Sunday, May 23, 2010

#278 Spain...Thanks Luciano!

The left m/s is from 2003 Constitution 25 Anniv. issue with inscription "Government and Administration" in lower left corner.

The Constitution of Spain is regarded as the culmination of the Spanish transition to democracy. It was enacted after a referendum on 6 December 1978 after approval by 88% of voters.

After the death of dictator Francisco Franco in 1975, a general election in 1977 convened the Constituent Cortes (the Spanish Parliament, in its capacity as a constitutional assembly) for the purpose of drafting and approving the constitution.

The Constitution came into effect on December 29, the day it was published in the Official Gazette. Constitution Day on December 6 has since been a national holiday in Spain.

As a result, Spain is now composed entirely of 17 Autonomous Communities and two autonomous cities with varying degrees of autonomy, to the extent that, even though the Constitution does not formally state that Spain is a federation (nor a unitarian state), actual power shows, depending on the issue considered, widely varying grades of decentralization, ranging from the quasi-confederal status of tax management in Navarre and the Basque Country to the total centralization in airport management.

The Spanish Constitution is one of the few Bill of Rights that has legal provisions for social rights, including the definition of Spain itself as a Social and Democratic State, subject to the rule of law (Sp. Estado social y democrático de derecho) in its preliminary title.

The right m/s is from the second series of Spanish Fashion issued in 2008 depicting haute couture outfits by the well known designer Pedro Rodriguez.

Considered to be a sculptor of fashion and one of the most famous couturiers of the XX century, Pedro Rodriguez (Valencia 1895- Barcelona 1990) devoted his long life to the art of dressing. As a boy he learned to make his first stitches in the best tailor’s shop in Barcelona and later on went on to work in Rabaseda’s atelier where he learnt all about women’s couture. In 1919 he set up his own atelier with his wife Ana María, a professional couturier and began his career in the world of haute couture setting up in 1924 his atelier in the Paseo de Gracia in Barcelona. In 1929 he showed his collections in the Palacio Nacional de Montjuich, coinciding with the Feria Internacional de Muestras and became the most important couturier of his time. In 1937 he opened a showroom in San Sebastián and two years later in Madrid. His collections were showed in the most important catwalks in Europe and America obtaining international recognition and his showrooms were visited by the high bourgeoisie, the aristocracy and famous American film stars. The arrival of the industrial quality clothing industry in the late 60’s began to slowly displace haute couture and forced Pedro Rodriguez, as well as other couturiers, to close down his atelier.

The souvenir sheet depicts, from left to right, a chiffon dress with dots and flowers with a V-neck and a bow at the nape,and a dress and coat in pink crepe. The coat has an embroidered strip with geometric motifs at the neck and cuffs. The images have been provided by the Museo del Traje (Dress Museum) in Madrid.

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