Embroidered Silk Christmas Postcard

Silk Postcard

A heartfelt souvenir to be sent home from a serving soldier during World War One was an embroidered silk postcard. These postcards were blank cards with a piece of intricately hand embroidered piece of silk attached to it. Popular with British soldiers these postcards were sent home along with a letter to loved ones back in Britain.

Very fragile in nature they often have no writing on them, this is because they were thought to be so special they were usually posted with an accompanying letter, so they carried no pen marks on them. The example at Bodmin Keep however, has a message to a Mother & Father ‘with love and best wishes, from Henry’  

Sewn in domestic houses in France and Belgium as ‘out work’ by civilians and by Belgium refuges in the UK. Then once sewn they would be sent to Paris for assembly into the cards and distributed to shops. They would have been quite an investment for the soldier to send home to his loved ones.

Designs tended to be patriotic and sentimental showcasing some brightly coloured silk threads. Some also carry designs of regimental cap badges.

Silk postcards were also sent during the Second World War, but the ones in circulation around 1930-40 tend to have a more muted colour palette and a scalloped or crimped edge than the First World War varieties. There were also factory woven cards which were more complex in their images of important buildings in France or Belgium.