One of the many handmade elements of our Art Deco wedding happens to be our wedding stationary. I designed them. Then I got all crafty on the inside of the envelopes with pretty, fancy liners. But, after they were all sealed and ready to go I was faced with the fear that our plain store bought envelopes may fall a little flat in our guests’ mailboxes. Yes, that was legitimately a fear. Maybe I need to re-prioritize, LOL!
Anywho, I had to take it up a notch. I added some Art Deco glamour. “How?” you might ask, with a little vintage stamp collection that’s how. If you want to glam up your envelopes keep reading, if not please promise me you won’ t use the awful wedding stamps available now at your nearest post office – wow they are bad! If you don’t want to go vintage there is another option, go custom. Zazzle.com lets you design your own stamps, I was tempted. They are a little pricey though.
But onto the vintagey goodness . . . first things first you will need quite a collection of stamps to make it up current postage rates. Most vintage stamps are in the 3-10 cent range, which if you do the math that would add up to be a lot of stamps on one envelope. So, when you find anything above 15 cent mark don’t walk away, it’s about as rare as the diamond on your finger.
Admittedly not everyone likes the treasure hunt as much as I do (Treasure Island was one of my fav books as a kid) and by treasure hunt I mean thrifting. For me there is a natural high to finding something at a thrift shop with history and glamour. I recently found some beautiful French champagne coupes, it was like the highlight of my week.
While I do have a tendency to collect just about anything, I surprisingly did not have a stamp collection of my own. So, I raided various stamp collections across the area. You will be surprised to find a lot of antique stores, coin shops, and estate sales have a lot of stamp collections to peruse. The trick to getting all the glamour without the big price tag is to go after stamps that are unused and uncanceled but, are not collectible. And make sure you confirm that this is in fact what you are buying. Most of the stamps I found were actually priced at face value. You can also splurge, if you don’t feel like treasure hunting at all of the local antique stores by buying them online. Ebay is a great resource and this search is a perfect starting point. USmintsheets.com also has a lot of beautiful stamps at reasonable prices. Verde Studios, an etsy shop will even do a custom design of a vintage stamp collection for you if you have the budget for it. Just be careful, consider this your fair warning, there is a chance you could get a little carried away and buy 3 times as many stamps as you actually need. I had to consciously discourage myself from looking for them. It became quite an obsession.
Now that you have your collection the real fun begins. I had such a blast playing around with the colors and layout combinations. There were some out there pairings that I had to tone down a bit, but I was really pleased with the mix of art deco, flowers, and such that we ended up with. What do you think?
- Rebecca Smith