The big 2013 Christmas Card Audit
I did this for the first time last year, and that means I can be all uber-geeky and do like-for-like comparisons. I have further subdivided the themes to throw further light on what Christmas means in the minds of the people who make Christmas cards, and the people who buy them.
(Of course, it's not a truly scientific sample as it's based only on the people who gave us Christmas cards. If you're one of them, thank you.)
Total number of Christmas cards: 97 (last year's figure: 104)
Hand-made / home-produced cards: 7 (6) plus two designed by kids and printed by schools
Cards with magnets on: sadly none (last year: 1)
Cards sold in aid of charity: 44 (42)
Traidcraft cards: 5 (down from 6 last year)
Oxfam cards: None (2 last year)
Main charity represented: Diabetes UK with 5 cards.
Total number of charities represented: 62 (up from 40 last year). This includes one card that raised funds for 30 different charities.
Marks and Spencer cards (new category): 12
Religious-themed cards: 33 (down from 37)
Cards featuring the Nativity: 15
The following Christmas story 'characters' appeared on cards too:
Three kings: 5 (down from 9)
The shepherds: 4 (up from 2)
The star of Bethlehem: 2 (up from 1)
Other themes (new categories asterisked)
'Peace': 2 (down from 4)
Santa: 10 (compared to 6 in 2012) plus one that was just several Santa hats
Penguins: 3 (down from 5)
Various cartoon bears: 2 (down from 12 bears in 2012)
Dogs in Santa Hats: None this year! (2 last year)
*Christmas decorations: 4
*Christmas trees: 5
*Winter scene/scenery: 7
Cards that mention 'Christmas' on the front: 35 (down from 45)
Like last year, many of the religious-themed cards don't mention Christmas on the front.
So, that's it. Fewer cards, but more charity fundraising cards - aren't our friends lovely - with a mix of themes. A third have a religious theme and a third mention 'Christmas' on the front, with some overlap, but still the religious elements of the midwinter holiday haven't quite faded away.