Whether we holiday near or far most of us have succumbed to the lure of the postcard display stand and made our purchase to let our friends and family know we’re having a fabulous holiday and we wish they were here! Did you know the term for collecting postcards is Deltiology? It is derived from the Greek deltion which means writing tablet. It is thought to be amongst the largest of the collectable hobbies. Perhaps they are so popular because of the enormous range of subjects that postcards cover and thus collectors with different interests can include postcards in their collections. At tourist destinations all over the world we are never very far away from a postcard display stand.
Postcards are over a century old. The total number of places of interest, hobbies and significant events in our recent history ensure an overwhelming array to choose from. It is not just hobbyists who keep postcards, many of us hold on to them as reminders and keepsakes of countries to which we have travelled.
Postcards are a record of significant events and provide us with a visual reference of 100 years of history from the Royal Family to historic buildings and the change in our rural scenery – it is all there for us to behold and enjoy.
Although not a collector, I like old postcards. They are so evocative of times gone by. Romantic valentine postcards filled with hearts, flowers, cherubs, and endearing messages. Saucy seaside postcards with belly wobbling humour, double entendre and gaudy colours. Black and white railway postcards with magnificent steam engines hurtling through the countryside; you can almost hear the steam whistle. Places you remember from your childhood; which you explored for hidden treasures. Nostalgic Christmas scenes of children hanging stockings at the fireplace and hoping they’ve been good! Monochrome views of faraway lands that you long to visit. But, whatever your interest, there is probably a postcard that will appeal to you.
Artwork is another favourite of mine. Modern or classical, beautiful paintings and designs reproduced on a postcard, a miniature to take home at an affordable price. Some funky, loud and colourful, others just timeless in their appeal. They are ideal for short messages and greetings; I always have a small stock of my favourites. They are useful for homework projects and handmade cards and there is usually one stuck on the fridge or pin board, a loving message or friendly hello from someone you haven’t seen in a while. Of course, like most things postcards can now be purchased and sent via the internet. Thankfully, I think the appeal of selecting your postcard from the postcard display stand and posting to friends near and far will ensure they are around for many more years to come.
Nowadays, we can open up our laptop and a postcard wings its way through cyberspace, but I love the personal touch of sitting down and taking the time to write on the one chosen specifically for you from the postcard display stand.