A letter-writing blog extolling the virtues of snail mail:
old-fashioned postal paper mail and all of its varied accessories.
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Pink Panther fold and mail
Behold, one of the designs from the lovely Pink Panther fold and mail set by Chronicle Books. It's been out of stock on their website for ages, and methinks it may be discontinued, but I've snatched up a wee stash from a variety of sundry sources.
That's my feisty kitty Magic on the little Moo sticker. I find that the glue on these puppies isn't the best, and reinforcing with a couple of stickers is a good idea, just to make sure it completes the postal journey intact.
Friday, February 27, 2009
More Emily with black cats
Another beloved Emily the Strange fold-and-mail, Emily's Black Mail from Chronicle Books. I love the cute-yet-dark feel, plus the black cats.
My own feisty kitty, Magic, is featured with jack-o-lantern on the photo stamp.
I sent this in response to a lovely item I got from a fellow fountain pen user, who had seen me both on The Fountain Pen Network and sendsomething.net. What a fun surprise! Unexpected mail is its own special joy.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Frame of vintage stamps
A letter to my cousin, using a bunch of our grandpa's old stamps.
I guess it runs in the family to appreciate old things - my cousin digs the stamps as much as I do. So I try to use the extra-special ones on letters to him.
I don't know what the two-stamp space 5-cent stamps are really worth (more than face value for a sheet, I'd speculate), but I think they are deeply awesome.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Old Niagara Falls postcard
Just a wee old postcard with wild colors of Niagara Falls. With a couple of my pen pals, including this one, we've gotten into a groove of writing both letters and postcards. I really dig it.
The colors on this postcard are awesome. I'm no pro on dating vintage illustration, but my guess would place this one in the 50s or 60s??
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Finally found it: Hallmark 1979 Muppet Show Stationery
For a stationery hound with a Muppet obsession like me, this 1979 Hallmark Muppet Show stationery is like the holy grail. Man oh man. I trolled eBay for quite some time hoping this puppy would show up.
It's like Muppet meta - they're writing letters! I would like to note for the record that Kermit is clearly left-handed. I have a few Muppet notepads from this era (yeah yeah, to be photographed and posted "one of these days"), and it also shows Kermit as a leftie.
I don't send the precious Muppet stuff unless I know you like Muppets. Are you Muppet-worthy? Tee hee.
(Did I mention I grew up on the Muppets?)
Monday, February 23, 2009
Origami & sticker bonus
A pen pal in New Zealand enclosed a bunch of goodies with her letter (on this very cute Kawaii stationery). Not only did she send sparkly cute skull stickers (I think the theme is kinda "Nightmare before Christmas," which I love), but she also put a bunch of loose stickers inside this beautifully folded red origami packet. Wow! Snail mail joy!
I feel a little weird posting this - I want to show off photos of pretty letters and such, but by no means do I expect anything from correspondents but letters! It's just fun to show the variety. (I'm not so great at enclosing goodies myself, though I do try.) The letter itself is what it's all about.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Hand-stamped, hand-made beauty
This came from a pen pal in Louisiana, who created unique stationery by using various stamps, including lined journaling stamps. The photo does not do it justice - the stamp color was some kind of gorgeous blended sparkly purple-pink. I'm waiting for her next letter to find out what she used as a stamp pad - the effect is stunning!
Wonder Woman: I married a monster
Here's one of my favorite envelope designs in the Wonder Woman fold-and-mail pad by Chronicle books. I added the sparkly silver star stickers.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Pilot Varsity refilled
Okay, so this post isn't DIRECTLY about letter-writing, but it is about fountain pens. And I write all my letters with fountain pens. And I write a lot of letters, and address even more envelopes, with this pen and this ink. So, on to the meat of the post...
Encouraged by this post on the Good Pens blog, I finally gave it a go and refilled a Pilot Varsity. Using needlenose pliers, you can just pop the nib bit out, dump out any unused ink, and fill with a much more exciting color. I wanted a nice fat line for my Noodler's Heart of Darkness, so this was a perfect fit. I address most envelopes with Heart of Darkness because it is so very black and also waterproof, so this is now my go-to pen for that purpose.
I didn't rinse the nib, and you can see in the top of the photo how much lighter the Pilot black ink is than the Noodler's black-black-black HoD.
I can't believe my luck!!
The other day I was wondering around in my favorite el cheapo super-discount store, when I hit the jackpot in the stationery aisle -- a whole slew of Chronicle Books fold and mails on sale! These puppies retail for at least $8, but they were only a dollar a piece. Of course I bought out most of their stock. I got 5 (FIVE, people!!) Wallace and Gromit, 2 Catwoman, 2 Pink Panther, plus an Opus and a Mutts. Zowie. I have plenty of fold and mails now! Also picked up some cute notepads, too - not Chronicle Books, unfortunately, and the paper is not as fountain-pen friendly as I'd like (just in the little notepads; the fold-and-mail paper is great for FPs), but hey - it's fun to match the Catwoman fold-and-mail with Catwoman notepaper.
For anyone who lives in Massachusetts or Rhode Island, I found these in an Ocean State Job Lot. The various stores often have similar stock, so maybe you'll find some in a Job Lot near you!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
More lovely hand-drawn stationery from a sendsomething pen pal. I wish I could do this! It's such a treat to receive and open a letter like this, with such unique and personal artwork.
