First Day Cover Collecting

A First Day Cover (FDC) is an envelope or postcard with a stamp that has been cancelled by the post office on the first day the stamp was issued. This traditionally involves getting a “First Day of Issue” postmark on the stamp on the respective date, however those rules have relaxed in the U.S., and now FDC collectors can send stamped envelopes to a Special Event Coordinator to get special “First Day of Issue” postmarks. Often first day of issue stamps are placed on special First Day Cover #6 envelopes or postcards, known as cachets, that commemorate the topic of the stamp.

American Circus First Day Cover Source: Larry Kellogg,

American Circus First Day Cover
Source: Larry Kellogg,

Collecting First Day Covers is fun for stamp collectors as it requires some participation…

First, you must be aware of the release schedule for new stamps if you plan to collect new First Day Covers. This USPS site is a good reference for U.S. stamps. Previously released First Day Covers can be found at stamp stores, antique stores and online.

Second, there are numerous topics for stamps and First Day Cover cachets. If you have a favorite theme, such as bird stamps, collecting FDCs of that theme can be fun and rewarding.

Third, getting an envelope franked with a “First Day of Issue” postmark in only done at the post office (or a special postal station) in one location traditionally. Often there’s a First Day Ceremony for a new stamp design. So if a stamp depicts a historical event, the location related to the historical event may host a First Day Ceremony. As an example, The Batman themed First Day Cover below was available at US Post Offices on October 9th, 2014 to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Caped Crusader. This stamp release was coordinated with the New York Comic Con, where the Post Office established a temporary postal station, Gotham City Station. Parcels cancelled at Gotham City Station received a special pictorial postmark, adding another interesting aspect for stamp collectors. As a service to stamp collectors not attending the New York Comic Con, the USPS allowed customers to mail envelopes or postcards with the adhered Batman stamp to a Special Event Coordinator in New York City and then the stamps receive the special First Day of Issue postmark and get mailed to the respective address.

Batman First Day Cover with pictorial postmark

Batman First Day Cover with pictorial postmark

BCW Supplies offer several items to protect, store and display First Day Cover envelopes and postcards:

First Day Cover Sleeves (hold #6 envelopes)

European First Day Cover Sleeves

Business Envelope Sleeves (hold #10 envelopes)

2-Pocket #10 Envelope Pages, 20-ct. Pkg., 100-ct. Box

Postcard Sleeves

Continental Postcard Sleeves

Postcard Storage Boxes

First Day Cover Topload Holder

First Day Cover Semi-Rigid Holders

See all of BCW’s Postcard and Envelope Supplies.

How to Safely Ship Your Collectibles

When it comes to shipping collectibles, take all of the necessary precautions to ensure the valuables are received in the same condition as when they left your home or business. Start with the proper shipping box or envelope. Typically you want a padded layer and a rigid layer. You may need a sturdy box and padding (bubble wrap, wadded paper, etc.) around the collectible. However the best solution may involve the padded layer on the outside with a rigid inner protector (such a padded envelop with a toploader enclosed). Whatever solution is best for your needs, make sure to use adequate padding and securely seal the parcel with packaging tape. Lastly, use legible, plain labeling for the address, following the proper postal system.

The United States Postal Service, UPS and FedEx are the main options for shipping collectibles in the US. Take the time to consider which service is the best for your needs. The delivery time and cost are the main factors. Check the price and delivery time using the forms on the delivery services’ websites (USPS, UPS, FedEx).

BCW Comic Shipper

BCW Comic Shipper

BCW offers several boxes designed for shipping collectibles:


The BCW Comic Book Shipper protects 10 comics that have been bagged & boarded (or 15 loose comics).

As an alternate mailer for comics, try the Shipper for Comics, Magazines, and Books.

A BCW 330 Box with Monster Pads

A BCW 330 Box with Monster Pads

Photo inserted in BCW 8x10 Toploader & padded envelope

Photo inserted in 8×10 sleeve, toploader & padded envelope

BCW 33RPM Record Mailer

BCW 33RPM Record Mailer


If you are just sending a few cards, BCW Topload Card Holders are an affordable way to ship the cards. We always recommend you place your card in a sleeve first. Then, place the sleeved card in the proper toploader. Place the toploader in a BCW Resealable Team Set Bag to ensure the card stays in the toploader. Lastly, put the card in padded envelop and ship it.

