Sunday, May 6, 2012

What is a Deltiologist?

Deltiology is the official term for collecting (and studying) postcards. The third largest hobby after collecting stamps and money, collecting postcards can be a very rewarding pastimethat can be as broad or as narrow as you'd like, and can be undertaken absolutely anywhere in the world. Even Queen Victoria is thought to have had her own postcard collection, so it's certainly a hobby that has both pedigree and time behind it.

If you're keen to do something with the postcards you've got stashed at home or you're wondering whether or not to indulge in buying them every time you're traveling or sightseeing, perhaps deltiology will open up a new world of collecting for you.

Decide how you will approach collecting postcards. The breadth of postcards is so wide that it's probably a good idea to develop your focus early on to avoid having box loads of unsorted postcards and not knowing what to do with them all. Postcards can be collected in many ways but some of the most common approaches are as follows:

Postcards by a particular artist.
Postcards from a particular location or country.
Postcards dating from a particular time.
Postcards with a particular theme such as a specific animal like a cat or wildlife, structures such as tall buildings or bridges, natural wonders such as waterfalls or canyons, household items such as teapots, artwork from museum collections, transport such as trains, trams or planes, beach scenes, Valentine's Day, Christmas, Star Trek, etc. (the possibilities are endless).
Postcards that are humorous, cheeky (risque) or have cartoons on them.

If you have a particular interest, consider collecting postcards related to that interest. For example, if you love horses, then postcards of horses will always appeal to you. All sorts of interests like ballet, rugby, board games, aircraft spotting, museums, dinosaurs, weapons, food, alcohol, etc., are likely to be found on postcards in one way of another. This can add a very interesting dimension to postcard collecting that will bolster your love of your other interest in a unique way.

Some people only collect postcards when they travel. Given the great photos that professional photographers can take of a place you're visiting, it can be a good way to ensure that you have at least one really good photo of the place you've visited! It's also helpful to get postcards that depict different seasons or weather than what you're experiencing on your visit.

The above was taken from an article at