Americans Will 'Love' Cards this Valentine's Day
GDA Staff -- Gifts & Dec, January 21, 2013
WHITE PLAINS, NY - Love is in the air this year. The Greeting Card Association (GCA) estimates that more than 145 million cards will be purchased in the U.S. for this year's Valentine's Day.
The second-largest holiday for giving greeting cards follwoing Christmas, the GCA predicts a stronger Valentine's Day card sending season since a big Christmas card sending season just ended. In addition to the strong Christmas card season, more valentines tend to be exchanged when the holiday occurs on a weekday, which will happen again this year, according to the GCA, with February 14 falling on a Thursday.
"As Valentine's Day approaches, consumers will again descend on the greeting card aisle in search of the perfect expression of love or friendship - whether romantic, sweet, funny or risqué," said Susan January, president, GCA and vice president of Leanin' Tree. "There is something for everyone when shopping for Valentine's Day, as children, grandparents and everyone in between are selecting the cards that will be the perfect expression of love for the special people they care for most."
Some popular design trends this year include humorous images; animals such as owls and cats; French motifs; handcrafted cards with attachments such as gems and bows; cards that express love without specifically saying "Happy Valentine's Day"; and square-shaped cards. (The latter may be a reflection of the fact that more Valentine's Day cards are exchanged in person rather than mailed since square cards generally require additional postage).
More neutral or masculine color palettes are also available for men as opposed to the traditional red and pink options. Valentine's Day cards will also feature more unique and engaging innovations, such as sound and motion, that make them more interactive and enhance the "keepsake factor."
Valentine greetings have been exchanged since the Middle Ages in Europe. In 1850, Esther Howland, an American printer and artist, was among the first to publish and sell Valentine's Day cards in the U.S.
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