London-based design studio NB has picked up one of 2019’s most fun commissions, being asked by Royal Mail to capture the unique spirit of some of the UK’s more weird and wonderful folk customs for an octet of stamps.
Created with the illustrative aid of artist Jonny Hannah, the Curious Customs collection celebrates a smattering of the unique and unusual events and ongoings that make these collection of little islands drifting around in the gunmetal grey of the North Sea such an odd place to inhabit.
The stamps feature everything from bog snorkelling contests in Wales to the world famous Gurning Championships which take place in Egremont, a small market town tucked away in the Lake District.
Other pictorial oddities that’ll find themselves affixed to all manner of correspondence include a cheese rolling competition and the frankly terrifying ‘Obby ‘Oss, an equine tradition which turns the coastal resort of Padstow into a Mayday riot of men dressed as horses.
Talking to Design Week, NB’s Harriet Payler says that they chose to work with Jonny Hannah because his lino-and-wood work “gets a lot of texture in there, and it’s handcrafted — almost like a folk project itself.”
The collection also comes with a map designed by Hannah and a poem written by Matt Harvey.
Folk fanatics with a penchant for postage can pick up the Curious Collection from their local Post Office right now.