Saturday, June 30, 2012

The shark-infested mailbox continues

Shark Mail: a collage from Laura

EGADS, I spoke too soon! Or rather, I posted too soon. Earlier today, I posted about the shark mail saga. Check it out. It's fun. Then, in today's mail, I got more shark mail! This fine collage came from Laura of PleaseDeliverTo -- the one who started the whole lovely shark mail affair. She said it's her first handmade postcard -- what fine work, Laura!

Shark Mail from Laura

"A wine cork, some duct tape, and a ruler" --?? That sounds like quite a shark-capture story! Seriously, though, how perfect is that wonderful Titanic stamp for the shark mail theme?

Now, an unrelated tip. For my newer blog readers (how many months or years has it been since I shared this tip?), did you know you can click on the photos to see a larger version of them? They're all in Flickr and you can embiggen them there.

Shark Mail!


A while back I had a little conversation on Twitter about shark mail. It turns out that Laura of PleaseDeliverTo had blog visitors from the search term "shark letters," and so did I. We both thought this was very odd. PostMuse of the Orphaned Postcard Project also rang in.

If you are thinking what we were thinking, this seemed a perfect opportunity for a little whimsical mail art. So, I sent Laura some shark mail. Front of postcard with teeth (dripping blood - hey, folks, for freehand drawing, this is pretty darn good for me) shown above. Since my artwork may not be the clearest, I had to designate it shark mail on the side.

Shark Mail to Laura, back

On the back, my theme was "let's give 'em something for their search!" So here is some real shark mail. (See the sparkly sticker? That's an orca, or a killer whale. It's not a shark, but it's the closest sort of sticker I had. This is the first time in my life I was wishing for some shark stickers.)

I was counting on my own blog post for this occasion, and possibly more - and indeed, Laura noted the postcard in one of her blog posts. (And indeed, I've received word that more sharks may be on the way. Sharks ahoy!)

Shark Mail from PostMuse

But it doesn't end there! PostMuse sent me a Shark Mail postcard, too - and wow, can she draw a creepy/comical shark well, or what? Look out, mail carriers - shark infested mailboxes!

On the back of her card, she reminisced about the old Saturday Night Live skit with a shark knocking on doors. I remember that one. Ha.

Anyhoo, this exchange embodies the fun and whimsical spirit of my favorite sort of mail art. And whoever was googling shark letters can now find fruit for their labors.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Best mail pin-up ever!

Best Pinup EVER!

I was just looking at some postcards on Postcrossing, and I came across this one - RU-863545 - which I think must be the BEST PINUP EVER. Sexy lady, mailbox, a skirt full of mail? Whew! My temperature's rising...

You can see by the signature on the envelope in the bottom right corner that this is the work of the famous and classic pin-up artist Gil Elvgren. Here's what I want to know: why is there no reprint postcard book of great pin-ups like this? I've searched and searched, and I can't find one. Anyone? Suggestions?

It puts me in the mood for some fine pin-up postcards, and I'm thinking about hosting a Pin-up postcard swap on Swap-bot... stay tuned for developing news!

And for full disclosure: I did not send or receive this postcard, alas, I just saw the postcard image on Postcrossing. I WISH I'd received it, or knew where to find one!

(In case you are a Pinterest fan, I also pinned it on Pinterest.)

EDIT/UPDATE: Thanks to a tip from Julie (O-kami), I've just discovered this very postcard is available on While I'm not a huge fan of the coated paper stock that Zazzle uses for their postcards, I think I am going to have to pick up a few of these! Thanks so much for the tip, Julie!

"To Get a Letter, Write a Letter:" new round sticker design


When I listed my "To get a letter, write a letter" square envelope seals in my etsy shop, a number of my blog readers and pen pals commented that they would like the sticker better in a round design.

You know what? I do, too.


Now you can get this design in either the original square with rounded corners, or the new round / circular design.


