Trying hard to find an upbeat story to cheer you up, I’ve gone back to the tried-and-tested February formula of romance, brightening a cold February with the heat of postcard passion. For the collector, there is no shortage of material to alight on, and it’s mostly in the budget price bracket. Pride of place goes to the various designs aimed at St Valentine’s Day, which typically featured Cupid and hearts.
Every four years, February also marked leap year; a tougher prospect for publishers because of limited sales. Some of them, including the ever-innovative Martin Anderson (Cynicus) merely overprinted existing romantic cards with the two words, a cheaper option! Aside from these two anniversaries, romance on postcards in comic and sentimental form was all the rage in Edwardian Britain, feeding an insatiable public demand for images of love, the early-20th century equivalent of television bodice-rippers.
Romantic postcards can be found enhanced with messages written in code to avoid the prying eyes of the postman or postwoman, and a code developed as to the exact nature of a message, which was indicated by the angle at which the stamp was placed. It all makes for a collection that can be built up using an amazing range of cards designed by a multiplicity of artists.
Article by Brian Lund