There are a gazillion reasons to send a “thinking of you” card to someone. Maybe they’re going through something hard—or something great. Or you miss them. Or you just heard a song you used to sing on road trips. Or maybe you just want to make them smile. This little card has delivered that message more than 30 million times, making it America’s all-time best seller.
Around here, we call it the Pansy Card.
Hallmark artist Dorothy Kelly Mainschien based her original watercolor painting on a little porcelain cart filled with real pansies. It first appeared on a Mother’s Day card in 1939, then came back as a thinking-of-you card in 1941, with new copy by Mary Beth Greenwood:
To Let You Know
Pansies always stand for thoughts—
At least that’s what folks say,
So this just comes to show my thoughts
Are there with you today.
It’s been in stores ever since. This year, creative director Holly W. and her team are giving it a few upgrades: new paper stock, embossed details and foil-stamped lettering.
“When we’re updating a card from another era, we ensure colors are fresh and vibrant, and the styling and messages reflect the way people currently express themselves,” Holly tells us.
But its simple message and hand-painted image mean the Pansy Card hasn’t needed big revamps: “Certain creative elements are timeless and will always resonate with people,” Holly says.
Samantha B., historian in the Hallmark Archives, agrees. “One of the reasons for the card’s unwavering popularity is versatility of the sentiment. It can be used for any occasion from general friendship and birthday to sympathy.”
As proof, she tells a story that appeared in Fortune magazine in the late 1950s: “Two men entered Hallmark headquarters and asked the receptionist for a card to console a friend who was about to be executed in the Missouri state penitentiary. They were offered the Pansy Card and left Hallmark satisfied.”
Like we said: A gazillion reasons.
What are your reasons for sending someone a “thinking of you” message? We’d love to hear them in the comments!