Incidentally, I wrote her on sendsomething and she's since become a faithful pen pal! How cool is that?
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Donovan's gorgeous Paper Doll letter
Is this snazzy or what?? It is yellow printing accented with gold leaf (or something gold and metallic).
It opens up elegantly to an inside with a decorative border. (Shown here with my Baoer Skywalker fountain pen.)
...and, for the fountain penners among us, she wrote it with a dip pen!
Even the envelope is ornate and lovely!
This came from Donovan, who said she got it at Paper Doll in Chicago. Oh how I wish they sold this online! This stationery really blew me away.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I love this card, from a Flickr pen pal, and I love the hand-drawn heart border on the envelope!
I kinda dig insects.
MOST AMAZING pen card EVER
I was just plotzing when I got this pen card from my dear friend Tracy, who continues to outdo herself with amazing cards and stationery in her letters. How gorgeous is this?? The gold accents are just over the top, as is the little-bear-playing-the-tuba sticker.
The inside of the card and the inside of the envelope had little cutie stamps, including this awesome pig-in-a-tutu.
The card says it is Turnowsky by Papyrus, but I wasn't able to find any of them anywhere online.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Sleep-deprived letter from a new mommy
I just got back in touch with a somewhat distant cousin; we used to write to each other when we were kids and in college, and fell off afterwards. (Admittedly, probably my fault.) I heard she just had a new baby (thanks to my mom, who is better about keeping in touch with all the branches of the fam), and so I wrote to her, and she wrote back immediately, and thus a new correspondence is born. I can't believe she writes such thoughtful, sweet letters when she is barely catching sleep, what with the new baby and all. I loved her musings around this envelope.
I wanted to send an extra-special smile, so I wrote her back on my extra-special vintage 80s Alf stationery. (I know, if 80s stationery is now vintage, then I'm now vintage, too!)
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Emily the Strange sendsomething
This puppy went out through Sendsomething.net, to a fellow bat enthusiast. I included a bat stamp from the pollinators series, and bat stickers on the back. You may not be able to tell from the photo above, but it's sprayed with glimmer mist. It was one of the gold colors - antique brass or gold, I think.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Yet still more Jezebel glory
Delilah sings the blues. I love this one especially. Someday I will buy a box of them instead of buying them singly.
I know, I know, I crow about Jezebel a lot, but they're gorgeous, dreamy and quirky all at once.
Then for The picaresque adventures of robert and shirah, I put on a pretty sticker...
and some preciously saved vintage stamps:
I know this blog is photo-heavy but I hope it's worth it.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Pearl says: it's only a paper moon
I just finished off my last Jezebel card last week, and the very next day, my fresh order with new cards arrived! This one is called "Pearl says: it's only a paper moon."
A special correspondent deserved one of the precious "letters mingle soul" stamps, plus some groovy owls. Yay vintage stamps.
I found a rubber stamp on eBay with the same image, but inverted, so I used that on the back:
Friday, February 6, 2009
V-mail with vintage stamps
V-mails are basically WWII-era fold-and-mail postalette type things. They were created as a means to get letters from home efficiently to soldiers overseas. Someday (one of my famous somedays) I will photograph the inside, too - they are very neat. And they still make great letter-writing stationery, with that vintage flair, and take fountain pen ink well.
And I love to use vintage stamps on 'em.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Send me some gmail stickers already!
This is so cool I can hardly believe it - Gmail is giving away free stickers! Quick! Check it out on the Google blog.
I am breaking my own rules of blogging (but they're my rules, so... it's kinda fun to let myself break 'em sometimes) by posting this photo and info ahead of a whole bunch of letter photos that are still waiting to be posted, because this is just so damn cool.
You have to WRITE to gmail, via old fashioned snail mail, and send a SASE. How cool is that?? I love Gmail, it is such a smart and simple email interface, and I have long thought the red M envelope logo would make a great mailing sticker. And now it IS a sticker, complete with sparkly background! I am totally salivating over the unicorn one. I promise to post photos of them once they arrive. I am not skilled enough to include the photos of the stickers that are on the gmail blog, so really, just follow the link to take a gander, it's worth it.
Above is my note I wrote to the gmail-ers, included with the SASE. The very cute notepad is from original artwork by Annette at nutandbee.com; that design is called, charmingly, "where rainbows come from."
Otay, enough babbling - go get your gmail stickers. They say the free sticker offer ends 14 Feb 2009, so you have a little more than a week to get crackin'.
I'll leave you with the back of the envelope I sent gmail, including my awful attempted doodle of the Gmail M envelope logo.
Monday, February 2, 2009
I don't think I can even express in words what I thought when I pulled this out of my mailbox, but I will say that I couldn't even walk back to my car without stopping in the middle of the sidewalk, mouth agape in awe, to read the whole thing.
Thank you so much, Scrybe!
I thought I wasn't a huge poetry fan, but this just blew me away -- even moreso because it was so beautifully written (in fountain pen, OF COURSE!) on the back of the large envelope.
AND she sent me paper and envelopes to try out, too.
I feel overwhelmingly rich and lucky. Poems in my mailbox from caring people -- that is wealth, richness of value.
See? I'm just kind of ruining it by babbling it. Just read the poem again.
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