My love affair with vintage stamps started when my grandmother shared a box of cards, addressed-stamped-mailed, all dating from when she was a little girl in the 30’s. She had told me that opening the box would transport whomever opened it into a fair away time full of stories and love.
I’m not certain where that box ended up after all these years, but the experience of traveling through history with messages and notes from loved ones, each showcasing a stamp specifically selected for that card, stuck with me.
When we started wedding planning I knew that finding fun and beautiful stamps for our invitations was something I wanted to do, pinterest with it’s beautiful examples fueled my desire to make opening and receiving out invitations something special.
I did some digging and decided the easy way of ordering vintage postage (color matched and sorted by price from a specialty shop or Etsy) was going to be way more expensive then I was willing to pay. Luckily I found a local stop in Colorado [Arapahoe Stamp and Coin] who not only sold unused postage but provided a 10% discount off purchases. Now I was SAVING money by using vintage stamps.
If you are interested in using vintage postage, definitely reach out to your local coin and stamp collector stores because they might surprise you by offering similar pricing.
My mom and I took the trip down the store where we were brought into a back room full of stamps sorted by denomination. This meant we needed to sort by color and price with the hope of finding stamps that would add up to $.49. After about 2 hours of hunting we left with $80 worth of mismatched stamps in our wedding colors.
The next step was matching stamps up by price. Honestly this is where the entire ordeal became extremely complicated. Finding the right quantities in the right colors took the better mart of 5 hours. I matched them up in amounts and stored those stamps into the envelopes we planned to use for the invitations so it would be easy to later address the invites and stick the stamps on.
The last step was glueing the stamps not the envelopes themselves, also more tricky then you might think. Some older stamps do not have glue at all, so we used a glue stick once we figured out how to position the right number of stamps in the right place on each of the envelopes.
Overall I loved the way the invitations looked but probably [definitely if I’m honest] I could have spent my time better elsewhere. We received a lot of compliments on the finished look but the extra time the process took was a bit silly. The overall savings was somewhat of a wash as well since we purchased ALOT more then we needed for the invitations. **Yes all my family will be receiving Christmas cards with vintage stamps as well.**
Editor’s note: During this time of quarantine and social distancing, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Learn more here.