Beautiful art, delivered daily

One of the issues my clients often need help with is finding great art for their walls. Big, blank walls can be intimidating. If you missed it earlier, check out my “5 Rules for Art in Your Home“. This post is about one of my favorite art tips, because we look at these items every day without thinking about them. What are they?

Image courtesy of Wikipedia

Stamps! Have you ever thought of stamps as tiny works of art? You’re not alone if you haven’t. If you do think about it, stamps celebrate the very best ideas, culture, history and individuals of our nations. They are competitively commissioned and designed by talented artists in every country. Why not appreciate stamps as the art they already are?

Did you know that the first adhesive stamp was introduced in 1840? The “Penny Black”, shown above, was created to regulate mail rates and eliminate corruption in the United Kingdom’s postal service. Today, an original mint-condition Penny Black is worth around $2,500.

That is a nice return on an antique stamp, but you would hardly cover a family room wall with old, black stamps, right?  Today we have more options. Here is a close-up from a collection from my home:

My husband and I have been on a lot of road trips across the US and we always cheer when we enter a new state. Cheesy? Absolutely. Fun? Yes! When we saw this collection of stamps come out, it reminded us of all those state border signs. We ran to the post office to  get a full set of our own. It cost us only $17. We had an inexpensive matte cut to make the sheet of stamps fit a standard frame, which kept the whole project cheap.  Here’s the colorful, finished art:

Just to be clear, we don’t collect stamps for their collector’s value.  We collect them because they mean something to us or we find them beautiful. (Sound familiar?  Check out the William Morris quote in this post.) Art is very personal, so we only buy what we like.  Here’s another one of ours:

I also have a set of four sheets I just bought to matte and frame together as a little collection. They all feature icons of historic design, which is right up my alley. All four sheets (of twenty stamps each) cost me $2.00.  If this is not affordable art, I don’t know what is!

Sometimes we find stamps that are just beautiful, even if we don’t have a space picked out for them now. I just store those stamps in a simple album, until we want to change things up a bit on our walls.  Like these:

(You can read more about the images from the stamps above here.)

You can hardly see where the stamps divide in this sheet.  Beautiful!

Do you like this idea for art?  What are images you would like to find as art for your home?  Want to look for more stamps right now?

  • Visit USA Philatelic for a FREE copy of their beautiful, quarterly catalog of all current US Stamps.
  • Visit the US Postal Service shop for special stamp collections, supplies and additional stamp decor items.
  • Visit the American Philatelic Society to find a real wealth of info about stamp collecting and finding older stamps.

Posted on April 11, 2011, in Decor. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I have to admit, I was pretty closed minded about stamp-collecting, but you’re right. Every once in a while I’ll notice a really beautiful design in stamps. I’m just mailing bills, but now I think I’ll take another look. What you’ve done with the stamps in your home is beautiful.

  2. Beautiful idea! I always loved some of the artwork that goes into stamps but never thought of them as something you could hang on a wall. What would be neat is to get a first day edition for someone’s birthday and frame it for them as a gift.

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