letter writing and mail art

I’ve gotten into mail art and have shared the idea with friends who are now practicing it and sending it to others. Letters lift spirits, as they say. And, it’s even better when it’s got some art on it. 🙂

Since it’s National Letter Writing Month (April – almost the end…) and I’m finishing up a set of Elevated Envelopes for a mail art exchange I figure I’ll do a post about it. Besides the letters/mail art I’m sending for the Elevated Envelope exchange, I’ve sent letters/mail art to my daughter in Montana, to a friend and have a few more to make/write before the month ends.

Can’t think of what to write? Find some good letter writing topics here on the 365 Letters blog.

If you like stamps like I do, the US Postal Service has a quarterly publication called Beyond the Perf that you might be interested in. It’s free and I’m looking forward to getting my first issue soon.

If you are curious about how I made the envelopes, here’s a summary – I used Canson’s mixed media paper from a sketch book and sprayed on homemade alcohol inks (made with Ranger alcohol inks mixed in a small spray bottle with 91% rubbing alcohol). When I sprayed the inks on the paper, I used a variety of stencils to mask (and then immediately turned the stencil over and pressed the wet ink on the stencil back on to the paper so as not to waste it). I made my own envelope template by taking apart an envelope and then tracing it on manila folder and cutting it out. After I cut out the envelopes and folded them, I used a dip pen and india ink and drew/doodled on some scribbly flowers, then took a white water-based Sharpie paint pen and added highlights to the flowers once they were dry. I had a stamp that said ‘Priorite’ (“priority” or “important” in French I assume). I love the rolls of kraft paper they have at Home Depot (use them for a base cover on my table when I paint) and took a piece of that and used my vintage typewriter to type the names of the recipients of my mail art. I then tore the addresses out/off and glue-sticked them on the envelope. Then I stuffed them with a mini envelope with vintage/foreign stamps, some watercolor sprayed vintage dictionary paper I made, my business card, a little note about myself, and a few blank address labels I designed and printed. (I don’t know if it’s customary/mandatory to do so, but I always include a few little items to exchange in my mail art.)

So, now I just wait for next week to come (the deadline for this exchange) and I’ll be sharing pictures of the mail art that I receive back! I’m excited!

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