Though just a scootch late for the famous nuptials of Ellen and Portia, Hallmark has rolled out a new line of greetings, created for just such an occasion. In response to California ruling gay marriage legal, Hallmark saw a fancy card niche to be filled — one that doesn't involve shiny embossed images of a traditional bride and groom. Despite the fact that most states don't recognize gay marriage (CA and MA are the only two) several others recognize civil commitments, and when there's a ceremony, there's a cause for card.
Hallmarks says the decision to offer the greetings was not politically motivated, but rather a response to consumer demand. Their spokeswoman says, "it's our goal to be as relevant as possible to as many people as we can." Indeed they started offering "coming out" cards last year (an event that strikes me as more interesting? I did not know one gave a card for such an occasion!) The new cards contain neutral language, speaking to love rather than a specific event so they're useful for weddings or commitments. Four designs in all will be released this summer.
As 85,000 same-sex couples have become legal in one way or another since 1997 and estimates peg nearly 120,000 more will join Ellen, spelling millions in new business for wedding industries. Is this just smart marketing? Hallmark has already expanded to include cards for "sorry you can't get pregnant," and "good luck in rehab," as well as interfaith marriages — because in greetings, it's the specificity that counts?