If you need to send lots of cards, BCW offers many sizes of card boxes that work well for shipping. As always, sleeve your cards to avoid getting any scratches during deliver. BCW Monster Pads work well to cushion the cards and keep them from moving inside the box.


Similar to the trading cards, BCW offers sleeves and toploaders for larger photos and documents. We have sizes for almost any need. As with the cards, first place your photo in a sleeve to prevent any chance of a scratch. Then place the sleeved photo in the correct toploader. Place the toploader in a padded envelop and ship.


If you need to send any vinyl records, BCW has sturdy wrap mailers designed for 33 RPM and 45 RPM records. See all of BCW’s supplies to protect records.

BCW Wholesale Partners – if you ship BCW products, we offer boxes designed specifically to protect our supplies. Sign-in to your BCW wholesale account and then search “shipper” to see the options.


Protecting & Displaying Collectible Tickets

Do you collect tickets or ticket stubs? Perhaps you save the tickets from the big games, concerts, and other events you’ve attended. Maybe you collect tickets you find at the antique mall – vintage circus tickets, cruise line or railroad passes, Super Bowl tickets – whatever interests you. Whether a ticket is from a historical event or your first concert, keeping these momentos is s fun hobby!

What tickets have you collected over the years?

Please share in the comments below.

US Grand Prix tickets in a BCW 3-Pocket Photo Pages

US Grand Prix tickets in a BCW 3-Pocket Photo Pages

Finding a good way to store your tickets is important so you can preserve and display them easily. As tickets come in various sizes, and tickets are often torn by the ticket taker, having solutions to store various sizes is needed.

Pages & Albums

One solution is to store your tickets in a 3-ring binder with protective pages. BCW offers archival-safe pages with pockets of various sizes. Below are the options.

Page Description Pocket Dimensions Product Links
20-Pocket Pages 1 9/16″ x 2 3/4″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
20-Pocket Pages – 2x2s 2 1/8″ x 2 1/8″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
9-Pocket Pages – Top Loading 2 5/8″ x 3 9/16″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
9-Pocket Pages – Side Loading 2 5/8″ x 3 9/16″ 20 Page Pkg. n/a
8-Pocket Pages 2 3/4″ x 4 1/8″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
6-Pocket Pages 2 5/8″ x 5 9/16″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
4-Pocket Pages – Photo 3 15/16″ x 5 1/2″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
4-Pocket Pages – Currency 2 3/4″ x 6 3/4″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
3-Pocket Pages – Photo 4 1/8″ x 6 1/8″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
3-Pocket Pages – Currency 3 5/8″ x 8 1/16″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
2-Pocket Pages – Photo 5 7/16″ x 7 1/8″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box
2-Pocket Pages – Envelope 4 1/4″ x 11 1/4″ 20 Page Pkg. 100 Page Box


See all BCW Pages and 3-Ring Binders

Savoy Brown / ZZ Top ticket from 1973

Savoy Brown & ZZ Top (1973) ticket in an acrylic card holder

Sleeves & Holders

If you do not like the 3-ring binder solution and want to save your tickets individually, BCW offers protective sleeves and holders. Originally designed for trading cards, these supplies work great for tickets and other small documents. Our small sleeves are made of clear, archival-safe polypropylene and protect the tickets while handling. For a rigid protection method, use a BCW card holder. Both the sleeves and holders come in various sizes. When choosing a holder, the closing method is also an important consideration (toploading, snap close, screw-down, etc.).





Big 12 Football Championship commemorative ticket

commemorative ticket in a 3″ x 7″ toploader

Toploading Ticket Holders

Toploading holders are an economical way to store individual tickets. While BCW offers many sizes of toploaders, our 3″ x 7″ toploader is specifically designed for commemorative tickets. See all of our toploaders.

Semi-Rigid Ticket Holders are another affordable method to protect tickets individually.