Louise Fili – “Love” Stamp

Louise Fili took up her biggest, smallest trim size of anything she had ever designed in 2012. Jessica Helfand, a design consultant at the Postmaster General’s Citizen’s Stamp Advisory Committee invited Fili to design a new edition to the “Love” stamp series for the US Postal Service. This series of stamps started with a stamp designed by Robert Indiana in 1973. From then on, each year a new Love stamp is designed and sold by the USPS.

At first, this project intimidated Fili, how could she design a small little representation of something so large, such as love?  Despite this initial uncertainty, Fili took on the challenge. Making the stamp part of a single unit, and as repeat pattern on a sheet of stamps, intrigued her. She pictured each stamp as a mini poster to begin sketching ideas, and then brainstorming different typographic treatments. This led Fili to imaging the word “love” made out of flowing ribbons.

This is one of Fili’s later pieces, yet it still represents Fili’s vintage style with a modern twist. She still utilized her signature hand-designed fonts with “forever” and “USA”, yet added a new twist with the ribbon-defined letters of the word love. The gradient of the ribbon tones has a modern flare while the script typeface creates a vintage vibe. Fili also added additional ribbon pieces for decoration. Nothing too superfluous, but just enough to make the design look complete, something she does best.

Fili’s “Love” stamp is one of her newer, most notable works. Its ornate yet simple design reflects Fili’s design aesthetic while producing an appeal to the viewer. Even though the design is small and simple, it’s ease and elegance makes it intriguing and unique. It is also a step away from Fili’s food-centered designs, making it a distinctive piece among the rest of her work. As the very last work displayed before the credits in Louise Fili’s book, Elegantissima: The Design & Typography of Louise Fili, it left a lasting impression on me personally, as a viewer of Fili’s work, and I had to include it as her last piece I discussed in this assignment.