Watch CBS News

Meet the Brooklyn artist who designed a new USPS Forever stamp

Meet the artist who designed millions of Brooklyn-inspired stamps
Meet the artist who designed millions of Brooklyn-inspired stamps 02:20

NEW YORK - Millions of stamps designed by a celebrated New York City artist are decorating postage envelopes circulating across the United States.

Brooklyn neighborhood inspires floral painter Kim Parker

A spring stroll through the brownstone-lined streets in Carroll Gardens is enough to understand why flowers are always on Kim Parker's mind. 

"The garden for me is a metaphor for a community," she tells CBS New York's Hannah Kliger.

Birds chirp and lilacs bloom as she sits down with her paintbrush. Within minutes, the buds and blossoms on the paper reflect the aptly named neighborhood outside her front door.

"For a floral painter, right, pretty much you're in your element. And I take walks, I call them flower walks, with my husband and my dog," she says.

Artist Kim Parker approached to design Forever stamps  

A classically trained flutist – Parker, an artist, designer and teacher, decided instead to lean into her love of painting. She turned it into a career that spans more than 30 years, best known for the vibrant floral prints that decorate the clothing, tableware and furnishings of her home. 

"After many, many jobs in different aspects of the fashion industry, I decided to go in my early 30s out on my own, and I formed my own design studio, Kim Parker Designs, where I was selling namelessly, my own floral patterns and geometric patterns and stripe patterns on silk and paper to the entire fashion industry," she says.

Her designs made it to many big box retailers, into hospitals, films and TV shows.

Last April, the United States Postal Service approached her to design two of this year's new stamps. 

Panes of bright flowers in ink and gouache paint was the result. A two-ounce stamp called "Wedding Blooms," and the "Celebration Blooms" design is now on a Forever stamp. 

USPS says more than 250 million of these stamps have been printed so far, and they're designed to send a subtle message of joy. 

Next time you receive a special piece of mail, you may have a tiny Brooklyn garden on the upper right corner. 

Have a story idea or tip in Brooklyn? Email Hannah by CLICKING HERE.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.