Letterpress Emancipation Proclamation Poster Evokes Civil War-era Broadsides

PosterCommemorate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation with this .

This unique collectible was created using antique wood type and ornamentation set by hand at in Nashville, Tennessee, one of the oldest working letterpress shops in the U.S. (It opened about 15 years after the end of the Civil War.)  “We’re proud to be part of such a momentous occasion in such a modern context,” said shop manager Jim Sherraden.

The 16 x 23-inch poster, which is numbered and has been signed by designer Gail Anderson, is perfect for framing and will make a truly distinctive addition to your collection. .

New High-Denomination Stamps Wave Hello

Today the U.S. Postal Service issued four new sheets of stamps denominated at four different rates: $1, $2, $5, and $10. As the denominations increase, the stamp sizes grow larger. Designed for your convenience, the elegant stamps will lend a contemporary appearance to packages, large envelopes, and other mailings.

Block of 4 copy

In order to suggest their status as high-denomination issues, these unusual and handsome stamps benefit from a highly detailed printing process that creates dense, abstract patterns similar to an engraved bank note. They were printed using offset lithography and intaglio processes.

What do you think? Beautiful, eh?

New Waves of Color Stamps Coming Dec. 1

We are delighted today to announce that the Waves of Color stamps will be issued Saturday, December 1, at the Florida State Stamp Show inside the Central Florida Fairgrounds (4603 West Colonial Drive) in Orlando, Florida.

These four distinctive and elegant new stamps will lend a contemporary appearance to packages, large envelopes, and other mailings. The stamps are denominated at the $1, $2, $5, and $10 rates and are available for pre-order now.

Connie Totten-Oldham, USPS stamp development manager, will dedicate the stamps. The ceremony begins at 9 a.m. Hope to see you there!

Start Your Week With A “Sketchy” Disney•Pixar Contest

Remember last week’s post about the blue-pencil sketches on the back of the Mail a Smile stamp sheet? Well, now’s your chance to show us how well you know the five Disney•Pixar movies featured on the stamps.

Here is the back of the stamp sheet again:

Can you name all the characters shown in the sketches? If so, you could win one set of Mail a Smile postcards, which include the stamp art and five of the sketches.

To enter, send your name and address along with the name of each character and the movie in which he/she/it appears to uspsstamps [at] gmail [dot] com. Three winners will be selected at random from those who answer correctly. You have until 11:59 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, 9/12 to submit your answers. Good luck!

Disney/Pixar Materials: © Disney•Pixar

It’s Sewing Machine Day!

No, we didn’t know such a thing as Sewing Machine Day existed either, but we can’t resist any opportunity to revisit this stamp:

These two streamlined sewing machines (don’t you wish you had one?) were designed by Dave Chapman, who is probably best known for his innovative and award-winning designs for classroom furniture. The sewing machines—whose chrome grilles evoked the sleek look of contemporary automobiles—were shown at the first exhibition of the American Society of Industrial Designers in 1947.

Chapman studied architecture at the Armour Institute of Technology (later known as the Illinois Institute of Technology). In 1933, he joined Montgomery Ward, first as an architect and then as head of product design. He left in 1936 to open his own industrial design office, with clients that included Corning Glass, Maytag, Hamilton Beach, Parker Pens, Johnson Motors, Inc., and Sears. In 1950, Chapman served as the president of the Society of Industrial Designers. Four years later, his firm designed a line of classroom furniture for Brunswick-Balke-Collender Company. Made of tubular steel and plywood, the furniture earned the highest honor bestowed by the Society of Industrial Designers. Chapman was named a Benjamin Franklin Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in 1960.

The Dave Chapman stamp was one of 12 Pioneers of American Industrial Design Forever® stamps issued in 2011 and !