Saturday, January 19, 2019

Happy New Year from Carroll and Trish (Bonus Post)

Both Carroll and Trish chose Happy New Year themes for exchange envelopes.

Carol's on top has some lovely hand carved rubber stamps.
I enjoyed the card, too. Thank you to the PO for not putting an ugly cancel on the envelope.

Trish mailed hers, had it returned - crossed out all the info on the back and reset it and it arrived.

Scroll down to the regular post for today.

The card that was inside Carroll's envelope
Back of card form Carroll.

August Exchange - from Anthea

Blue and Yellow is one of my favorite color combinations. It might be some weird Swedish DNA thing.

Anthea usually fills up all of her space and does some fun hand lettering on a panel that is applied to the envelope. Whenever I see collage, I think, "You should do more collage." And then I forget.

What's wrong with blogger that they do not recognize the word collage - and want to make it into college?

Friday, January 18, 2019

Aug 2018 PTEX to Jessica - birthday candles

This one is fairly simple. Any name with a J and a C is going to be challenging. Jessica has been a pretty regular exchanger - so I need to do a better job of finding fonts where I am happy with the J and C.

Or, I could do a search for *Jessica* on the blog and see what I have already done. Maybe I've done a bunch that I actually like...but have forgotten about.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

July Exchange from Christine - watercolor - two sided

Christine came up with a very clever way to send a watercolor without the stamp being part of the design. It was done on a sheet of fairly heavy watercolor paper, then folded into an envelope and the flip side had the stamp as well as the address and return address - which is covered up by the origami heart.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Aug 2018 PTEX to Fatima - quote on the left

A third one in the series where I like the style of lettering but am not pleased with the random bold words because they are not meaningful words. This one has more of the blue colored pencil which seems to distract a bit from the fact that less important words are emboldened.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Bonus post - NovPTEX - Shimmery-mess

While the new 2019 method for organizing the mail and posting is going very well, I am still finding some random items.

These 4 are not worthy of their own posts. They are here because I'll never know if the original post for today (below) has a repeat.

Obviously these are Sharpie on shimmer and using up vintage as well as orphan Forever stamps. They are gone and that is all that matters.

Some of them might have appeared in a group shot where I took a preliminary photo. I'm always wishing I could show the steps involved but I'm not going to do it with still photos Once I have the hoard cleared out, I will go back to videos. Yup. I have my own YouTube channel and if all goes as planned, I'll be the next internet sensation. Not.

Second daily post right below.

July Exchange from Kate R and Sherri (Possible repeats)

These might be repeats.
Kate above
Sherri below

Monday, January 14, 2019

Aug 2018 PTEX to HeidiH - border doodads

This is another envelope that was in an ancient stack. The designs were lightly penciled and I am pretty sure they were from a book that I gave away and really regretted giving it away. But, I'm getting over it. I don't know why I am so drawn to copying really old designs. Sometimes I think my creativity is drying up. It doesn't even bother me. It's like my brain is tired and mindless tasks are more satisfying. Or maybe this is a cycle - and things will change. Either way - I'm not going to obsess over it.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

July Exchange from Nanski

Nanski's July envelope featured red-white-blue --- stars and the Queen of Hearts -- a fun combination.

This design could easily become a Valentine theme. Hearts instead of stars.

Somewhere in the archive is a valentine I made in green and black. I loved it - and especially loved the non-traditional colors.

Yesterday, I found the font that had inspired the envelope. I found it about 7:30 am CST. I checked the stats - and by that time, there had been 100 views of the page.

So - for anyone who checks the blog early - and missed the update yesterday - scroll down.

Also - If I am getting around 300-400 views per day
that is roughly 130,000 views per year
1-million divided by 130,000 is 7.69 years
which is how long it took me to get to a million.
Random useless information.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Aug 2018 PTEX to Janet - whole font

This envelope had been in my stack for a long long time. I'm sure it would not take long to find the font on Pinterest and I hope I can add a link.

I'm 99% sure that Janet used the font on a return envelope. She's been doing a good job of spinning ideas back and forth with me. I'd steal a ton more stuff from her, but she spends a lot of time on each envelope - more than I am currently allowing myself. But - that might change. Certain things on the to-do list are officially done.