Sealing an envelope with this sticker is an excellent reminder that the best way to get mail is to send mail!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Show and Mail: Fiep Westendorp writing desk from Postcrossing


I got a Postcrossing treat today: NL-1274604 showing artwork by the wonderful Dutch artist Fiep Westendorp. This postcard had been in my favorites, and the sender kindly sent it to me! Of course I love the fantastic writing desk imagery. Look at that great pile of mail on top of her desk!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Vintage stationery for sale

I've got a bunch of vintage stationery items for sale in my shop right now, and I just thought I'd share a few of my favorites with you here in a clickable treasury, above. Any of the photos will lead you right to the listings.

The three I'm most excited about:

Teen Tattle vintage 1950s stationery (sold)

Vintage 1980s Cabbage Patch Kids cards

1940s Vintage Basildon Air Mail paper

All three of those are original, one-of-a-kind items, so if you like it, grab it, because I don't have multiples of those!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mail Me Some Art: another mail resource

Here's another quick tip on how to see some more mail in your mailbox: check out Mail Me Some Art, a paper-based (postcards, ATCs, tags, etc) swap site.

Caveat: I've not tried it myself, I just saw a link to it on Twitter (thanks, @Taylormaidemom), but it sounds like a really cool idea that is guaranteed to have "no flakers" since you have to send something to receive something. All swap items are sent to the coordinator, who then distributes them.

From the Mail Me Some Art FAQs:
"All styles of art and all levels of experience are welcome. In order to guarantee everyone who makes something receives something in return, all swap items are sent to me and I mail them back out to others in the swap."
There's no formal registration process, you just send items to the coordinator by the deadline. Has anyone tried this site or have experience with their swaps?

Oh, and by the way - enjoy the longest days of the year! Happy Summer Solstice (tomorrow), everyone!

Monday, June 18, 2012

How do you find pen pals? A nice blog post

Through a comment she made on my blog, I just discovered the Musings of a postcrosser and letter writer blog. I've just added it to my Letter Blogs list. A recent post may be of interest to some of my readers, and I encourage you to check it out:

How do you find pen pals?"

She's got some good resources and tips listed, and chronicles her own process.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Links: a little bit of tidying up

Good gravy, my link lists were a MESS! So sorry they'd gotten so behind.

I've cleaned them up. Please do give a shout if anything is out of date or you think it's in the wrong place. (I may disagree on the latter count, but hey, I do like to know.)

For those of you that remember my musings on a re-design... it's on the summer to-do list. But for now, at least the links are better organized, most particularly those blogs and sites that are never updated getting moved to the Defunct section.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Gorgeous new Miles Davis & Edith Piaf stamps

New Miles Davis/Edith Piaf stamp sheet

I don't even know why I'm quite so excited about the latest new U.S. stamp release, the Miles Davis & Edith Piaf stamps. I love jazz, and although Miles Davis is not my favorite, he's certainly one of the greats. I've never been a big Edith Piaf fan. But there's something about the design of these stamps, and the theme of putting the two of them together, that has me utterly smitten.

New Miles Davis/Edith Piaf stamp sheets

Perhaps I just love it when a stamp release is done jointly with two countries: this one is also released in, of course, France, via their postal service, "La Poste." I am charmed by the idea of international collaboration on stamps.

Also, these stamps are just gorgeous! I love the design, with the highlighted image on black.

New Miles Davis/Edith Piaf stamp sheet, back

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Lots more vintage stationery coming...

Vintage Current Meadow Medley Notecards 1

One of this summer's big themes for me will be listing a lot of vintage stationery for sale in The Missive Maven etsy shop. I've been collecting stationery all year (of course!) but it takes a long time to photograph and list it properly. If you're into vintage stationery, stay tuned to this blog, my twitter feed, and of course the aforementioned etsy shop, because I'll be listing multiple items each week.

One of my most recent listings is for this lovely complete set of Vintage Current Meadow Medly notecards. I've got an awful lot of Current stationery items to list, so if you like vintage Current, you're in luck!

Vintage Day and Love notes stationery 1

I'll also be listing some lovely older vintage items from the 1940s and 1950s. Literally as I was writing this blog post about a lovely 1940s stationery set I just listed about an hour ago, it sold. So I won't tempt you with more photos. But if you're into some of the older stuff, again, keep an eye out! I guess I'm pricing things well because they're selling really quickly.

