Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Marti's Snake Stamp

I hope Marti is OK with snakes. I liked the way this one turned out.
Nice paper makes a big difference - most of the time. IMHO, it is hard to get good brush marker results on cheap paper. I can get OK results with bold flat markers on cheap paper but the OK-ness is probably a result of all the extra layers I add to compensate for the blah-ness that happens with anything on cheap paper. The only thing I can make work - in one layer - on cheap paper is G-Tec.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Florence's Beagle Stamp

I love the beagle. Reminds me of the nice lady who lived next door, who upon learning that I would not let my son have a dog, adopted a dog, so that he could come over every day and pretend it was his.

They don't call me Mean Jean for no reason.

And they can call me copy cat, too. I was copying the way Florence writes her name on her flaps. I did not look at one before I did this one. Just did it from memory.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Pets for Lynne and Hester

This would have been perfect if I had drawn a hamster cage. Sadly, I would have to buy 20 stamps to get another hamster and that's not going to happen. If anyone wants to send me a hamster, I will do their name as a hamster cage and it will be cuter than heck.

Hester's envelope has problems, not sure I can save it. If I do, I might re-post it. It was done while I was on the trip with only a very few pens and markers.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Guest artist - PisSaro

The last thing I ever expected to post was a tattoo. It gives me the creeps to think of putting something permanent on skin.

But when I saw these, I realized that it was possible to make a pretty tattoo. Not that I would want one. But, if a person had to have a tattoo, I think this would be the way to go. I'm surprised it has taken so long for someone to figure out how to do something that is delicate.

If you love tattoos - that's fine with me. I completely understand that they are popular.

You can see more of her work here on Instagram:

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Saturday Re-Run - Stacey's Ink Spill

From Dec 20, 2010. Way back then, I posted that I liked this one so much I would be keeping it. I have not seen it around, so I suspect I ended up mailing it to her.

The lettering is upright ornamental one of my all time favorites.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Cindy's Pilot BP-S

Pilot discontinued the BP-S. There are other blogs where people are expressing grief that would seem ridiculous to express over a ball point - and yet, I must confess, the loss of these pens affects me in a way that I am embarrassed to admit. All I can say is that I have been obsessed with writing since I was able to hold a pen or pencil and this was by far and away the best ball point ever. I have a few left. If anyone has a stash, I will pay big bucks for them. I found a new Pilot ballpoint that is somewhat OK...but not the same. It is the Pilot Acroball 05

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Cathy's Mess - Blazing Inferno Mess

I need help coming up with the most intensely negative hot mess adjectives for this envelope. It started out with me trying to make my granddaughter's markers work because she was napping and I needed some contact with paper. Every trick I have ever tried was  tried on this envelope and it just kept getting worse. But by the time I had it this far...i just couldn't bring myself to throw it away. So, Cathy will be getting at least one make-up envelope. I have reservations about even putting this on the blog. I'll make it small so that -hopefully- nobody will toss their cookies when it pops up.

 I see this image all the time on Pinterest and it has been repinned nearly 15,000 times. So it beats out any of the envelopes. It first appeared on June 25, 2010. I still never found out whose lettering it is.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Kathy's Alfred and Grace

Same old same old.
There will be some newer fun stuff popping up very soon.

I was so distracted yesterday, I fell for a phishing email on my yahoo account - which is the one I use for exchanges. If anyone gets one of those "Hi, I know you will love this" emails from me - don't open it. I'm so annoyed with myself because it has been a really long time since I fell for one.

I would also appreciate it if you tell me that you got phishy or spammy email from that account. I'll feel better if I find out it didn't get into my list of addresses.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Buster Keaton Hot Mess

This is what I do when someone says they are bringing something for me to eat and I am really hungry and they are late. I try to recreate a style that was just doodling. It's ok, but the original doodle always seems to be better. This is the second time these stamps have worked out when i did not have a stamp in mind. There aren't many left.

The address will be in red and purple.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Exchangers Jean and Maite

Top one from Maite who lives in Gexto Spain. She only exchanged once. Bottom envelope from Jean R who exchanges frequently. I thought they went together color-wise and cheerful-wise.

Jean mentioned that she did not plan space for the stamp. It would have fit nicely under the i in Wilson - but maybe Jean doesn't want to be a rebel in her stamp placement. I think when you are that clear with your address, you can put your stamp anywhere.

