The History of Monogramming

Monogramming is a fabulous art that in modern day has come to be a classic for any preppy girl or anyone wanting to display their initials on clothing or goods, but have you ever wondered how the art of the monogram came to be? A monogram is a custom motif created by overlapping or combining two or more letters to become one symbol that serves as a recognizable logo for an individual or in traditions steeped in history, a monarchy. 

Monograms first appeared on coins in ancient history as early as 350 B.C. The earliest examples come from the Greek cities who issued coins with the first two letters of a city's name. This would lend great understanding of the modern day sorority girl's love of the monogram! The use of initials as a branding was then adapted by artists and craftsmen to identify their custom creations and paintings. 

Monograms became a symbol of status and luxury when they were taken to represent a monarchy. Used as part of an insignia of the names of the Royal families were interwoven into the kingdom and those who served it. Representatives of the government were required to sport the custom monogram of the Royal family in power. It indicated the connection to the ruler. It is important to note that a custom royal monogram usually appeared with a crown representing the power it displayed. Countries who have employed this initial recognition include Great Britain, Russia, Sweden and Germany. Today, several Danish coins still carry the insignia created centuries ago. It is of interest to note that in Thailand royal monograms appear on the individual flag for each major royal family member. 

An individual's custom monogram is often a very fancy logo used for adorning onto stationery, clothing for women, bed linens and in modern day has come to be able to be applied to just about anything. A traditional 3-letter monogram used the initial of the person's last name larger in the center, preceded by the first initial of the individual's first name and lastly on the right appears the middle letter representing the middle name. For example, if the person's name is Catherine Sarah Richardson, the letters would appear as with the R appearing slightly larger in the center. 

how to enter arrange a monogram

Married or engaged couples may use a two or three letter monogram with their entwined initials on wedding invitations and items being embroidered for their new home. It has become a widely popular practice in modern day to give monogrammed wedding gifts to couples displaying the newly married monogram. Etiquette for monogramming for a married couple varies according to the item being personalized. Linens, guest towels, bed linens, shower curtains, pillow shams, and sheets generally receive a monogram with the woman's first initial followed by the couple's shared surname and lastly followed by the man's first initial.  It has become customary in modern days to display the couple's new monogram at the wedding reception onto an item that can be placed in the newlywed's home as a keepsake for years to come. 

Another widespread use of the monogram is also in display on children's clothing and gifts. An embroidered dress on a little girl is simply a classic for any day of the week or for having a timeless photograph taken. Little boys in Jon Jons with initials are a great option for everyday wear or fit enough for a ring bearer on the wedding day! Being that the tradition of the monogram is steeped in such history dating back to Royal heritage fit enough for a king, it is surely fit for little boys for their Sunday clothing. 

A popular way to welcome a new infant to a family is with monogrammed baby gifts. An embroidered baby blanket with the child's initials is a classic treasure. For traditional gifts, an engraved silver gift or a personalized stuffed bunny with a name on the ear is sure to be loved for years to come. Layette sets and personalized bibs and burp cloth sets are always a favorite. 

The Pink Giraffe is committed to bringing you the best in classic and timeless monogrammed gifts for any occasion. We specialize in high quality, luxurious gifts, and linens for the upscale home.