So these stamps are out, or are scheduled to come out very shortly. Sorry that I can't get all that excited about them because snooooooooooooooze. Mind you, I'm not saying these aren't important subjects. They certainly are and they deserve to be on stamps, but boy are they boring. The Medal of Honor stamps get a pass because they are part of a series that all look like that (and can arguably be used to quite a striking effect.) I hope some of you like them, but they really don't do it for me.
Stamps! Stamps! Stamps! Lots of stamps are coming out right now. Yesterday saw the release of a stamp honoring Maya Angelou. I am so conflicted with this stamp. I love Maya Angelou and her smile is divine, but the design of this stamp is so boring to me. I suppose it fits the typical portrait style of U.S.P.S. stamps, but I wanted something more from it. To me, it lacks in poetry, in a metaphorical sense; as it does literally contain a line of poetry. The dreamer in me wishes there was some sort of scannable code aspect to it where you could hear audio of Maya Angelou reading her work. Her voice is like an all-encompassing hug.
For the war stamp fans, there's a new edition in the Civil War set. This two stamp set includes a stamp for the Battle of Five Forks and the Appomattox Courthouse. It is the final installment in the 150th Anniversary commemorative series. These stamps will be officially issued on April 9th.
At the end of this stamp release parade on Friday, April 10th, the Gifts of Friendship stamps come out. This issue celebrates the friendship between the U.S. and Japan and features cherry blossoms and dogwood trees. Excitingly, the sheet contains 10 U.S.P.S. designed stamps and 2 Japan Post designed stamps. I like these a lot, but find it strange to have a stamp featuring cherry blossoms and Washington D.C. monuments again so soon. It feels like a recycling of the Cherry Blossom Centennial stamp from 2012.
Boy, I have a lot of opinions about stamps. What are your opinions? Please share in the comments!
Shut up. These are so great!! It's like they've finally started to listen to us! I think the stamps are sort of blah, but I can't take my eyes off those stickers and the illustrated selvage. Thanks U.S.P.S. for making stamps fun and beautiful. These From Me To You stamps are being released today. If you're in Washington, D.C., why not attend the official release party?
These stamps kick off National Letter Writing Month (which is in April now, and not October, but they'll probably tell me it's in October too. Whatever.) There is a lot of great stuff going on in celebration. Stay tuned to this blog, Donovan and Kathy on Twitter, and Instagram for all the latest!
I think the photographs in this new booklet stamp issue look like paintings. There's such a flowing, soft quality to them. They are really lovely, but like most flower stamps, sort of boring. Still, I do like them. Also, I'm going on record for predicting a succulents issue. There was a 20cent cactus issue years ago, and succulents are so in right now. The Water Lilies will be issued today!
There was so much letter news in February that I ran out of room (and sort of forgot) to tell you about these pretty snazzy stamp releases. Robert Robinson Taylor was issued on the 12th and the Vintage Rose and Vintage Tulip came out on the 14th. The stamp game was really on last month, and the upcoming March releases are also exciting. There is also the Stars And Stripes issue that came out on the 27th, but it's only for Pre-Sorted mail.
In honor of Chinese New Year, there's a new stamp release on Saturday, the 7th, for the Year of the Ram. I'll admit that I like knowing more about the celebratory traditions of the new year through these completely baffling stamps, but the lack of iconography in it makes me less inclined to use it. The dragonstamps were pretty great. The drums and firecrackers were okay. The flowers and fruits were a snooze. They've never topped the cut paper issues from way back in the 32 cent days in my opinion. I think that's why they continue to use those designs as a graphic element on these less identifiable stamps. The coloring on the stamps and the use of the gold is gorgeous. I will definitely get some of these, but not a whole lot.
The letterform art of Jessica Hische adorns these new stamps from the U.S.P.S. They are released tomorrow, just in time for your Valentine mail. The First Day ceremony will be held at the Virgina Museum of Fine Arts.
I suppose I feel a little indifferent towards this issue. It's fine. It's not bad; it just doesn't really light my fire. I do like the tiny heart dot between the "USA" and "Forever", but it might be the adherence to the heart-shape overall that is boring me. I think these could have made really spectacular circular stamps and would have been more versatile to boot.
