Vintage cigarette cards

If you read my blog you’ll know I love popping in to my local charity shops. As much as I love to de-clutter and donate unwanted toys I also enjoy keeping an eye out for things on my hit list – vintage scrabble sets, old embroidered linens and Lego for my children.

I’m always happy to add wooden thread spools and haberdashery to my collection too so was pretty excited to find an old wooden darning mushroom and embroidery hoop on my latest trip. Next to them was an old cigar box which I also bought, purely for the advertising. Luckily for me it was full of old cigarette cards and a snip at 99p, you can see some pictures of it on my blog.

vintage cigarette cards

Cigarette cards were first introduced in the 1880s when a stiff card was inserted into the paper packs of cigarettes to strengthen the containers. It didn’t take long before someone decided to print pictures on them, encouraging people to collect sets of famous personalities, boats, cars, or film stars. The modern equivalent would be Moshi Monster sticker albums or Lego minifigs and it always amazes me how many duplicates I end up with when trying to collect a set. No wonder my cigar box is full of so many incomplete sets! The images are all quite male orientated – cars, trains, boats, footballers! However, I’m determined to make something lovely from them regardless.

So far I’ve thought of bunting and choosing some of my favourite images to feature on blank cards but there must be more ideas. I’m not quite sure what search terms to use on Pinterest as I haven’t found many inspiring images yet. In fact I’m too embarrassed to share a link to my Pinterest board which only features one cigarette card garland! Time to get my thinking cap on!

jenny gingerbread


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