Friday, February 22, 2013

Stamps and Stationery

A new supply of writing papers.

One of the nice things about my plan to write a letter or note each day in February, the Letter a Day Month, is that I have used up quite a bit of my stationery. Oh boy. That means I get to go shopping. Next to a bookstore, a stationery store is my favorite place to be. 

Here is what I picked up today at a shop called Paper Source: note cards with cheerful birds and a box of more sedate correspondence papers from Crane.

I love the eggs on the envelope liner of the note cards. 

The shop had lots of paper items to choose from but I kept my eye on the goal of note cards and writing paper. 

I have noticed that sometimes stationery manufacturers do too much for us by cluttering up writing papers, flat note cards, and specialty cards with garish designs leaving very little room to write our own news, sentiments, or thoughts. And I don't need a pre-printed thank you, birthday, or sympathy card. I can come up with my own heartfelt words, thank you very much.

That is why it is important for me to have a varied supply of stationery to suit every occasion. And a good fountain pen.

Yesterday, in the United Kingdom, Jane Austen stamps went on sale in honor of the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice. I checked the U.S. Postal Service site and see that in America we have stamps available that honor authors O. Henry, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and ten 20th century poets from Elizabeth Bishop to William Carlos Williams. 

Alas, no Jane Austen.

Here is what Ms. Austen had to say about letter writing:

Everyone allows that the talent of writing agreeable letters is particularly female.

Royal Mail's Jane Austen stamps


  1. Oh, Belle, these Jane Austen stamps are fabulous! I love stamps, and always ask the postmaster what he or she has that is fun or commemorative.

    I try to stay clear of Paper Source - because I have as little self-control over paper products as I do over books. The envelope with the eggs on the liner is charming.

    1. I thought the Austen stamps were pretty spectacular. I just recently learned that one can buy US stamps online and there is no charge for delivery. There is a much larger selection online. At the post office it is often catch as catch can.

      Yes, Paper Source is a dangerous place. Ours just opened about a year ago.

    2. Fortunately, for my pocketbook, unfortunately for my paper yearning, the Paper Source nearest me is a good 40 minutes of city driving away.

      I have ordered US stamps online, Belle, and there are much more stamps available. It is easy to do, I just need to do it before I run out of stamps.

      Years ago, I ordered the most beautiful first day issue Georgia O'Keefe stamp of her red poppy. The stamps came in a magnificently constructed envelope that opened, like petals of a flower, and held inside the stamps and a commemorative explanation. I paid $7.50 for them. They were so lovely, I had them framed, to a hefty price. The framer did a creative job of positioning the stamps and explanation artfully on the opened petals. Everyone and anyone who entered marveled at it. Unfortunately, we (I say we so I don't have to take all of the blame) hung it on wall that caught the late afternoon sun. The poppy is now orange. Wasn't that a long comment to a comment about stamps? Sorry. I do tend to ramble at times.

    3. Ouch. My mother always warned me about sun damage and furniture and artwork and I rarely paid her any mind. Your story reminds me of the harsh reality of 'fading.' Sorry those poppies have changed color but what a great story.