Saturday morning - surf time.
I found it

Friday, January 11, 2019

Bonus Post - Re-run - Note to exchangers

Reminder to everyone: don't fall down
unless you are making snow angels.
A re-run from 2015. Hard to believe those stamps have been around for 3 years. I'm wondering how old Stella is - and what she is up to these days. I met her 5 years ago. I need to catch up with Janet, too.

I'm back from my trip that started on Dec 23rd. After I get settled, I will start my January envelopes. It's always fun to get home and find the stack of mail from the current exchange. Tons of gorgeous mail that you will be seeing in November.

As usual, half the people prefer to send empty envelopes and half like to do cards or letters. I enjoy reading notes and letters - and apologize that I never have time to write.

When I send the lists I ask exchangers to hit reply to let me know they received their list. I usually have one person per list who does not respond. What's with that? At least I am getting a good response to my request for the format in which you send the info. I do appreciate it when you give me the info in an easy to copy block.

Shout out to the BigHelpfulBrother who did all the actual work on the list making and list sending for January. It went smoothly with only a couple blips. I keep telling him that if he would just do it every month, it would be easier - but he's not buying it.

July Exchange from Lauren - Colors

A colorful envelope and card from Lauren. It looks like a rubber stamp. The colors look like watercolor.

Below is the card which had a humorous note on the inside lamenting the humidity - which was making a mess of the note written in white ink on black paper.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Aug2018 PTEX to Nanski - quote on the left

This one is 50-50. Used up a stamp.
Have what to me is a good mix of bold and delicate. Decent message.

Not overly inspired - but it doesn't make me queasy to post it.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

July Exchange from Smash - Alzheimers stamp

The colors are so nice on this envelope. I think it's a Paper Source envelope - not sure the name of the color - but it's one of my favorites. It can work with muted colors as well as brights - and I'm not sure how it can do both - but it does.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Aug PTEX to CaroleV

While I love this style of writing and I love the mix of bold and fine lines - it bothers me that there is no sense to the bold words. I have at least three just like this -and have no idea what order they were done in. The others will pop up and we might draw some conclusions.

Coloring in the counters with colored pencil is a good way to tie in the stamp. August of 2018 was a time when I was super committed to the hoard reduction.

Monday, January 7, 2019

July Exchange from Suzanne - flowers

More flowers in January. These are stealworthy. Fun geometric shapes filled in with gel pens. Even the lettering is carefully drawn and filled in. It might be a combination of both pens and markers.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Aug PTEX to JeanR - quote on the left

Compared to the one two days ago, this one is better because there is less mixing of font styles. Remember how it is often said to use contrast. If the quote is the main focal point, then don't confuse it by having bold and wimpy lettering.

The purple and gold stamps were very friendly. I think they would make fine birthday stamps.

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Somewhat Off Topic. Ferdinandus' J

It's September. The noon coffee is being consumed. My final surf session looking for doodles for my very last class led me to this. The J caught my eye. Scanning what Ferdinandus had to say was interesting, especially his final comment:

And besides, calligraphy is for me a method of introspection and relaxation and it does not fit into my schemes to get nervous when I dedicate myself to it.

Me, too.

It's comforting to know that the world is full of people sitting around relaxing.
In a perfect world, I would do my version of this J for one of the J people in the exchange.

June Exchange from Heidi, Janna, Jesse, and Jonno

Exchange envelopes fron Heidi (top) and Janna (below) make a nice pairing.

Below Janna's are the two envelopes done by her twins, Jesse and Jonno. I was hoping we'd get more kids participating - but so far that has not happened.

I love kid art.
I love flowers, too.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Aug to Carroll - quote on the left

The idea of putting a quote on the left always seems like a good idea. The result is 50-50 or less.

The new 2019 system is to alternate every day between incoming and outgoing, so we'll see how this goes.

I was looking for ideas on Pinterest at the time I did this - it would be interesting to post these in the order of most blah to least blah - but that would require the techno-world to be on my side and today it is fighting me. Vigorously. Maybe it is trying to warn me of impending doom. I do know the printer is officially deceased.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Anthea to Rainbow.

An enjoyable little video sent to us from the BigHelpfulBrother.

I was going to feature an envelope with a big K - but today (Oct 25, 2018) I am on a mission to finish up all the Rainbow mail. This might be the last one. I know for certain that every single day has a post scheduled and I have more than 30 scheduled in 2019.

