Christmas 2017

Release date: 1 November 2017

Each year, we release Christmas stamps that celebrate the Christmas holiday as we know it in Australia today, spanning both traditional and secular themes.

The two traditional designs from the Christmas 2017 stamp issue each feature a painting of the Madonna and Child projected onto the façade of St Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney. Every Christmas since 2010, the cathedral has been host to the Lights of Christmas, a digital animated light and sound display that illuminates the church with themes of peace, joy and goodwill. This public event, by AGB Events, has proved very popular, and in 2016 attracted a crowd of around 300,000 people. The stamps were designed by Andrew Hogg Design.

The three secular-themed stamps were designed by Jo Muré of the Australia Post Design Studio. The bright and graphic imagery also presents the themes of joy and goodwill, via carefully wrapped gifts, cheerful chiming bells and a star-spangled Christmas tree.

The stamps

65c Madonna and Child

The 65c Christmas-card-rate stamp shows a projection from the 2013 Lights of Christmas display. The painting is a copy of a now lost work by Italian artist Roberto Ferruzzi (1853–1934). The much loved original painting, known as the Madonnina or the Madonna of the Streets, was awarded a major prize at the 1897 Venice Biennale. Often reproduced as a devotional image, it survives in countless copies.

$2.30 Small Cowper Madonna

The $2.30 international-rate stamp shows the Small Cowper Madonna by Renaissance artist Raphael (1483–1520). This work, projected onto the cathedral in 2014, was painted in oil on panel around 1505. The painting is in the collection of the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, USA. Another Renaissance artist, Carlo Crivelli (ca. 1430–1495), painted the Madonna and Child on the minisheet. Painted in tempera on panel ca. 1482–3, this work is now in the Accademia Carrara in Bergamo, Italy.

65c Christmas tree

This Christmas-card-rate stamp features a graphic illustration of a shiny star-spangled Christmas tree.

65c Gifts

This Christmas-card-rate stamp features a graphic illustration of bow-topped Christmas gifts.

$2 Bells

This international-Christmas-card-rate stamp features chiming festive bells.

All of these designs are available as Personalised Stamps™.


Additional products

  • Stamp pack
  • Embellished sheetlet pack
  • Minisheet (religious)
  • First day cover (gummed, minisheet)
  • Maxicards
  • Postal numismatic cover
  • Booklets of 20 x 65c
  • Sheetlet of 5 x $2
  • Sheetlet of 5 x $2.30

Technical specifications

  • Issue date

    1 November 2017
  • FDI withdrawal date

    29 November 2017
  • Denominations

    3 x 65c, 1 x $2, 1 x $2.30
  • Stamp and minisheet design (religious)

    Andrea Hogg Design
  • Stamp design (secular)

    Jo Muré
  • Product design

    Jo Muré
  • Printer (religious)

    RA Printing
  • Printer (secular)

  • Paper gummed (religious & secular)

    Tullis Russell Red Phos
  • Paper s-a (religious)

    Securepost MC 90
  • Paper s-a (secular)

    Securepost 90 for booklets and embellished sheetlet. Avery Dennison for sheetlet of 5.
  • Printing process

    Offset lithography
  • Stamp size

    26mm x 37.5mm
  • Minisheet size

    130mm x 80mm
  • Perforations

    14.6 x 13.8
  • Sheet layout

    Module of 50
  • FDI postmark

    Merrylands, NSW 2160
  • Issue withdrawal date

    31 May 2018
*This content was produced at the time of the stamp issue release date and will not be updated.

Philatelic team