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Santa Claus with Book

Sparkling Holidays - Haddon Sundblom

Stamp Info

Name Value
Date of Issue October 11, 2018
Year 2018
Quantity 1,000,000
Denomination
First-Class Mail Forever
Denomination Value $0.50
Perforation or Dimension 1.225 x 1.56 in./31.115 x 39.624 mm
Series Sparkling Holidays - Haddon Sundblom
Series Time Span 2018
Issue Location Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Postal Administration United States

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Layouts

Souvenir Sheet

Quantity Produced - 1,000,000
Original Purchase Price: $0.50
SKU: 566304
Perforation: Simulated Perforation
Dimension: 3.75 x 3.75 in./95.25 x 95.25 mm
Printer: Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. (APU)
Printing Process: Offset, Microprint
Gum Type: Pressure-sensitive
Tagging: Block Tag
Paper: Nonphosphored Type III

About Stamp

On October 11, 2018, in Pigeon Forge, TN, the U.S. Postal Service® will issue the Sparkling Holidays Souvenir Sheet (Forever® priced at the First-Class Mail® rate) in one design, in a pressure-sensitive adhesive souvenir sheet of one stamp. The stamp will go on sale October 11, 2018.

Celebrate the holidays with the Sparkling Holidays Souvenir Sheet. The artwork features a detail of a Haddon Sundblom painting originally published in an ad for The Coca-Cola Company in 1963. The souvenir sheet features an iconic holiday scene of Santa Claus visiting a home on Christmas Eve and showcases one stamp, a semi-jumbo version of one of the four special-sized stamps featured in the Sparkling Holidays booklet of 20. The stamp itself features Santa‘s face and hat with one hand holding a book and the other adjusting his glasses.

The souvenir-sheet format offers the opportunity to see more of Sundblom’s entire painting. In it, Santa is depicted standing by a fireplace holding a book that lists good boys and girls. Three Christmas stockings hang along the mantel, which is decorated with greens and ornaments. Peering over his glasses, Santa reads a printed note that says “Dear Santa Please Pause Here” and is signed “Jimmy.” Below the image the words “Sparkling Holidays” have been added; the vintage-inspired typography is printed with gold metallic ink.

A quatrefoil design element surrounded by a metallic gold background encloses the scene. The flow of the type and the organic shape of the border are intended to harken back to the graphic style of the first half of the twentieth century.

The Dutch Sinterklaas, inspired by St. Nicholas, a bishop from Turkey, was one of Santa’s forebearers. Sinterklaas delivered gifts on December 5, the eve of St. Nicholas’s feast day. Several 19th-century works were instrumental in creating the Santa we know today. These include the famous poem “A Visit From St. Nicholas,” better known by its first line, “'Twas the Night Before Christmas.” St. Nick was described as a jolly, plump elf who delivers presents on Christmas Eve, traveling on a sleigh pulled by eight flying reindeer. Cartoonist Thomas Nast further added to Santa’s appearance in his drawings for the magazine Harper’s Weekly.

Sundblom is the man credited with refining the modern image of Santa Claus. In 1931, Sundblom created the first of his more than 40 paintings of Santa Claus for The Coca-Cola Company’s holiday advertising campaign. The paintings of the rosy-cheeked, smiling, grandfatherly man in his red suit came to embody the very essence of “Santa.”

Art director Greg Breeding designed the Sparkling Holidays Souvenir Sheet with existing art by Sundblom.The Sparkling Holidays semi-jumbo stamp is being issued as a Forever® stamp. This Forever stamp will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail® one-ounce price.

About Stamp Series

On October 11, 2018, in Pigeon Forge, TN, the U.S. Postal Service® will issue the Sparkling Holidays stamps (Forever® priced at the First-Class Mail® rate) in four designs, in a pressure-sensitive adhesive booklet of 20 stamps. The stamps will go on sale nationwide October 11, 2018.

The U.S. Postal Service® celebrates Christmas with four stamps featuring classic images of Santa Claus painted by famed commercial artist Haddon Sundblom. Each stamp portrays a close-up of Santa’s face; the four images are details from larger paintings created by Sundblom and originally published in ads for The Coca-Cola Company from the 1940s through the early 1960s.

Santa’s legend is based on customs brought to America by European immigrants. St. Nicholas, the Dutch Sinterklaas, was one of Santa’s forebearers; he delivered gifts on December 5, the eve of his feast day.

Several 19th-century works were instrumental in creating the legend and look that inspired Sundblom’s paintings. In 1809, author Washington Irving portrayed the gift-bearing St. Nicholas as a sage Dutchman rather than a somber bishop. The 1821 poem “The Children’s Friend” claimed that “Santeclaus” delivered toys to good girls and boys while riding in a sleigh drawn by a flying reindeer. Several years later, the poem “A Visit From St. Nicholas” had the jolly, plump elf delivering presents on Christmas Eve, traveling on a sleigh pulled by eight flying reindeer, each of which were named.

Cartoonist Thomas Nast embellished Santa’s look in his drawings for the magazine Harper’s Weekly. Beginning in 1863, the published engravings depicted Santa in all manner of guises, from a portly elfin figure to a big-bellied, white-bearded man.

Haddon Sundblom is the man credited with refining the modern image of Santa Claus. In 1931, Sundblom created the first of his more than 40 paintings of Santa Claus for The Coca-Cola Company’s holiday advertising campaign. The paintings of the rosy-cheeked, smiling, grandfatherly man in his red suit came to embody the very essence of “Santa.”

Art director Greg Breeding designed the stamps with existing art by Sundblom.

The Sparkling Holidays stamps are being issued as Forever® stamps. These Forever stamps will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail® one-ounce price.

Colors

PMS 872 Gold, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black

Creators

Art Director: Greg Breeding, Charlottesville, VA.
Designer: Greg Breeding, Charlottesville, VA.
Typographer: Greg Breeding, Charlottesville, VA.
Existing Art: Haddon Sundblom.
Modeler: Joseph Sheeran.

Similar Stamps

Reference

USPS Postal Bulletin 22502. Copyright: USPS.

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