Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I was once a Philatelist

I love collecting different things. I started developing this habit when I saw people featured on local TV programs showcasing their different collections. I was amazed and I wanted to earn that accomplishment too.

I am usually enthusiastic and diligent whenever I start building my own collections. As a kid, I would sacrifice a portion of my allowance to increase my collections. Unfortunately, I was not able to sustain my desire to complete any of my collections. At some point, I will just stop collecting different pieces and develop interest on other things. Most of the time, I find myself repeating this cycle.

My first collection was all about those stationery, stickers and letter sets. I would collect colorful and scented papers and later on trade with my classmates. I cannot recall my exact age when I started losing interest on those colorful and scented papers. What happened to my folders of stationeries, I can't even remember.

When I was in Grade 4, our school required us to join organizations that matched our interest. Some of the organizations include Art and Crafts, Cooking, Sewing, and Writing. I chose to join the Stamp Club becuase of  my budding interest in collecting stamps. Among the many organizations I have joined, the Stamp Club became memorable for me because we were given a small responsibility for the school.  Our club maintained the school's satellite post office. We accepted letters for mail from students and employees. We were taught to weigh and compute the cost of mailing letters here and abroad.  It was also my first on-the-job training experience at 10 years old.

Aside from our duty of mainning a mini-post office, we would regularly meet every Friday afternoon to showcase our collections and trade for stamps. It was also through the club where I learned that a stamp collector is formally called as a PHILATELIST.

Among the many items I have collected, my stamps are the longest that I have ever sustained. I managed to increase my stamp collection until I was in college. Today, my collection ended up as an idle and vintage stuff at home. Just to share with you, here's what I have managed to maintain through the years,
My Stamps
My frustration is that I failed to purchase a stamp album for them. When I was in High School, I saw a stamp album from National Bookstore that sells for Php 500, which for a student that time was expensive. It would take me months before to raise that amount. As of today, I can't see any bookstore selling stamp albums. So my precious collections, ended up in this small flat tupperware. 

This is my first Presidential commemorative stamp. The stamp shows our current President, Benigno S. Aquino III.  I bought this from the Philippine Postal Corporation (PhilPost). I love the PhilPost because of three reasons, my maternal grandfather used to work there, I am amazed by the architecture of the place and I find their employees very accommodating and customer oriented.... except for one area that unfortunately sells the commemorative stamps.

Philippine Postal Corporation - Architecture at its finest
When I bought this item, I asked the sales clerk if I could see it first. This envelope with the other collector pieces are stored in a glass cabinet. The sales clerk told me, "Eh nakikita mo na, di ba?" (You can already see it!) Yeah right. Thank you for the sarcastic remark Madam.  Don't worry Madam, the next time I will approach you I will be very precise. "Can I see, feel and touch it?"   

Setting aside the negative story, here are the specific contents of my collection.

I have so far collected from these countries

I have plenty of stamps from Brunei because I used to have a penfriend from this country. My penfriend's name is Azlinawaty Binti Jaini or Azlina for short. We lost communication after some time. I hope I could find and reconnect with her again.

 My China series
Dominican Republic

 Among my Korean stamps, this one is my favorite

A cute teddy bear! Although Mr. Bear looks sick and sad here. I wonder what message is manifested by this stamp.

Most of my stamps from Malaysia are designed with plants, flowers and animals. I like stamps with plant and animal designs because they provide some trivial information too.
Sri Lanka
I love the drawing of the pretty lady here. Too bad, I never researched of what and who possibly is the beautiful lady.

I have plenty of stamps from Thailand because I have a penfriend from that beautiful country too. Her name is Atcharee Bulyalert from Chiangmai. I lost communication with her for a while. But thanks to Facebook and her email address, we were reconnected after ages.

I love how Thailand designs their stamps. The pieces I have collected from them are so colorful, diverse and educational too. Among their pieces, these are my favorites

Thailand's Tuk-Tuk
I hope you are reading this Atcharee. Please correct me if I'm wrong. The stamp shows the Tuk-tuk, one of the most common public transportations in Thailand. If you can still read the description, it says that the stamp is intended for the International Letter Writing Week 1997. Wait, 1997?  That is more than 10 years!! I can't believe that I have this stamp that long. 

Still from Thailand, I believe this is one of their traditional houses. This is similar to my country's Bahay Kubo.

Among my USA series, this is the one that I most LOVE!
Love USA
Lone Piece from Italy
I have collections from unknown Arab countries too. I can't even remember how I acquired these pieces.

How could I ever forget my country! Here are my collections from my beloved, Philippines.

Pilipinas Stamps
The stamps showcase some of my country's national treasures. The second row shows a drawing of the Philippines' national fish, the Bangus (Milkfish). The third stamp from the second row shows the Anahaw (National Leaf aka Livistona rotundifolia). The first stamp from the third row shows the Sampaguita  (National Flowers aka Jasmimum Sam), second stamp is the Philippine Flag and third is the Narra (National Tree). The items in the last row show the Baro't Saya and Barong Tagalong, the Philippines' female and male national costume respectively.