The Spanish *stamp* is interesting. Very minimalist. Just that scanner code thing. I have forgotten if it has an official name. Does it?
I have an iPhone and have never tried to use one of those. I feel like I have an actual automobile, but I let my team of horses pull it because I can't figure out how to turn it on.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Sunday Guest Artist

A random envelope off Pinterest that leads to a blog without a clear name for the blogger. She seems to be a teacher who gave up on her blog in 2013.

These flowers remind me of several that have appeared on mail that I have posted.  I am putting the follow-up label on this and will probably do my own version one of these days.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Bonus Post - PTE on Dawn Nicole's Blog

During my noon cup of coffee break I spotted a fun envelope (not this one) on Pinterest. It led to a series of 10 envelopes on Dawn Nicole's site. As I was scrolling down, I was surprised to see this one - from Nancy Hills to me. Dawn did provide a link to my blog.

There are several ideas on her list of 10 that are - as she says - cool.

She also has a free downloadable book on flourishing. I am not a big fan of her particular flourish shapes. They are a little too much like pig-tails on the end of spaghetti for me. I prefer the luscious shape of cinnamon rolls. But, for free, and if you can't find a place to take a class with a cinnamon roll trained scribe, they are OK. I hope I don't sound snarky. I have nothing against her style. It's just not my favorite. I'm perfectly happy if other people like it - as I like variety - and some of the styles that don't appeal to me are really perfect for others. So, please don't hear my gentle comment about my own personal taste as criticism. Is there a better way to explain what I am trying to say.

Re-run Saturday - (July 20 -2010)

A random choice for a re-run. I wasted way too much time reading about the posts from July of 2010.

If you want directions for making these flowers, here is the link to the post.

Forcing a name into a square is something I enjoy doing. It is a very easy way to arrange the stamp and name and the address becomes the third element.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Quick and Perfect

A fun note from a friend who has taken calligraphy and has also had some problems with her hand - had some surgery, I think. A couple readers have been having some health problems that make it hard to do traditional calligraphy. I am starting a new label called quick and perfect. It will be for ideas that can be done quickly and no matter what shape your hand/arm/whole body is in, you can probably execute something satisfactory. It might even be better than satisfactory.

Big loopy letters, no cap, edge to edge using a bold marker.
Then, small address with a finer tip pen or marker. Figure out a place to put in a small detail from the stamp.
A perfect envelope.
I think quick and perfect sounds so much better than the expression *quick and dirty.* It is really nice to have some go-to styles and designs for those times when you are rushed or convalescing.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Bonus Post - Halloween

 The orange lettering was scheduled to appear in January with a tutorial on how to take wild wonky printing and dress it up with some outlines.

Then, beckoned to me to add some pumpkin details because it knew that I was trying to focus on the list of must-get-done.

Haha. Envelopes are my meth.

I need to add a white dot inside the mouth on the letter I. And since I do not have any of those stamps, I just made a copy and put on a fake address so this one will go inside something else.

Tired Artist - Square Lavender to Limner

After completing a big job, I frequently try to do something fun for my own pen pals. Envelopes started when I am tired are usually disasters. Even though I have learned this time and again, I still give it a whirl. Ya never know. One of these days I might stumble across something wonderful.

This one was so bad, I couldn't figure out how to put in an address and I didn't want to even start a search for stamps, so I just addressed the other side (below). But the idea was fine. Before I made the mess in the center, the border was very pretty. It is just WIDE Copic with white gel pen over the top. There is an explanation written around the black square in tiny 005 Pigma Micron.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Edward Gorey House Mail Art Contest

Finnbadger alerted me to this mail art contest. He knows I am a huge fan of Edward Gorey. Luckily, I had a few minutes before I had to be at the airport, so I whipped this out.

You still have time to enter.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Exchanger Rachael - Crow and Penguins

The top one was Rachel's first exchange envelope. The white ink ties the design into the stamp. On the bottom one, the swirly shaped letters repeat some of the swoopy lines in both stamps. The bottom one looks like colored pencil.

As always, I love kraft paper envelopes.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Exchanger Karen's butterflies

Karen sent a lot of mail a while back and then disappeared. It is great to have you back. This is one where the scan may not do it justice. There is some subtle bleeding that is very cool. I'm not sure what tool she used. The lettering reminds me of some of the letters I do with the BIG Copic markers. It's so much fun to make the letters with one set stroke.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Bonus post - Graceful Envelope 2017

The Graceful Envelope contest has posted the theme for 2017. Pushing the Envelope. That is a recycled theme from the very early days when the contest was sponsored by the Smithsonian Postal Museum. I entered more than one envelope that year - one made of sandpaper and one covered with aluminum foil. Those italics are horrible. I really liked the foil one and might use that idea again. Both were done in haste.

