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Tips to beginners

How to start collecting stamps?

Sources:

As with any hobby, there are some supplies you'll need to get started with a stamp collection.

  • Look at the letters you receive at home each day. Many will have a stamp on them.
  • Ask your friends and family to save stamps for you from their mail.
  • Ask your relatives living abroad to affix nice stamps on mail they send to you.
  • Exchange stamps with other friends or stamp collectors.
  • Be a member of philatelic club or association and exchange or buy surplus material of other members.
  • Buy stamps from post offices / philatelic bureaux / philatelic counters or from stamp dealers.

What to collect?

You could collect stamps from one or two countries or by choosing one or two of your favorite subjects. Many beginners choose a subject like art, history, sports, transportation, science or animals as the theme of their collection. This is called thematic or topical collecting.

Some popular theme/subjects are :

    Agriculture
    Europa
    Photography
    Airplanes
    Flags
    Plants
    Amphibians
    Flora & Fauna
    Roses
    Antiques
    Fossils
    Rotary International
    Ammunitions
    Fruits
    Red Cross
    Bicycles
    Hands
    Religions
    Bridges
    Health
    Reptiles
    Butterfly
    History Radio
    Botany
    Industry
    Railways
    Chemistry
    Motor Vehicles
    Ships
    Christmas
    Music
    Theatre
    Communications
    Milk
    Transportation
    Culture
    Olympic Games
    Tourism
    Costumes
    Personalities
    Water
    Dogs
    Peace
    Weather
    Education Paintings and many many more....

Few examples of thematic stamps:

    Butterfly
    Butterfly
    Butterfly
    Butterfly
    Gandhi
    Gandhi
    Gandhi
    Gandhi
    Lion
    Elephant
    Tiger
    Animals

Accessories required:

Few accessories are needed in order to begin a stamp collection.

  • Stamp album or stock book to preserve and arrange your stamps. Use good quality stock books. Make sure to keep the stamps and stamp albums away from moisture, warm areas, and light.
  • Stock Book
    Arranging Stamps in Stock Book
    Arranging Stamps in Stock Book with help of tweezer
  • A pair of tweezers will be needed for handling your stamps. It will prevent fingerprints, sweat or grease from getting on the stamp. Condition of the stamp has a large impact on its value.
  • A magnifying glass, or loupe, is one of the most important tools for any stamp collector. It is used to examine a stamp for faults, as well as for the examination of minute printing details, sometimes necessary for correctly attributing a stamp.
    • Tweezer
      Arranging Stamps in Stock Book
      Tweezer and varieties of Magnifying Glasses
      • Other essential tools you will need are stamp hinges or mounts, glassine envelopes, watermark detector, a perforation gauge, a stamp catalog for the particular area being collected.

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