Japan, Year of the Rabbit, 1951

I came across this charming stamp a few years ago at a stamp show and just adore it. Though it celebrates the Year of the Rabbit, it reminds me of spring and Easter as well, so I thought it might be a nice time to share it with you. 

I found one reference crediting this stamp’s design to Saburo Watanabe. I’m wondering if this is the same illustrator of the 1967 Japanese children’s book The Rolling Rice Ball, soon to be reprinted by Kaisei-Sha. I will be investigating this further, as I’m always fascinated by the connection between stamp design and children’s illustration.

Japan, Year of the Snake Stamp, 1989


Happy Year of the Snake guys! Today in the stamp drawer we have a stamp issued by Japan in 1989 to honor the Year of the Earth Snake. (We have just entered the Year of the Water Snake.) Best wishes to all of you! In related astrological philatelic news, don’t miss the stamp I designed last month to commemorate the Chinese New Year :) 

Year of the Snake Stamp by Erica Sirotich


Howdy my philatelic friends! This morning in the stamp drawer is my very first stamp design, commemorating the upcoming Chinese New Year! I’m looking forward to entering the Year of the Snake—mainly because I’ll get to go enjoy San Francisco’s Chinese New Year Parade (which is always awesome) and, well, because I really like drawing snakes! I have a mighty good excuse to draw even more snakes than usual this year!

For this design I tried to play with a limited palette; simple, hand drawn shapes; a no frills typeface (Futura) and a nice, papery texture overlay to give the design an authentic, stamp-ish feel. I quite like how it came out! 

See the design a bit larger here. Thanks for visiting and do stay tuned for more stamps and original stamp designs!