Here is my little goody to share and a little lesson too. I got this fantastic book of Victorian clip art from my good friend Janice in Texas. I haven't done much with Victorian style images, and so I started doing a little research. What I found has entertained me for weeks - here are a few tidbits about Valentines in the Victorian era!
- Handmade Valentines were HUGELY popular in the Victorian Era (1830-1901) - so much so that they were more of a big deal in their time than Christmas cards. The people of Victorian times would spend hours, even days. . . and sometimes a small fortune making these very special cards for their loved ones. New technology during this time - like beautiful embossed and sanded papers, colorful lithographs from Europe, and fancy calligraphy were all beautiful parts of these early hand made cards! Victorian Valentines were such a big deal that it was common for ladies to recieve one as the means of a marraige proposal. . . elaborate Valentines that were several inches thick were sometimes given in boxes along with gifts like gloves, pressed flowers, or if you really wished to show someone your affection, you included a lock of your own hair!
- Girls made Valentines for their sisters. Mothers made Valentines for their children, and young men made them for ladies who were the object of their desire. It was not considered to be proper for a young single lady to make a Valentine for a man - but if she recieved several, she might have to choose which suitor's Valentine was the best! There are tales of ladies sending Valentines to their husbands who were gone to war - and of sailors making Valentines for their wives using sea shells and coral. What a fantastic likening to our cause at Operation Write Home!
- I spent a lot of time pondering the other materials of the time - Victorian Valentines would have been made from pieces of tissue, exquisite lace, satin ribbons. . . I found references to the use of balsa wood, feathers, beads, gems and gold leaf. . . a card makers' stash of supplies must have rivaled what we have available even today! Oh what I would give to travel back in time to see some of these things! Victorian Valentines could include pop-ups, spinning parts, birds' wings that flutter - a mirror in the center to reflect the face of the recipient, and verses and sentiments - lovingly penned in a time when penmanship was considered to be in itself, a work of art.
A little blog candy: leave me a comment today if you have enjoyed your stay and in return I will choose randomly one winner to get a Victorian Valentine Kit. Be sure to leave me a way to contact you via blog or email. Due to cost I will only be able to provide shipping within the USA.
Now off you go Boni's page - Dude Time Doodles!!! . . . and thank you for stopping by!
If you have a moment, stop here to see some more examples of some beautiful Victorian cards. The Candice Hern website itself is amazing, I could spend forever just reading and learning . . .