude works when you’re desperate to get to and from work, but it is worth marvelling at the vastness of London architecture, and to look up and notice the different people around you.

9. They stayed in their lane. Okay, we addressed jostling and shoving earlier. There’s also armpit-pressing, swerving, jog-walking, and sighing heavily if the poor soul in front of you can’t wipe their Oyster card in 0.39 seconds or drops their luggage. Tuesday night, there were no such issues. Everyone seemed to collectively drop the attitude problem.

10. They were concerned about @FGW and @nationalrailenq staff. All jokes aside, the First Great Western and National Rail Staff (and everyone else who co-ordinated with them to smooth over the situation) did a great job under stressful circumstances. It was a good evening to thank them.

Our sympathies are with those affected by the recent deaths at Ealing Broadway.

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On: The Pipeline

macbook iphone tech blog

Happy Midweek, everyone!

We just wanted to share our excitement with our readers on the launch of the digital platform, coming Autumn 2015. We’re stoked for launch, and the entire team is putting in 100% to polish off the app for iOS, Android and Web. Including Buca.

Stick around for tidbits and blogs on all things Thortful – we promise we’ll get something more concrete to you as soon as we can. Though if you do miss us terribly (understandable), try following us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more regular updates. See you soon!

A Brief History of the Greeting Card, Part 1

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By our guest contributor, Scott Pearce.

The history of greeting cards dates back to the ancient Chinese, who would use greetings cards to exchange messages of happiness and good will for the Chinese New Year. Greeting Cards were also used in Ancient Egypt as well, with personal messages written on paper scrolls.

In the early 1400’s, paper cards made their way to Europe, with the first cards being those celebrating New Year. New Years woodcut cards were the first printed by the Germans, which soon was followed by Valentines Cards, which were being distributed and sent throughout Europe. However the only problem with greeting cards back then is they were expensive and seen as a premium. These premium greeting cards would be difficult to obtain and to coincide with this all the greeting cards would be sent by hand by the recipient, making this an even more painful task. The oldest ever-recorded greeting card still around today is showcased in the British Museum in London, which is a Valentines Card sent in the 1400’s.

Sir Henry Cole 

Sir Henry Cole was a famous designer known for the invention of the first commercial Christmas card in Victorian times in 1843. The release date for this card was coincidental as in the same year a fellow Victorian known as Charles Dickens wrote the famous tale ‘A Christmas Carol’, which inevitably became a huge success, as even nowadays it is one of the most famous Carols in history. The famous words of ‘Merry Christmas’ used within the novel are now on most christmas cards, and is of course a typical saying to greet people around Christmas time.

Sir Henry’s card, designed by John Callcott Horsely, convey three generations of a family toasting the card’s recipient with scenes of charity work and helping of the poor which was displayed on the outer edge of the card.

This invention by Sir Henry has been used for hundreds of years, and still plays a vital role in society today with billions of cards sent every year all around the globe. Cole’s Christmas card has set the trend for innovative designers all over the world to create their own cards and become thortful people.

Check in soon for Part 2!

Image by Robert Galbraith for Reuters’ “Our World Now”. Taken during a victory parade for the World Series Champions, the San Francisco Giants in San Francisco, California. We do love ourselves a good excuse to throw a ‘congratulations for the win’ party.