For years, the Scott International “Big Blue” was not on my radar. As a young collector in the late 1970s, I had everything I needed. Hinges. Approvals from H.E. Harris and Company. One stock book. The Harris Statesman album.
It wasn’t long – maybe about when I hit 11 or 12- that my mother decided I was suitably serious enough about stamp collecting to warrant a subscription to Linn’s Stamp News. Through those pages, I first discovered the Scott albums, including the “Big Blue” Scott International albums.
At that time, except for birthday and Christmas gifts, stamp collecting was self-funded, and as a kid, that was basically lawn-mowing money. So, the big fancy albums were just out. And that was ok. While I did feel like my Statesman was a “junior” or “starter” album, it didn’t bother me until many years later.
I have a few collecting areas today that are housed in different ways.
My Coast Guard postal history is stored in Vario Pages.
My Ireland stamp collection is mounted on White Ace pages – beautiful!
My Scouts on Stamps collection is all over the place. I have the stamps stored in Vario pages. The covers are in a couple of traditional first-day cover albums. Souvenir Sheets are in yet another album, as are stamps and souvenir sheets specific to the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts.
There are hodgepodge items kept in stock books or Vario pages.
Then there’s my worldwide collection, which makes its home in six (currently) Scott International “Big Blue” albums.
Other specialized collections have, over time, been folded into my Internationals. I have/had a collection of dead countries, newspaper stamps, and Haiti. All are now housed in my Big Blues.
I debated for years. Do I use Big Blue or something else? I vacillated quite a bit, thinking stock books, then the old Harris Citation albums, and even at one point, Minkus Supreme Global.
Honestly, I can’t explain it. There is something neat and orderly about the Scott International albums. I don’t collect to the album, rather, I add Scott International quadrille pages if needed. But I like albums. Heavy, yes, but I enjoy pulling them off the shelf, looking through them, and adding stamps.
And the Big Blue Blog makes a great – and affordable – resource for a collector using those albums.
The enjoyment and satisfaction overcome any of the legitimate concerns people might have with the album, and that’s enough for me.