edited November 23 in Questions 0 LikesVote Down
Should I salvage the selvedge if it's blank? Does it add anything to leave it on; does it diminish the item to remove it?


  • 4 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • I will almost always try and preserve it depending on the particular stamp of course and the condition of the selvage (if it really detracts). I try and leave it to the collector to decide if they want to remove it. If you remove it, how would anyone know?
  • Robert,
    Interesting question there. Selvage of some stamps, particularly where there is a variant of paper type, can be very useful in reference collections. One that comes to mind is the US Franklin-Washington "Bluish Paper" (which is more gray than blue if you ask me), BUT, these issues can be pricey, and if you want something to compare to other stamps of that issue, it can be very handy to have such an item in your reference collection. There are certainly other paper types this might apply to.

    Now in general if the selvage is blank (and it's a modern stamp in particular), then you will find most collectors will shy away from it because it doesn't fit standard mounts. Some will, but there is typically no premium allocated with it.
    If, however, the selvage has any identifying element (the plate number the printers imprint, sometimes a star on some issues), then this selvage is important because it tells something about the stamp's position, and identifies something about the printing of that sheet. So those can be highly sought after, and never removed.

    I would also suggest if the stamp is pre-1900, any selvage should be left. It, again, will give some indication of the stamps position (left, right, top, bottom) even if blank.
  • Robert,
    Selvage can be useful on certain modern Watermarked stamps, Especially British Commonwealth items. Scott is right to say leave it on and let the buyer decide if they want it.
  • Thank you everyone for your thoughtful comments.
    I can now rest assured...
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