I'm off to the post office soon to mail some etsy orders AND pick up the new Miles Davis and Edith Piaf stamps just released today - yippee! I'm as excited about these new stamps as for any released in 2012.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Vintage Current Berry and Jam Notes

Vintage Current Berry and Jam Notes

I just listed some lovely vintage/new summer stationery in my etsy shop: Vintage Current Berry and Jam Notes. It's a complete pack of 12 vintage Current notecards and envelopes in their original packaging, from the 1970s or 1980s, featuring summer berries on the front and a recipe on the back for how to make jam from that fruit. The pack includes 3 each of 4 designs: strawberry, blueberry, currant, and blackberry.

Vintage Current Berry and Jam Notes, recipes

Do you get hungry looking at these ripe summer berries? I do! They put me in mind for summer letter-writing. I'm not a cook myself, but it seems like a double gift to send a letter and a recipe all in one with these cards.

Edit: oooops. That was fast! They're sold out already.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pony Express postcard by Rifle Paper Co.

Pony Express Postcard

I just received this adorable postcard today, from Carla of 365 letters blog. Squee! Love the cute pony express postman riding through a forest. Probably not terribly historically accurate to what the pony express was really like, but hey, it's so CUTE! The postcard is made by the Rifle Paper Co. but I've just been all over their website and can't spot it anywhere on the site. Can you?

Edit: Thanks to blog reader and letter blogger Anne of Letter Love for spotting these postcards on the Paper Source website.

Good mail day - thanks, Carla!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mailbox postcard swap on Swap-bot

Post postcard

Yay! There's another Mailbox postcard swap up on Swap-bot. I just adore postcards featuring mailboxes (um, not postcards that have a little tiny mailbox that maybe if you were told it was there and you squint, you might sort of see it, which is what I received in the last mailbox postcard swap - but that's another story) and was happy to sign up for this swap the second that I saw it. Granted, it helps that I have more time for swapping this month, but anyhoo - if you like mailbox postcards, too, do check out Mailbox postcard swap and join the fun.

The postcard pictured here features a mailbox photo by Catwrangler. For more about that fine postcard, check out my original blog post about it from Feb 2010.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Feline Postal Brigadier with a tiny letter

incoming Apr 12 16 detail b

Behold Sebastian, essential member of the Feline Postal Brigade, with a teensy tiny letter. Photo by intrepid postal goddess, Donovan.

Are you on Flickr? You, too, can add photos of postal kitties to the Feline Postal Brigade group - please do! The world needs more postal kitties.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Par avion, or par avian? Letterbird seals

Letterbird round seal

I've just listed a brand-new item in my etsy shop:

Letterbird sticker seals.

Via airmail, via letterbird - par avian, anyone? This vintage-style swallow brings a new twist to airmail as it carries an envelope in its beak - and the envelope in its beak is sealed with red sealing wax and a sprig of flowers.

Letterbird envelope seals

The swallow is swishing through a blue sky with clouds, as I sometimes fancifully imagine my letters flying on their journeys... the bird presenting the envelope in its beak captures the excitement of the letter it seals.

Letterbird seal on brown paper envelope

The letterbirds are sold in packs of eight (8) self-adhesive glossy round circle sticker seals. They are 1.5" square, full color printing of a vintage-style bird with an envelope in its beak. You can use them to seal envelopes, spice up mail, or decorate letters - an excellent mail art tool!

Letterbird seals, set of 8

If you like mail-related envelope seals, you can check out all 3 designs I currently offer.

Letterbird seal on red envelope

Happy mailing, and write on!

Summer is here!

I have to apologize once again for my absence. May was busier than expected (why does that always happen?!?), but summer is here and I have a lot more freedom. Stay tuned for a lot more blog posts in June than you saw from me in April or May... and as always, I often send little tidbits, links, and mail photos over Twitter, so do come say hi to me there if you are into that sort of thing.

Happy June!!!