The deadline to mail isn't until the end of March, so you have plenty of time to brainstorm.

Guest Artist - from Lisbon

Pinterest tossed this one at me. I love how they keep track of the things I like and connect me with things I am thrilled to find. This is an app. They show a ton of material off the app. I generally do not collect apps, but might have to dive in and have this one be my first.

This is not an envelope, but the design is very similar to many other clothesline and banner ideas I have tossed out.

there is not just one artist, you have to go to the link to see the entire team.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Re-run Ruth - cross drill pattern

In the middle of August, I came up with an idea to have re-run Saturday to go with guest artist Sunday. We'll see if this is a good organizational plan for me.

Of course it would take a while to go back and re-label all the re-runs. not sure I am going to do that....

I loved this one + the lovely way the PO figured out where the address was.

And I am tagging it with the follow-up because I seriously need to steal this idea.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Stash management - Brenda w/ 2 floral stamps

Reminder to break the name if it doesn't fit. This was done with the Copic WIDE marker - a really wonderful marker. I shall treat myself to more when I actually get all the stash management dealt with. This was a functional envelope, so I did not spend a ton of time on it.

It would have been better if the black lettering matched the dark green on the stamp. Another improvement would have been to add flowery details somewhere.

10 minutes later -
I just couldn't leave it alone, and took exactly 1 minute to add the flowers.
I'm pretty sure I added some white gel pen details but did not take another photo. It's safe to say that tiny white details will *never* ruin anything. I'm sure you can picture highlights, eh?

if you are not on this list, email me ASAP- the lists will go out shortly

Chuck, Troy, CathyO, Susan, Faye, KarenN, Thomas, Lynne, CarolC, Alison, Shana, Maggie, Anne, Hester, Rachael, Phillip, Jannie, NancyD, NancyL, Eric, Florence, Kate

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Miss Cathy's Dotty Stamp Border

I needed a quick envelope and had only two of these stamps left. I realized that it would make sense to introduce another color. Without the dots, it was pretty blah. The dots were a good way to tie the colors together. These are the Faber Castell PITT big brush markers. I wonder why they call them PITT. Does anyone know?

When I publish my book, Miss Cathy will have her name assigned to this chapter. Will I owe you a royalty? Or just a free copy of the book?

Today is last day to sign up for the October Exchange. See the October 1 post for details.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Aug Exch - E's Shower

Way back in 2011 when my daughter got married, I created the most amazing set of mailings to the guests. I have no doubt that it has never been duplicated. Quite a bold (arrogant) statement. But I can't imagine anyone has done as many extraneous mailings for a wedding.

This lonely K has been in the orphan pile since 2011. I was happy to send it along to Kate. The fun part was finding perfect stamps. It's hard to part with some of these stamps.....
Clearly, I did not do a spectacular job on the lettering - but you seldom get spectacularity on all levels from me.
You are lucky to get one.
Extra lucky to get two.
If I get to three, I end up keeping the envelope - so none of you should be expecting any threes in your mailboxes.
Hard to believe I could be so selfish. How many other skeletons do you think there are in my closet? I have to find a picture of one of them. I believe there is a label that refers to the ones I do not send - but I can never remember what it is.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Stack management (to Smash & Cindy Aug exch)

Two more that were pulled out of the stack of half-done-needs-a-stamp-and-a-name.

On at least half of these I was very happy with the stamp and then botched the lettering.

WHY do i put the stamp on before I letter the address.


7 pets left in the book of pet stamps....

Monday, October 3, 2016

Nancy's Flintstone

No matter how many Flintstone envelopes I declare are the last one, I keep finding more.

Nancy included a very nice e.e.cummings poem - which makes me miss my no-cap days.

I wonder how she made the balloon. I have seen where you dip balloons in paint and bop them on the paper to make a circle. one of those things- I-wanna-do....

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Heart in clear envelope - guest artist

This is cute - but what you find inside the heart shaped letter is uber cute.

Another blogger who has abandoned their blog. A quick look at the last post revealed that they were seriously into the crafting/making - then wrote a book - and that seemed to leave them with no energy left for the blog. I keep pondering writing a book - but, I don't want a book project to eat my blog...