Don't ask me who is the lady in the stamp. I failed to do my research again. But this stamp brings a lot of memories to me. This was the stamp I bought the first time I stepped at the PhilPost. After exploring the Philpost, me and my fellow members of the Stamp Club were brought to the place where commemorative stamps are purchased. I wonder if Sarcastic Madam was already working at that time. ;-)

Philippine Festivities
This is another favorite in my local collections. I love them because they showcase the most awaited and celebrated season in my country, Pasko (Christmas).  The other stamp (on the lower right) identifies the Philippines as a Fiesta Island. My country is also known for its different fiestas or feast. All of the towns in my country have their own feast day.

I hope I will have the willingness and time to revive my collection. I suddenly remembered my grade four teacher, Miss Veronica Bilag, who told us that stamps are like jewelries. The older they get, the more valuable and pricier they become. In fact, they could be treated superior than diamonds. They say diamonds are forever. Stamps are however not designed to exist forever. The government does not repeat the design of each stamp. Each stamp design can be seen in a limited time period only. Diamonds can be mined and structured to one design every now and then. Stamp designs are however special. They come only once and exist only once.

I am joining Paisley Passions' Wandering Wednesday and Savvy Southern Style's Wow Us Wednesdays!

Happy Wednesday to everyone! :)


  1. They all are like little works of art. Lovely!

  2. What a wonderful collection! I've enjoyed looking at each of your stamps! This is something you can enjoy for years to come! Very nice, Diane! ♥♥♥

  3. Hi Diane
    Wow you have really done some soaking work there. I used to do this as a kid too. I remember stamps layed out on towels all over the bathroom drying off. Thanks for reminding me of great childhood memories. And thanks for visiting my blog
    Best Carolyn

  4. I have so enjoyed your comments on my blog the last few days. I would have written you back but when I get your comments in my email and try to answer it goes to no reply. Otherwise I would have written sooner. I think you should group these stamps and frame them with wide pretty colored matts and skinny frames and then do a gallery wall with them. I wanted to collect stamps when I was a kid but didn't. When I was a child I collected Barbie dolls and mice statues and plants. As an adult I have collected many things... It was so much harder to amass a collection before Ebay and it's almost too easy and it takes the fun out of it.

    Thanks for coming by my blog so much!

  5. I LOVE stationary, cards, and pretty stickers! You sure work hard at your lovely collections!

  6. What a wonderful collection you have here and a very interesting story about how you got started. I had to laugh when you mentioned the response you got when you wanted to "see" the stamp.
    Thanks so much for visiting with me. I'm looking forward to your collecting adventures:)

  7. Absolutely astonishing. You have a great collection. The best part of collecting things, especially from different parts of the world- is that you have something from that place. For example, a Japanese stamp- you have something that could have possibly been destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami, but you have it and can conserve it. amazing. just amazing!

  8. Thank you for all those comments. It really made me happy! :)

    @Desire Empire - Yes I did a lot of soaking during my childhood days just to remove these stamps frm their envelopes.

    @Nita - Thank you for the wonderful suggestion. You are indeed an artist. Your description is very clear and precise. Although before I tried framing them using a simple picture frame. I can't perfect the arrangment of the stamps though. I might consider help on how to arrange them in a frame.

    @Betsy - Hahaha I hope I made you happy for a moment with my experience with the post office lady.

    @Tia - You are right. Thanks.

    @Lavender Dreamer - Thanks for appreciating my humble collection.

  9. That is quite a nice collection of stamps you have there! Thank you for dropping by my blog today!

  10. That is a beautiful collection, Diane. I agree that it would be so nice to frame these beautiful works of art. I would frame them in groups in different size frames, but have the frames all the same color. Would be stunning. I'm also a new follower & maybe you'll follow back.

  11. Hi Diane! OH, my goodness, what a nice stamp collection you have! Love them and they are all so colorful.
    Thanks for popping in to see me. Will you get to come to my cupboard party next Tuesday? I sure hope so.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  12. While not a collector myself, I love that others like you honor and cherish these. I love the sense of history and time, place, and travel inherent in stamps. What hands touched them? Was the letter eagerly awaited? Lovingly sent? I love the colors and the thought behind the stamps themselves.

    Great blog. Looking forward to following you for more!

  13. Hi Diane!

    guess what? I used to collect stationery too! Even now I love looking at stickers, nice papers and such...
    Your stamp collection is amazing! You even have some from Germany - hang on to those, they're valuable because they are still old currency :)

    have a fabulous Friday,


    p.s. your comment about my mannequin made me smile! hahaha

  14. Wow! You should really revive your collection because they're lovely. How did you get the stamps from all the other countries? You even have one of Dominican Republic, it's so cool!

    When I was younger my mom collected stamps and she had a stamp album. She did not continue it though, and I dunno where it is now. Maybe I'll ask her about it and then I'll sell it to you. Hahahahahaha!

    I don't have collections... that matter. Like you, I tried collecting all sorts of things but I usually lose interest, somewhere along the way. I used to collect stationery too (who didn't?) then I collected softdrinks cans (and then my mom got mad already cus they got so many). I collected key chains from different countries, but I ended up using some, and then suddenly it didn't matter anymore. For years now, I have been collecting bills/notes from different countries.

    Nothing special, I told you.

  15. i used to collect stamps as a kid, and postcards, i know i still have them in storage somewhere...must look for them. have you tried quill for a stamp book? :)


Thank you for visiting my blog. Your comments make me happy. :)