|Irises at St Remy - Vincent Van Gogh|
For instance, now that I’ve just passed my 70th birthday, I’ve found myself doing a radical re-think about how a seventy-year old should be – from how to dress without coming across as ‘mutton dressed as lamb’, to whether I’m spending my time ‘appropriately’ when most of my contemporaries have long since ‘retired’.
Another question that has keeps cropping up in my mind since I’ve been creating greeting cards is: why does it seem to be universally accepted that you can’t give a man a card with flowers on?
|Water Lilies - Claude Monet|
Is it that men don’t like flowers? I think not!
- Many of our ‘celebrity’ gardeners enthuse about flowers as much as their female counterparts. (And my Dad used to grow Sweet Williams, his favourite flower, on his allotment.)
|Percy Thrower was THE authority on gardening when I was growing up|
- And just think of the number of famous painters who have painted flowers, from Redoute and his roses to Monet and Manet and Gustave Klimt!
|Peonies in a Vase - Edouard Manet|
Ah, but they were a special case, they were artists, so they don’t count. Ordinary men don’t like flowers.
- Not true. ‘Ordinary’ men have worn flowery clothes at various times in the past – just look at these 18th century buttons for a man’s waistcoat!
- And there are certainly plenty of floral prints in evidence in menswear departments at the moment! I'm not saying I like this one, but it seems to be quite acceptable! (I don't suppose I'd like it on a woman either!)
The evidence does seem to suggest that men do like flowers!
|Garden Path with Chickens - Gustav Klimt|
And gentlemen, how would you feel if you were on the receiving end of one?
I’ve talked this over with friends and there was general agreement that finding suitable greeting cards for men was a real challenge. It seems we aren’t yet ready to take the risk!
Luckily, I’ve managed to come up with plenty of ideas for cards for men and boys that don’t have a flower in sight. And, of course, they are some of my bestsellers!
for just a small selection
I've added lots more since I wrote this blog post, in 2010!