Father’s Day brings a host of different gifts out on to the shop floor, some amusing, some practical and, according to some individuals and journalists, some that just perpetuate the myth of Fathers as beer swilling, footie watching, barbecue burning ‘blokes’.
So, we thought we’d have a brief look at the origins of Father’s Day and were surprised to find that records date back to 1910 when, to be honest, we all thought it was a more recent innovation.
It was, apparently, begun by an American Lady, Sonora Smart Dodd who, having heard a sermon about the celebration of Mothers Day (which started in 1909), wanted to honour her Father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran who brought up six children as a single parent.
It wasn’t until the 1930’s that the celebration really gathered pace, due largely to the fact that Miss Sonora was studying at the Art Institute of Chicago. However, when she returned home after her studies she once again started to promote it. This time she enlisted the support of trades organisations who retailed or manufactured what were traditionally thought of as gifts for Fathers in the 1930’s – neck ties, tobacco pipes and the like. It is easy to see now why every year we are tasked by our clients to come up with designs for retail ready displays that promote today’s ‘traditional’ Father’s Day gifts, the latest DVD’s and Blu-Ray’s or other presents aimed at Dad’s.
Happy Father’s Day to all those who are Fathers, and for those who are not Fathers and feel a bit left out – there is always International Men’s Day on November 19th.