Become profitable amassing Christmas playing cards


Nadia Krige

twenty second Dec 2023

Studying Time: 4 minutes

Christmas playing cards are a dying social courtesy. With digital communication providing fast and simple alternate options, it’s actually no shock.

For the extra sentimental amongst us, this could possibly be a reasonably unhappy state of affairs. Nevertheless, in case you’ve been hanging on to every Christmas card you’ve ever obtained, and possibly even safeguarding these of earlier generations, you may be sitting on high of a miniature goldmine!

As Christmas playing cards turn out to be more and more novel, so their worth grows.

Let’s check out methods you may make cash from amassing Christmas playing cards.


How Christmas playing cards grew to become a factor

Make money collecting Christmas cards

Maybe the very best place to begin our investigation is to go proper again to the very starting.

Though it could seem to be Christmas playing cards have all the time been round, they actually solely date again to the 1800s.

The primary ever Christmas card was created within the UK in 1843 by London-based illustrator John Calcott Horsley on behalf of Sir Henry Cole. Horsley designed and hand-coloured the unique, after which a complete of 1,000 had been lithographed. These playing cards had been offered at a shilling every.

The cardboard exhibits a Christmas dinner with three generations of a household having fun with a Christmas occasion. The aspect panels present charitable scenes with individuals clothes and feeding the poor. Solely 12 of the unique 1,000 playing cards nonetheless in existence.


The costliest Christmas playing cards on the earth

Make money collecting Christmas cards

Unsurprisingly, each their rarity and historic significance has made these playing cards extraordinarily useful.

In November 2001, Horsley’s unique hand-coloured Christmas card – the prototype upon which the 1,000 lithographed copies had been primarily based – was offered at public sale in Devizes for £20,000 and purchased by an nameless bidder. Cole had despatched this precise Christmas card to his grandmother. It additionally holds the Guinness World Record for the costliest greeting card ever offered at public sale.

In fact, this isn’t the one Christmas card that’s ever made its technique to public sale.

Earlier this yr, a bunch of 15 Christmas card designs by Salvador Dalí had been put up for public sale. The playing cards had been commissioned by the Spanish pharmaceutical laboratory Hoechst Ibérica between 1959 and 1976. They had been anticipated to boost as much as €1m at Artcurial’s Trendy and Impressionist Artwork public sale in Paris.

Unsurprisingly, Christmas playing cards with a royal historical past additionally are likely to rake in kilos. In 2017, assortment of 35 playing cards despatched by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh over a 40-year interval had been offered at public sale for £1,530.


Find out how to determine useful Christmas playing cards

Make money collecting Christmas cards

Now, the probabilities that you’ve got one among Horsley’s unique 1,000 lithographed Christmas playing cards in your possession are slim. And so are the probabilities that you’ve got any designed by different well-known artists or despatched by the royal household.

Nevertheless, this doesn’t imply that your assortment is devoid of worth.

Right here are some things that would spell large bucks relating to previous Christmas playing cards:


Since vacation and birthday playing cards are thought-about by most to be nothing greater than sentimental ephemera, it’s commonplace for them to finish up within the trash as soon as festivities are over. Which suggests it’s terribly onerous to seek out actually, actually previous Christmas playing cards.

If, nonetheless, you observed that there is likely to be a pair gathering mud in your storeroom, go have a little bit of a rummage.

Clearly, the older the specimen the extra useful it is going to be.


One other large determiner of worth is how well-preserved the Christmas card in query is. When you’ve got one relationship again to 1890, but it surely’s torn and pale, the probability of it bringing in any cash is near zero.

If nonetheless, the cardboard has been saved rigorously, protected against any doable harm and nonetheless seems as pristine because the day it arrived on the mantlepiece, chances are you’ll simply be in luck!


What’s on the cardboard? If it’s an unique art work by a reasonably to extremely profitable artist (who is aware of – possibly your nice grandparents had been well-connected), the cardboard could be of curiosity to collectors.

One other factor to pay attention to on the quilt of the cardboard in query is whether or not it depicts an historic occasion or fashionable character. Examples of the previous might embody something alluding to one of many World Wars, whereas the latter might maybe come within the type of traditional, classic illustrations of anybody from Santa Clause to Mickey Mouse.

What’s inside

Lastly, even when the well-preserved outdoors is considerably unremarkable, the within could also be the place the magic lies.

When you’ve got a Christmas card with an ink-on-paper movie star signature, its worth is sort of positive to shoot up. In fact, there’s additionally a hierarchy to think about right here. When you’ve got one signed by Queen Elizabeth herself, it’s in all probability fairly a bit extra useful than one bearing the signature of your native radio station’s host.


The place to purchase and promote

Tickled by the concept of earning money from Christmas playing cards? We propose you begin your profession on eBay!

It’s fairly simple to arrange an account and also you’ll even have full management over your auctions and gross sales.

At present, vintage Christmas cards are promoting from something between £0.50 and £539.12.

Upon getting your foot within the door and your assortment begins rising, chances are you’ll need to examine which auctioneers might enable you discover the very best bidders in your collections.

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