I am cautiously optimistic that my organizational system for 2019 is working.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Nov to Maggie - Dragon stamp

This one is a bit wimpy. The font is fun - but I need to practice it a lot more.

The dragon stamps are wonderful. I'm not crazy about a lot of the stamps that are to be released in 2019. If I'm smart, I will buy a few of my favorites because the hoard of non-Forever stamps is dwindling.

There might be a celebration when they are truly *all gone.*

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Jan Exchange Sign Up

Other envelopes, using up the beautiful ship
stamps, but not very clever ideas.
Today through Jan 4th is the sign up for the Jan exchange.
Please send your info to jmwilson411 -at- yahoo-dot-com.
Please put info in a stack of name/address/email with no extra line spaces.

Jane Doe (CARDS)
123 Main Street
Ames, Iowa 50312 USA

Feel free to add the word (CARDS) after your name if you like to exchange cards as well. It is entirely optional. At least half the participants just exchange empty envelopes. Inserts are optional.

If you have a birthday in January, let me know and I will note that on the list. Observing birthdays is optional.

Beginners are welcome. While there are quite a few calligraphers, you are welcome to participate if you are a rubber stamper, digital artist, collage-artist, or simply make your own envelopes.

You get a list with 5 people to send to - and you will receive 5 envelopes. All we ask is to please mail them by the end of the month. If you are open to being on two lists, let me know - that gives me some extra names so that all the lists come out even.

Any questions - just email me.

Last day to sign up is Friday, Jan 4th. I will send out lists on the 5th or 6th.

I will reply to your email that I have received your sign-up. If you do not get a confirmation from me, resend your email - I try to keep an eye on my spam box. Sometimes first timer's emails end up there.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Happy New Year Rainbow - Christine's foil stamping

This arrived in September for Rainbow's birthday from Christine. It was her first exchange - and if I had time, I would figure out a way to post a video because the entire thing is foil stamped. She must have a machine where she can insert her own art and convert it to the foil stamping. So cool. I got the light right so that the address is clear. I'm wondering how the postal scanners responded to it.

Today seemed like a good day for something super it will be an evening of sparkles and celebrating for some - and snoozing for others, eh?

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Sept PTEX to Grace (Birthday)

There was an original idea. There were pencil lines. There was delay during which I forgot what the original plan was.

It would have been nice to use some of that dark red - but I didn't have anything the right weight.

This completed the purge of the stack of *guys.* Lots of vintage stamps feature guys.

One of the best parts of being done with all the vintage stamps is that I will not ever have to line them up carefully. There must be some trick - but so far, I have not figured it out and have no further interest. While I miss the lick-and-stick stamps - I'm fine with self adhesive.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

JeriW to Rainbow

I've exchanged with three Jeri's. This is Jeri W from Texas. I do not recall who alerted the Texas guild to the exchange but we've had some superb lettering show up in the exchanges. I'm guessing these flowers were made with the rubbery-wedge tool that probably has an official name.

Below is the flip side of the envelope as well as the card. So pretty. It was fun to see a few envelopes that did not go with the rainbow theme - just for variety. But, if there had been 100% rainbows - they would have been just as welcome.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Sept PTEX to Anthea - Vet Memorial Wall

Another set of stamps - finally all done with them. I'll miss them. Any sets of stamps that go over the square surcharge are fun to use - but I am less inspired on square envelopes. That's because I don't do them very often.

I'm tempted to go in and do some little details in white - but concerned that I will mess it up.

Decisions decisions.


I'm adding this on the day after my official retirement from teaching which was October 16th of this year. I've been thinking about retiring and realized that a huge impediment to my hoard reduction is that a ton of my stuff is *might need for class* stuff. So, if I stopped teaching, I could dump it. I think this is going to work. I'm already thinking about the November exchange and did a Google search for Thanksgiving mail art. The third item in the list was from this blog. I clicked on it and went to the blog post. It was funny/not funny that in 2013, three years into the blog and 5 years ago - I had this crazy dream that I would get organized. In a weird way, I do think I am getting closer. But 5 years from now, I might be posting a link to this post - and laughing at myself.

Here is a link to the post --- none of my artwork - but I still like the images.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Out of the Blue from JeriH

JeriH was doing some sifting of her own and ran across this one and dropped it in the mail. She thinks it was done a couple years ago when she had an exhibit and did a few extras that ended up in a stack.

