Canada Angel, Holiday Portraits Christmas stamps issued Nov. 1
By David Hartwig
On Nov. 1 Canada Post issued four stamps to welcome the Christmas holiday season.
A single religious-themed permanent-rate Christmas stamp features a trumpet-yielding angel soaring above an outline of a church.
The church and angel appear in gold against a white background. Stars scattered throughout the sky appear in silver. The letter “P” inside the maple leaf in the upper right indicates that it is a permanent-rate stamp paying the basic domestic letter rate (currently 92¢).
Canada Post’s first-day cover for the Angel stamp depicts similar gold images of an angel above various buildings portraying a village setting. A cross above a harp is incorporated in the pictorial postmark design from Christmas Island, Nova Scotia.
In the well-known Biblical story, a messenger angel, along with a choir of angels, announced the birth of Jesus to shepherds who then departed for Bethlehem.
Santa Claus, a reindeer and an elf are the subjects of Canada Post’s secular Holiday Portraits Christmas stamps.
The stylized Holiday Portraits stamps “feature adorable, full-of-personality portraits of three classic holiday characters,” according to Canada Post. These characters each appear like they are posing for a picture.
Santa Claus looking ahead and smiling against a backdrop of pine and berries sets the scene for the domestic-rate stamp.
On the $1.30 stamp for letters mailed to the United States, a reindeer strikes a similar pose against a red floral background.
Last in the series is an elf smiling in front of a blue background sprinkled with candy canes. This is the design for the $2.71 rate for letters to other international destinations.
All three Holiday Portraits stamps are se-tenant (side-by-side) on a souvenir sheet. The sheet’s background shows reindeer pulling Santa’s sleigh high above a dark village at night.
Canada Post’s FDC for the Holiday Portraits set is franked with the souvenir sheet and shows a close-up of Santa driving his team of reindeer from the sleigh. The FDC is postmarked from Noelville, Ontario, with text circling a picture of a present.
Stephane Huot designed the Angel stamp from an illustration by Luc Melanson. Canadian Bank Note printed the stamp by three-color lithography in booklets of 12.
Larry Burke and Anna Stredulinsky of Burke & Burke designed the Holiday Portraits stamps from an illustration by Genevieve Godbout. Lowe-Martin printed them by four-color lithography.
The permanent-rate Santa Claus stamp was printed in booklets of 12, while the $1.30 Reindeer and $2.71 Elf stamps were each printed in booklets of six.
The quantities printed were 480,000 permanent-rate Angel booklets; 1.3 million permanent-rate Santa Claus booklets; 330,000 $1.30 Reindeer booklets; 330,000 Elf booklets; and 55,000 Holiday Portraits souvenir sheets.
Canada Post’s ordering numbers for the stamp booklets, souvenir sheet and FDCs are 114176 (Angel booklet), 414176131 (Angel FDC), 114177 (Santa Claus booklet), 114178 (Reindeer booklet), 114179 (Elf booklet), 404177145 (Holiday Portraits souvenir sheet) and 414176131 (Holiday Portraits FDC).
The new Angel and Holiday Portraits stamps and related items are available from Canada Post’s online shop. Stamps and FDCs are available by mail order from Canada Post Customer Service, Box 90022, 2701 Riverside Drive, Ottawa, ON K1V 1J8 Canada; or by telephone from the United States or Canada at 800-565-4362, and from other countries at 902-863-6550.
Canada’s stamps and stamp products also are available from many new-issue stamp dealers, and from Canada Post’s agent in the United States: Interpost, Box 400, Hewlett, NY 11557.
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