outgoing mail: all’s well that ends shell

shellmail (5 of 6)shellmail (1 of 6)shellmail (2 of 6)

What an exhilarating return to the world of envelope art! I’m so delighted by these beachcombing-inspired designs, created from a combination of craft paper picked up in a Labor Day sale, my secret cache of mermaid-themed washi tape, and some sea life stickers with a lot of character.

It’s been a while since I decorated a pre-made envelope base rather than making my own, but I enjoyed discovering creative ways to make these envelopes my own! (In case you’re wondering, I’ll add on the address in the blank triangular space when each is ready to send.) What crafting experiments have you tried lately?

Continue reading

outgoing mail: desert dreaming

cactus mail (1 of 6)cactus mail (5 of 6)

It’s been a while since I created envelopes from a good ol’ pad of craft paper, right?

Apparently such pads are decreasing in popularity, as I purchased this summery set at about 25% of its original price. It’s certainly nothing compared to the thrift of magazine envelopes, but I suppose I can splurge $5 if the end result is this charmingly tropical!

Continue reading

what’s in my mailbox? “I hide myself within my flower”

snail mail july (7 of 9)snail mail july (3 of 9)snail mail july (9 of 9)

As my life has quickly become a wonderfully ceaseless cycle of Emily Dickinson research,  I anticipate that all posts for the foreseeable future may include references to her verse or letters. In any case, I’m happy to hide myself within these flowers (and trees, and sea creatures)–all kindly sent to me in recent pen pal letters!

In praise of her beloved conservatory, Dickinson wrote “My flowers are near and foreign, and I have but to cross the floor to stand in the Spice Isles.” The letters I receive from my pen pals fulfill the same lovely function: I have but to cross the road to my mailbox to stand in Canada, Spain, the Netherlands, and Nevada, in this case!

Continue reading

extreme enveloping: woodland wrapping paper

outgoing mail (6 of 7)outgoing mail (5 of 7)outgoing mail (1 of 7)

Hey, remember back in the days of yore when I wanted to make “creating envelopes out of unusual materials” a thing?

In November, I showed you, gleefully, the envelopes I’d crafted from a recycled roll of wallpaper, hoping to kick off a glorious new age of extensively eccentric envelope fabrication–and then I proceeded to spend the next eight months making envelopes out of nothing but magazine pages.

There’s no time like the present, though, and I’m happy to say that in my continued quest to catch up on all the pen pal letters I owe (if you’re still waiting on me, you should have yours soon!), I decided to turn my manufacturer’s eye to a new substance: wrapping paper. (Specifically, ridiculously cutesy forest creature wrapping paper probably designed for literal babies but I don’t particularly care.)

Continue reading

what’s in my mailbox? go and catch a falling star

mail (1 of 6)mail (2 of 6)

Never has a mail haul so inspired me to quote John Donne! I know I tend to describe basically everything stamped that’s sent my way as “magical,” but these letters are enchanting in the most unique of ways. Mythical creatures of all kinds have traveled to me from Argentina, Iceland, Norway, and the U.K. over the past few weeks!

Continue reading

outgoing mail: species speaking

envelopes (3 of 6)envelopes (1 of 6)

I’m working at catching up on my post-wisdom-teeth-drama letter backlog, I promise! The first step is creating envelopes, which is always my favorite way to occupy idle hours: especially with a fresh stack of old calendars and magazines featuring Hawai’i’s native species from my parents back home.

I don’t know what silly mood inspired me to bestow speech bubbles upon these creatures that share my island birthplace–they include two nēnē (Hawaiian geese) and a wide-eyed humpback whale–but I’m rather fond of the goofy finished product!

Continue reading

outgoing mail: billions & billions of stars

sky mail (7 of 7)sky mail (4 of 7)

Space may be the place, but the sold-individually decorative paper section at a certain major craft store (that will remain anonymous as I still refuse to provide free marketing for chain retailers on my little-read, niche blog) is currently also “the place.” I don’t know when their paper design department upgraded from stripes and polka dots to sky-maps and painted galaxies, but I am not complaining. And neither, I hope, will my pen pals when they receive these envelopes!

(If you want to know how to sing the title of this blog post, check out my #1 jam as a highschooler: one of Symphony of Science’s quality musical remixes of quotes from various “great minds of science.” I think Bill Nye was responsible for this title-worthy phrase!)

Continue reading