The press sheets that the USPS produces are quite large. Collecting singles or positional pieces (such as cross gutter blocks) will fit into standard stamp albums. But what if you want to collect the entire sheet? They are very large and will never fit into a stamp album.

I donít remember where I saw this at, but someone who is collecting the press sheets wrote a letter to the Editor and mentioned that they are using oversize art portfolio cases. These cases are about 24 by 25 inches in size. Artists use them to transport their oversize drawings to client offices or school. They have a zipper on 3 sides which allows them to lay flat as you unzip them and pull out the artwork (or press sheets in this case).

Some of these cases may have built in, thick, acid-free, cardboard dividers so that the oversize contents arenít wrinkled during transport. Thereby protecting your press sheets. If cardboard dividers are not provided, you could purchase them separately.

I looked on the Internet and I saw a variety of portfolio cases offered for about $50 to $100. That makes them kind of expensive. But if it means protecting your press sheets, I think the cost is justified. You could purchase these over the Internet or if you have access to a local art supply store, they should carry these portfolios or be able to order them for you.

Someone may suggest that buying inexpensive round mailing tubes to store the press sheets is an option. I donít think that is ideal for several reasons.

First of all, you probably donít want to put more than one sheet in a round tube at a time. Putting two or more sheets in a tube at one time means that other sheets could suffer damage when other sheets are removed or added to the tube.

If you only put one sheet per tube as I suggest, youíre going to need a lot of tubes if you collect many press sheets. This takes up a lot of space. I contend that the art portfolio case I mentioned is more compact.

Iím also not sure that storing press sheets in a curled up format for a long period of time is a wise choice. As you know now, full mint panes of stamps that are 50+ years old become brittle over time. Handling of these mint panes must be done with care so that the perforations donít separate.

If you store press sheets curled up, that is how the paper is going to settle. Years from now, the sheets could easily separate or become damaged if you try to uncurl them. Therefore, I think flat storage is the safest option and an art portfolio case allows you to do that.

If you collect the full size press sheets, good luck and have fun!