Gardenias blooming early for wedding season

It’s only January, but Canada Post has unveiled its latest flower stamps, these featuring the gardenia, ahead of their release on Valentine’s Day.

The new issue is available for pre-order now – two weeks before its Feb. 14 release date – in booklets of 10 stamps; coils of 50 stamps; four- and 10-stamp strips; and a two-stamp souvenir sheet. The two stamp designs feature the fragrant Cape jasmine gardenia (Gardenia jasminoides). The booklet also contains 10 matching envelope seals as a “finishing touch for invitations to weddings, showers and other events,” according to the Crown corporation’s latest issue of Details.

Known as a way of expressing affection during shy Victorian times, gardenias are today a symbol of purity.

“This issue is a harbinger of spring and a very, very strong seller for consumer mail and weddings,” said Canada Post Director of Stamp Services Jim Phillips, who added this stamp has “a very big print run that’s always among the biggest next to our definitives and Christmas stamps.”

An official first-day cover was cancelled in Flower’s Cover, N.L.

WEDDING SEASON

Typically issued in March, the flower stamps are scheduled to bloom early this year in an effort to meet the needs of the upcoming wedding season, Phillips said.

“It’s one of the top 10 flowers for couples planning weddings, and we want to hit wedding season. It’s popular with love, too, so we thought Valentine’s Day would be an interesting time to issue it.”

Designed by Andrew Conlon and Lionel Gadoury, of Context Creative, and with art by Chantal Larocque, the stamps measure 26 millimetres by 32 millimetres.

In addition to 800,000 booklets of 10 stamps, 75,000 souvenir sheets measuring 127 millimetres by 78 millimetres; 130,000 50-stamp coils measuring 20 millimetres by 24 millimetres; and 7,000 official first-day covers measuring 190 millimetres by 112 millimetres will be produced.

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