Sunday, 13 December 2015


Yesterday, I shared an image of a Victorian Christmas card featuring rabbits riding penny farthings. Today, I'd like to show you a more 'typical' design of a child enjoying winter pursuits.

Copyright Michelle Higgs

Here we have a young girl with her dog skating on the ice (probably a frozen river or lake), complete with a very stylish muff! This card is a typical design from the late 1860s and early 1870s; it has a scalloped edge and it's relatively small, about the same size as a visiting card that the Victorians left at people's houses to show they had called.

By the 1880s, children made up a good proportion of the target market so it was very common to see Christmas card designs featuring children. As mentioned yesterday, Victorian toy shops were one of the types of retail outlet which sold Christmas cards.

At first, Victorian Christmas cards were completely different from modern versions because they weren't folded; they were flat and the sender wrote a message on the reverse. It was not until the 1890s that the folded card became popular.


  1. "Children made up a good proportion of the target market"... target to buy and send the cards? or to be the recipients? If as recipients, were there any images of little boys?

  2. Hi, thanks for your comment. Victorian children were both senders of cards and recipients. And yes, there were lots of cards with designs of boys, as well as boys and girls together. I just don't seem to have very many! See eBay or this link for some examples: