Lady Bird Johnson Souvenir Stamp Sheet Now Available

We are very pleased to announce the release of the Lady Bird Johnson souvenir sheet! The new release was dedicated earlier today in a ceremony at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas.

The Lady Bird Johnson souvenir sheet features six stamps. The five stamps on the left side of the sheet commemorate the visible legacy left by Mrs. Johnson’s beautification projects. These stamps, originally issued in the 1960s with art by Walter D. Richards and Gyo Fujikawa, have been adapted for printing in offset lithography by artist Paloma Alcalá.

Celebrate the legacy left by a beloved First Lady with this full sheet of six Lady Bird Johnson (Forever®) stamps cancelled by four black postmarks. Click for more info.

Each stamp bears a caption and an image to encourage participation in beautification projects. The top stamp reads “Plant for more Beautiful Streets” and shows a row of blooming crab apple trees along a paved suburban road. The second from the top offers the encouragement to “Plant for more Beautiful Parks,” with an image of a field of daffodils along the Potomac River with the Washington Monument in the background. “Plant for a more Beautiful America,” the center stamp, depicts the Jefferson Memorial seen through branches of flowering cherry blossoms. The fourth stamp is a scene of yellow and blue wildflowers along a highway with the caption “Plant for more Beautiful Highways.” The last stamp, which reads “Plant for more Beautiful Cities,” shows plantings of pink and red azaleas and white tulips with the U.S. Capitol in the distance.

Each #6 ¾ envelope in this set features a different affixed Lady Bird Johnson (Forever®) stamp and an official First Day of Issue postmark. Click for more information.

The single stamp on the right side of the sheet features the official White House portrait of Mrs. Johnson. An oil painting by Elizabeth Shoumatoff, the portrait—courtesy of the White House Historical Association (White House Collection)—shows the First Lady, seated, wearing an empire-waist gown of golden yellow.

The black-and-white image of Mrs. Johnson that appears on the sheet was taken from a family photograph shot in 1963 by Yoichi Okamoto.

The Lady Bird Johnson stamps are being issued as Forever® stamps. Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate. At the time of issuance, the stamps are being sold at a price of 45 cents each or $2.70 per souvenir sheet.

Celebrating Lunar New Year Series Continues in 2013

In 2013, we hope you will join us in welcoming the Year of the Snake with a bang! The new lunar year begins February 10, 2013, and we’ll be celebrating with the release of this, the sixth of twelve stamps in the Celebrating Lunar New Year series. The series, which began in 2008, will continue through 2019 with stamps for the Year of the Horse, Ram, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Boar.

The gorgeous Year of the Snake stamp features original artwork by illustrator Kam Mak, who grew up in New York City’s Chinatown and now lives in Brooklyn. The artwork for the stamp series focuses on some of the common ways the Lunar New Year holiday is celebrated. For the Year of the Snake, the illustration—originally created using oil paints on panel—depicts firecrackers of the sort commonly used to greet the new year.

The stamp design also incorporates two elements from the previous series of Lunar New Year stamps—Clarence Lee’s intricate paper-cut design of a snake and the Chinese character for “Snake,” drawn in grass-style calligraphy by Lau Bun.

The Year of the Snake stamp will be issued as a Forever® stamp in 2013. (Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.) An official release date has not yet been set, but the stamps are . There is also !

How do you plan to celebrate the lunar new year?

Kaleidoscope Flowers Stamps Will Mesmerize in 2013

In 2013, the U.S. Postal Service will continue its long tradition of issuing with the release of Kaleidoscope Flowers. Each of the four stamps in this utterly distinctive new set depicts the same flower illustration in one of four different color combinations.

The graphic designs of artists Petra and Nicole Kapitza inspired art director Antonio Alcalá to envision a sleek and modern flower stamp—something entirely different from previous stamps featuring flowers.

The Kapitzas explored numerous options for the new look using digital illustration software. After choosing the final design, Alcalá added color to create a set of stamps that was reminiscent of old-fashioned kaleidoscope images yet also completely new. The visual impact is dramatic. Look at the stamps long enough and their patterns seem to be in motion, receding one moment and then pushing forward the next.

The Kaleidoscope Flowers stamps will be released in 2013. An official release date has not yet been set, but the stamps are currently available for pre-order.

New Sealed With Love Stamp Coming in 2013

The year 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the popular Love stamps, and we are delighted today to reveal the latest in the series: Sealed With Love.

Artist Louise Fili has always been fascinated by the graphic quality of wax seals. “They are elegant and romantic,” she explains. Red, the color most often associated with romantic love, was the obvious color choice for the seal. But Fili knew that a seal by itself wouldn’t work as a stamp design; it needed to be grounded on something.

Fili used subtle shadows to indicate the back of an envelope, evoking the romance of a bygone era. “I was happy to be able to actually reference the concept of letter writing for the design of this stamp,” she says. So are we!

The Sealed With Love stamp will be released in early 2013. An official release date has not yet been set, but the stamps are .

2013 Emancipation Proclamation Stamp Revealed

We are very excited today to begin sharing with you some of the stamps to be issued in 2013! The first commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared that all slaves in the rebel states of the Confederacy “are, and henceforward shall be free.” A first day of issue has not yet been set.

Art director Antonio Alcalá worked with graphic designer Gail Anderson to produce the stamp. To evoke the look of broadsides from the Civil War era, they employed Hatch Show Print of Nashville, Tennessee, one of the oldest working letterpress print shops in the United States.

You can pre-order the stamp at or by phone at () for delivery a few days following the dedication ceremony. Five thousand limited-edition 16″ x 23″ posters featuring the stamp art will be available for purchase later this afternoon. The posters were made using a traditional letterpress printing process that makes each one unique. Each poster has been numbered, and the first 1,000 will be autographed by graphic designer Gail Anderson.

We will be issuing other stamps in 2013 to commemorate significant anniversaries in the struggle for African-American rights. Can you guess what they are?

Visit Beyond the Perf for more information on the 2013 stamp program, and check back here tomorrow for another stamp revealed.