That Back to School Feeling

One of my favorite times of the year, back when I was young and later as a parent, was Back to School time.  Sometimes I still get a hint of that feeling when perusing office supplies.  For me, it was the planning and organization of it all that I found exciting.  I’m guessing many a stamp collector shares this feeling.

stamp supplies are like school supplies …

For school there were pens, pencils, erasers, and rulers for the paper; paper and notebooks for the folders; folders for the binders; and binders for the backpack.  For stamp collections there are mounts, tongs, and magnifiers for the stamps;  stamps for the pages;  and stock pages and supplements for the binders or albums.  All this to organize your work by subject.

… and stamp collecting topics are like school subjects

And what do you do about 3 weeks into the new school year?  Re-Organize based on what you learned along the way, of course.  I believe my first stamp collection was comprised of somewhat random foreign stamps that merely appealed to me visually.  A short time later, I organized these into rough topical categories like animals and shapes like triangle stamps.  From there, I re-organized my stamps into Worldwide countries, eventually focusing on Mongolia and Mexico.  All the while, I kept expanding outside these first rough categories.

Do you get that back to school feeling when planning and organizing your stamp collection?  If so, do you stay within the bounds of an existing album?  Or do you let your collection and imagination build itself as you go?  Either way, the experts at Jamestown Stamp Company know how to help.  We’re here to spark your interest in new countries and topics as well as aid your focus on specific time periods or countries. Let us know what you like.  We’ll help you build the perfect stamp collection!

Stamp Albums or Stockpages

When my eight year-old daughter began to show an interest in collecting stamps, I considered getting her a beginner type worldwide stamp album.  There was a moment when I considered opting for stockpages instead just as I was passing over the money.  But I thought she may as well start out right with a full-blown album.  While she was on fire for the hobby on day one, by day 5 that fire was just a few sorry embers.  Some time later she asked for one of the stockpages I had laying around to put in a few newly acquired stamps.  Later still, on a day when I was ill, I had found that she had spent a goodly portion of the day arranging and rearranging her stamps in a few stockpages.

building her collection her way…

What I found was that the stockpages appealed to her more for several reasons.  One, they made viewing and placing her stamps more fun and kid friendly without the worry.  Two, they allowed for changing (or more accurately developing) her preferences.  Every once and a while now I see her pull out her stamps and stockpages.  She tries to tell me what her latest plans are but I admittedly don’t really understand much of what she’s talking about.  But one thing is for certain, my daughter is building her collection her way and enjoying it more than I could have hoped for…developing a love for collecting stamps in a way I never could have taught her to.

Anyone have similar (or differing) experiences?

— James the Web guy (originally posted in 2006)