US Stamps

Framing philatelic objects

Oct 4, 2022, 8 AM
The United States Postal Service offers many framed postage stamps through its Postal Store website. This framed item for the 2021 Star Wars Droids stamps includes an image of R2-D2 and a block of 10 Star Wars Droids stamps below the image.

Philatelic Foreword by Jay Bigalke

We place extra interest in key items in our collections. And sometimes an important item might look great framed and on a wall.

An inquiry by John Rosenthal via email prompted my editorial topic.

“Today, I received a panel of the 6 stamps from the Ukraine depicting their reply to the Russians request to surrender,” he wrote. “My first thought was to have them framed. If so, are there details I need to share with the framer?”

Rosenthal’s query led me to believe others might have similar questions or might want to share what they have done.

The obvious large concern when framing an item that has value, either sentimental or monetary, is that one has to consider that light might adversely affect the object displayed.

Sometimes faded colors aren’t a concern to the collector. If so, it would be no issue to frame the item, display it proudly and dispose of it when the colors are faded too much.

When that isn’t an option, one can buy a frame that has a special coating on the glass or plastic that helps prevent light from affecting the framed object.

Another suggestion I heard at one time was to make a high-quality scan of the item and frame that image. One could then keep the actual item in their collection and be able to enjoy it more with a copy of it on the wall in an office.

Regarding instructions to a framer, one could use a matte board of archival quality. I have purchased the appropriate Scott stamp mount to place the item in and then affixed that mount to the matte board.

Those that do framing will have lots of suggestions when it comes to making the frame look nice.

Sometimes purchasing already framed items is easier, especially for new issues. The United States Postal Service has many framed items available for sale via its Postal Store website. Click on the “gifts” tab near the top of the home page.

Pictured nearby is one of the framed items the USPS sells for the 2021 Star Wars Droids stamps. It has a decorative design featuring R2-D2 and an actual block of 10 Star Wars Droids stamps below the design, not a publicity image.

I have also seen and purchased framed stamp art like this from Canada Post and Great Britain’s Royal Mail.

I would enjoy hearing from readers sharing how they frame stamps or philatelic items. Maybe we can publish a few of the responses in an upcoming Letters to Linn’s column. Please email or write to Letters to Linn’s, Box 4129, Sidney, OH 45365.

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