This stamp was released on the 19th and maybe it's the purple, but I like it. It depicts the biblical story of the journey of the three wise men, or Magi, to the birth of Christ. What I really like about its design is how it works with the Holy Family issue from 2012. If you have some holiday cards to send and aren't against overpaying your postage for art's sake, I could envision some interesting stamp placements telling a story on your envelopes. Plus, the design is really modern. Put it on a black envelope and do the addressing in bronze ink and that's a swanky card right there.
P.S. Also, if you haven't yet, check out the new stuff at www.uspsstamps.com. The calendar and articles are especially nice.
Oh, boy, people are sooooo excited by the Rudolph stamps released yesterday amidst a whole lotta cuteness at the National Postal Museum. I know someone here at the Clubhouse *coughKathycough* pre-ordered them. I feel okay about them, but then, I have weird feelings about the Rudolph movie in the first place. The stamps are cute and fun though.
I do kinda wish they were all stamps of The Bumble (the stamp just says "Bumble" but I know his first name is "The") and everyone is going to be left with lonely Hermey stamps. Also, Yukon Cornelius was a way bigger character than Santa. (Why am I not consulted about every single stamp release?) It's nice to have this nostalgic moment for the holiday mail. You can read all about them on the USPS stamps website (and pay no attention to it telling you that Charlton Heston stamps are coming out; they already did). How are the holiday stamp releases looking around the world? Any particularly good or awful ones you want to share? Let us know in the comments.
'Tis that time of year again when the U.S.P.S. starts to release their holiday stamps. We get things rolling in a secular fashion with this snazzy Silver Bell Wreath global stamp. My Twitter feed was all agog when this stamp was first teased. I like that they are keeping the wreath theme going, but I might have liked last year's wreath a teensy bit more.
Also being released on the 23rd is the Winter Fun issue. And you know what? The stamps are fun. Finally. A secular issue that I don't hate, even if I secretly wish they were all cardinals or all ice skaters...and I could do without the snowman one. Oh, don't listen to me being a humbug; the stamps are fun and I can't wait to use them.
In this era of instantaneous communication, a handwritten letter is a rare and wondrous item. The Letter Writers Alliance is dedicated to preserving this art form. Prepare your pen and paper, moisten your tongue, and get ready to write more letters!
May 28th (Thursday)
Chicago, IL Letter Social
Uncle Art Gallery 7-9pm 1359 N Maplewood Ave
Join us and our typewriters to write some letters together. We will have mail art supplies, stationery, and a few of our old-fangled typing machines available for your use. Free!
May 30th (Saturday)
Chicago, IL OBSCURA DAY 2015
L.W.A. Clubhouse Several time slots available
Enjoy exclusive access to the Letter Writers Alliance Club House in celebration of Obscura Day. You'll see the inner sanctum of operations for the letter writing organization and have an opportunity to write letters and postcards using vintage typewriters.
Your ticket includes free supplies and typewriter time. Donovan, the Letter Writers Alliance typewriter expert, will be on hand to answer questions, troubleshoot cranky machines and make pithy comments. Come join us and type a letter or two!
Tickets: $5 Purchase options available soon!
June 6th (Saturday)
Chicago, IL Postcard Party
606 Opening Celebration, 10am-6pm
Humboldt Blvd between Cortland & Wabansia
Write some postcards and explore the new Bloomingdale Trail with us. Free!
June 7th (Sunday)
Chicago, IL Mix & Mailology
L.W.A. Clubhouse 3:30-5pm
Old Fashions and Wax Seals, two old-timey things we love. Learn the secrets of mixing an excellent Old Fashion and making the perfect wax impression on your envelopes. We will also have other wax-like experiments for your mail art pleasure. Our solutions, both alcoholic and artistic, will surprise you. All materials, including liquid forms, will be provided.
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July 12th (Sunday)
World-Wide L.W.A. Book Club
Join Kathy, Donovan, and a special guest Margaret Haas (of Paper Pastries) via live video while we discuss Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. Discussion and further info can be found on the Goodreads book group page. Event Page
The L.W.A. was established in 2007 by Kathy Zadrozny & Donovan Beeson. These two ladies manage every aspect of the Alliance, from design, to packing orders, to maintaining the website. The L.W.A. is a labor of love and we are happy you have joined us in sharing a love for letters.