It's a style that has oodles of possibilities - hence the stealworthy label.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Oct PTEX toRachaelT

Rachael's Oct 2017 envelope was the one that inspired 15 of my October exchange envelopes and I was hoping to do something spectacular to Rachael as a thank you. Then, as you may recall there were a series of issues with sticky ink and so on and so forth. Her name ended up as the last one to be done for the month and sometimes I peak at the end. Other times I peak earlier. And then I suppose some months are just a flat line.

While this is not a 100% dud. - it's more like 50-50.

Note-to-self....50-50 might be a realistic goal.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

JP Panter

This is an image of Instagram. I think the artist's last name is Panter. I will do some digging and hopefully at some point come up with a link.

I'm posting it because I can't figure out what the image is. Can anyone of you figure it out?

I think the artist is a woman and I have seen a number of similar envelope that have fish on them.

I guess I could write to that person and ask them to fill in all the blanks....that would be interesting....

Literally - 2 minutes later.
I just Googled Panter calligraphy
and -duh-
that is her website

it does have the j in front of the panter

so you can go look at all kinds of very impressive work.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Gifts - all year long + CaroleV's Nov Envelope

Some of us prefer to spread gifts over the entire year and are not keen on the piles of gifts at this time of year. On the other hand, I respect those who go crazy because that's what they prefer. It's a rainbow-lesson to accept that we can't all like things the same way.

This envelope is from the Rainbow series and I thought of a good gift story for today - the eve of the giftiest day of the year.

During the Swedish Death Cleaning (Sept 2018 era), I amassed an extraordinary pile of extra pens. They filled a large zip-lock bag and I wish I had taken a picture of it. I also wish I had a video of me dropping it off at the Des Moines homeless shelter. I figured the people who work in the office could probably use extra pens. I walked in with my bag and a couple pair of winter boots. A nice man from behind the desk came around to greet me. I handed him the bag of pens and said, "Could you use these?" His eyes lit up and he exclaimed. "Oh, my goodness, YES! Thank you soooo much." I smiled, turned to leave and I could hear him with the delight of a 6 year old who still believes in Santa exclaiming to the woman who was working behind the desk, "Look what WE GOT!" His level of happiness warmed my heart. And then it got better.

I wish I had written down what the woman said. It was so perfect, but, I have forgotten exactly what she said. Even if I had the exact words here - it was the tone of voice that left more of an impression. It always feels good to find a gift that someone really wants or needs. Part of me can't wait to take more pens to the shelter. And I need to leave a note in my file labeled *Final Instructions* to take all the pens to the shelter when I expire. It's not easy for me to part with pens - but knowing they went to people who really needed them has made it a bit easier.

Oops, I just realized that I already posted this envelope - so here is a new one from the November exchange. We can be thankful all year, right?

From Carole V

The back of Carole's envelope

Sunday, December 23, 2018

CathyO to Rainbow

"Nothing says Happy Holidays like rainbows and Janis Joplin," said Jean on October 14.

Remember how my goal was to figure out a system to know what's going on with the blog and be able to find stuff. I'm about 50-50 which may sound like I have not done very well. But, the new me figured out that 50-50 is as good as it gets.

The best part was that I filled the year by the middle of October and have made a good dent into 2019.

The worst part is that I have a mental block on labeling the posts. I'm not going to let that bother me. A ton of searches do just fine by searching a particular word.

And as far as I know, nobody really searches for anything. As long as I write the word *Rainbow* in this post - it will pop up if anyone wants to see all the Rainbow envelopes.

Now, here's the kicker. I have no idea if this is a repeat. If it is...then I owe you something new.
It's not like any of you have been complaining about the chaos. Secretly, I think you just read these posts to feel better about yourselves and how organized you are. Right?

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Black outline - P.S. to the post right below

Curiosity caught me because there was a random envelope on the desk and it was easier to just write on it rather than put it away. So, I tried the black outline and I actually like it. The black stars happened because there was a stray green smudge that needed to be disguised. They bother me - but I might revisit the three color names with black out lines. Notice - there is nothing special about the lettering. You do not have to study calligraphy to write like that.

Shout out to Finnbadger - he did some very nice lettering on his Dec exchange envelope. And as I recall - he did not arrive at the blog and exchanges through a long path of artistic pursuits.

The next post was today's regular post. I just didn't feel like adding to that post.