Because it’s the third highest-grossing Holiday each year, it’s easy to continue to think of Valentine’s Day as it has been for centuries: a special day for couples in love. But there are some demographics The Trend Curve recommends you keep in mind before creating your next Valentine’s Day collection.
Firstly, over half of adult Americans today identify themselves as being single, having no specific partner. So, romantic love is not the only theme to focus on. The traditional table for two may well need to make room for the table for 10: large groups of Millennials who want to participate in Valentine’s Day celebrations, yet want the day to take on more of the all-inclusive feeling they remember from their grade-school days. It is also these single Millennials who are the biggest purchasers—not of Valentine’s Day cards—but of platonic gifts for this holiday. Greetings, too, are kept on the affectionate, but friends-only level. Think about “To my BFF” and “Thanks for being you!” Use of the word "love" tends to be more generic than romantic.
That table for 10 may also be made up of groups of singles of the same gender, taking the form of a ladies’ night or guys’ night-out on Valentine’s Day. This is usually the crowd for whom the letter X (the symbol for a Valentine’s kiss) primarily means X as in “ex-boyfriend”, ex-wife, etc. They’re often older and wiser than Millennials and they enjoy a bit of romantic cynicism, rather than anything too sentimental or sweet. For them it’s best to replace the traditional Valentine’s Day heart with big blossom-like shapes or round fan decorations. Or the hearts become playful. This group also prefers greeting-card messages that take their cue from famous break-up songs, like “What’s Love Got to do With It?” “Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places” and “Love Stinks!”
For both of these groups, the standard red color of Valentine’s Day should be replaced with white, pinks, metallics and even stripes in these colors.
No matter which Valentine’s Day celebrators you’re targeting, however, there is definitely a trend afoot to make this holiday more welcoming to those who want to commemorate love and friendship, even when it’s not at all romantic in nature.
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