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Poster Stamps Rising Dramatically In Popularity
[From Stamps.Net]

post0006.gif (12835 bytes)post0008.gif (11283 bytes) Tens of thousands of colorful Poster Stamps appeared
throughout the western world in the first 50 years of this
century. They are intriguing collectibles highly sought after
by not only philatelists (especially those who collect
topicals), but art and nostalgia lovers of all kinds.

From the hobbyist’s point of view, poster stamps are collectible in whatever way strikes your fancy. Some collect by topic, seeking any image of a cat, let’s say. It doesn’t matter whether the cat image is advertising cat food or shoes, a cat show or an art show, National Cat Week or a masquerade is the cat that matters. Others would want not only images of cats but also anything pertaining to cats, the thematic approach. Others collect stamps from their hometown or home state, or from their alma mater or of their favorite sport. The possibilities are endless, limited only by one’s imagination. That’s what makes them so wonderful.

Poster stamp collecting was one of the most popular hobbies during the first few decades of this century. There were, arguably, more poster stamp collectors than postage stamp collectors, with thousands of different albums and innumerable clubs (more than a thousand in the US alone). There were special poster stamp exhibitions and many dealers who specialized in poster stamps. Then, as the designs became less interesting and other forms of advertising became prevalant, they faded from the scene, sought only by the very few who remembered them or came upon them by chance, as I did. Interest in them is again blossoming. The popularity of them at collectibles shows is spectacular.

You need not be a stamp collector to find these lovely stamps fascinating. Many graphic designers and art collectors now seek them out, these miniature renderings by famous artists of the past which take a fraction of the space of the posters they are derived from and cost far less. Particularly sought after are those by such artists as Mucha, Hohlwein, Parrish, Cassandre, Hohenstein and Penfield.

The time to look for the best ones is NOW. Unlike postage stamps, which have an international market, there are only a few dealers with any depth of stock. Were you to request a $10,000 postage stamp, in most cases it could be obtained with a few phone calls. Not so with a $25 poster stamp. Already, certain poster stamps are reaching the $100 price level with one particularly rare specimen recently selling for $750. More will surely follow this trend as their scarcity becomes known and their beauty appreciated. Like all collectibles, scarce and rare items are exactly that, and command the appropriate price.

There are two main societies in the U.S. for those interested in poster stamps: The Ephemera Society of America and The Poster Stamp Society. In England, there is the Cinderella Stamp Club; in France, L’Arc en Ciel; in Germany, Errinophilie International; in Australia, the Cinderella Stamp Club of Australia. There are, no doubt, others. Email Image Nostalgia, Inc.   for their current addresses.

Image Nostalgia, Inc. maintains the largest stock of poster stamps in the world. Its stock is arranged primarily by topic and they respond to want lists organized in that manner. But there is much cross-referencing so do not hesitate to make any request, no matter how seemingly impossible. You won’t know if you don’t ask!

John Hotchner takes great pleasure in helping collectors

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