Good Tidings, Besties. Welcome to the next instalment of ‘Behind the Stationary’ with Pulp. In today’s Blogisode, we look into an everyday, often overseen object: the sticker.
Hold on to your hats, kind folk; this narrative starts with the Ancient Egyptians. Again. The Powers That Be believe that the first stickers may date back to Ye Olde Egypt, as archaeologists have found remains of papers plastered to walls of ancient markets to display prices of goods. Mummified price tags - what next?
Well, ink stamps, that’s what. They were used in the United Kingdom from 1661. It was invented by a chap called Henry Bishop, the Postmaster General of England. The idea was that by postmarking the date on letters were sent, it would ensure that they would not be delayed. They literally called this practice ‘The Bishop Mark’.
Then, a few eras later, in 1839, on the other side of the Pond, Sir Rowland Hill invented adhesive. Yup, glue. This opened the doors for more whimsical uses for sticking little bits of paper to stuff. Sir Rowland was also a steadfast campaigner for the postal service and wanted to make sending and tracking letters more efficient. Mail Core, or what!? You see, sending mail back in the day was “a matter of haphazard local organization” " i.e., total chaos.
Anywho, those trusty ink stamps had a good stint as the standard practice in the postal service in the UK for a while. Still, it was eventually decided that they were not efficient enough, and that’s when the American “Rowland-style” self-adhesive paper postage stamp was introduced. They started as stamps that had to be licked to activate the ‘stickiness’, then later evolved to peel-off backings to make things a tad easier on the tastebuds. Nom!
Yup, postage stamps were the first unofficial stickers. They literally facilitated - and still do- the written word to travel worldwide. Way before Email. Way before texting. Way before ChapGpt.
(Side note: If the “Bishop mark" type of stamp is more your bag, we sell some cool ink, rotating print stamps and stamp notebooks in-store and online. Honestly, the kids will thank you for a proper post office/admin make-believe prop!)
But what about stickers just for fun? In 1935, the inventor R. Stanton Avery made a machine to produce self-sticking labels. By the 1960s, stickers were a cultural norm, and another dude (why are they all dudes?) invented the awesomeness that is Scratch’n’ Sniff stickers - by accident, no less!
If this kind of whimsy floats your boat (and why wouldn’t it), Pulp has a steady supply of stickers without an agenda. Stickers that simply put a smile on your face, prettify your personal items, embellish, adorn and decorate your car’s bumper and back window.
Let’s face it: the world would not be the same without them. You want ‘em? We got ‘em. Our stickers are beautiful little works of art, like mini posters you can put anywhere. Zazz up your laptop, glow up your drink bottle, or express uniqueness by covering your skateboard, folders, notebooks, or anything that could use a little ‘je ne sais quoi’ (French for ‘I Don’t Know What’). You name it, you can ‘I Don’t Know What’ it with our stickers.
Dailylike Hologram Stickers in Unicorn, Under the Sea and Smile themes are perfect for a kid’s lunchbox. Yuzen stickers in heart, star and butterfly shapes are made from Japanese washi paper. They can be used for all manner of things: to embellish letters and handmade cards or even to stick on home windows to ensure nobody tries to walk through glass doors (the problem exists, trust me).
The Midori Sticker collection in heart, star, raindrop, sparkle and flower shapes are iridescent ‘pearly’ stickers with more rigidity than the standard paper sticker; more like a ‘bedazzler’ of a sticker, they can be used as a special ‘gilding’ of whatever you choose to place them on.
Finally, The Pepin Press Label and Sticker Books contain 32 pages of beautifully patterned stickers (250, to be precise!) of all shapes and sizes to use for anything your heart desires.
So come take a look at our sticker collection, add some to your own, and stay tuned for next week’s foray into another fascinating look at all things paper, writing and creating. Almost certainly involving Ancient Egyptian Civilization…