Sticky Swiss stamps!

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10 August 2023
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Swiss Post are celebrating the invention of Velcro with a unique miniature sheet

When George de Mestral saw little green balls – known as burrs – stuck to his trousers and his dog’s fur after a walking trip, he wondered if the sticky plant could be used for more practical purposes.

The engineer turned to his microscope to figure out where the plant’s adhesive property came from and made a discovery: the burrs had tiny elastic hooks. He made use of this principle to try to perfect a new type of textile fastener. After months of work, he had the solution: a ribbon with hooks and another facing it with loops – the hook and loop fastener, better known by many by it’s brand name Velcro. His invention wasn’t an immediate success, but became a household item decades later, thanks in part to the use of hook and loop fasteners on the suits used on the 1969 moon landings. 

Now, Swiss Post are celebrating the invention with a unique miniature sheet which features it’s own square of Velcro. The stamp shows perhaps the most popular use of the invention, the Velcro strap on a child’s shoe.

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Issue date: 7 September; www.post.ch