This shows just one letter of the innards. If you go to the blog you may see all 4 letters.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

October Exchange - Sign-up

Below this post is a silly one that I scheduled a while back. Then, on Sept 24th, I realized that I had not scheduled the October Exchange. So here it is:

If you are a first timer, click on the page tab at the top of the blog that says:
envelope EXCHANGE *rules*
Read all the details:

Essential info:
Send me the following information - please type it in 5 lines.
You'd be surprised how hard it is for people to follow the format.
I like those 5 lines so that we have uniformity when I make the lists.

Your Name
Your Street Address
Your City-State-Zip
Your country
Your email

Send that info to me by October 6th.
Send it to:
jmwilson411 [at] yahoo [dot] com
I will respond to your email. If you do not get a response from me in a day or two, resend your info.

On Oct 7th or 8th you will receive a list of 5 to 7 people.
Your name will be on the list.
You will send to the other 4 or 5 or 6 people on the list.
There may be one person on your list who is outside the USA, requiring $1.15 to mail the envelope.

Beginners are welcome. No theme, any medium, digital designs are fine - just be sure to make the envelope interesting.

Enclosures are optional.
Please put your return address on the back and indicate *empty* if there is no enclosure or *open* if there is an enclosure.
Any questions, just email me.

One of Jeri's envelopes. It was on the blog back in 2010. I am guessing she used a nib that has 5 points that is used for drawing the lines for music.

Robot Killer - off topic

OK- in over 5 years I have kept all the images on the blog completely benign. Nothing even slightly weird - except maybe the peacocks and all they did was play poker. But when I ran across this image, I couldn't help myself because Smash-girl and I had a delightful robot series way back when and the BHB (big helpful brother) is a big fan of robots....and he helps me repair stuff....and sometimes I worry that he is going to get fed up with me.

So forgive me - I'll return to sweetness and light tomorrow...or dun-dun-dun [that's ominous music] maybe, because it is almost October, maybe there will be a whole month of really gruesome stuff. Why is October the month of witches and gruesomeness? Is it the coming of fall and all the decay, etc? Shall we explore our inner druid?

More silly images here:

Laughing Squid is one of those places where you can just wander forever. Don't even go there if you have other things to get done.

Here is a fun envelope

Friday, September 30, 2016

Exchanger Thomas

Once again it would be fun to know more about this one - like the materials and the tools.

There is a layer of something raised and shiny on the flower that may not show up in the scan.

Very pretty.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Exchanger Lynne

Maybe Lynne will tell us what she used to make these little flowers. Something that dabs - like a paintbrush. But there are so many kinds of paint brushes. They are nice because the paint is not mixed to one color so there is variation in the purple. The leaves are pretty much the same size and shape of the flowers which is a nice touch and I like how there are some single purple dabs that are similar to the leaves - maybe they are buds.
Steal worthy.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

For Wilma

Another greeting from a local friend.
I believe the envelope is preprinted. although anyone could come up with something like this if they had lots of time and patience.
This might be the end of the Wilma envelopes - although I may find some more. Remember, this is a linear project. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel - but there is no way of knowing how long the tunnel is.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Exchangers Miss Cathy and Amy

I love the penmanship envelope from Miss Cathy and paired it with Amy's because the colors go together nicely.

Amy sent her get well message right at the beginning of my mom's illness before we knew what was wrong. My mom used to lure Amy over to play scrabble. I think they were pretty evenly matched although sometimes there was a trouncing. But I'm pretty sure the trouncing could go either way.

These are both steal worthy ideas.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Exchangers Smash and ChuckM

Two more in the Flintstone series. The colors go well together. Also, I noticed how they both did variation on the t in the t-s-t part of Flintstone.

I wonder who is living in her old apartment. Maybe we should do a mass mailing to that person. I could go over and get their name off the directory. Many years ago I thought about getting names of people who lived in senior living who had no relatives and just sending them random mail for the fun of it.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Exchanger Rachael

Another fun idea - steal worthy -
and the insert and envelope lining are very nice additions. Rachael is one of the newer exchangers. It looks to me like she has taken some lessons. I wonder if she goes to IAMPETH or the International Conference. I hope I have time to attend one of these years. It might be a good opportunity to meet some of you in person.

Extra post today. Scroll down. 2017 stamp designs have been announced.

2017 USPS Stamp designs announced

I'm pretty proud of myself that my intuition is working - and I thought it might be time to Google to see if the 2017 designs had been posted. It says they were announced 4 days ago. Here you go - just a few that look wonderful to me:

WPA Posters

Love Skywriting (Love series)Delicioso