Wednesday, April 30, 2014

new envelope fold from jan

 i sent jan a link to another way to fold a piece of paper into an envelope. we like the fold, but it has a lot of places to get stuck in the machines at the post office, so it needs double face tape or glue or just tape over the top. jan used packing tape.

i really like the choice of stamps. they are perfect with this paper. and i like the stars on the back. they are actually stickers that i could use on a piece of return mail to jan.

here is the link to directions for the fold.

and thank you to tim texas for the amazing postcards. i will add them to the list...which is about a month out on scheduling. my new policy is to just add mail at the end and rarely bump posts to put in something more recent. i am trying to streamline the amount of time i spend at the computer and just keep a ton of content lined up. my goal is to be at least a year ahead of myself. not sure why....maybe to balance out all the places i am woefully behind.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

thank you carolyn

this is the second envelope from carolyn. her boat is one of my favorites. and i love this one, too. the photo on the birthday card is gorgeous and the asparagus spear is a perfect addition to the envelope.

this is the first of the birthday cards i received. i am posting them in alphabetical order - by artist's first name :-)

Monday, April 28, 2014

carol's houses

 back in march, i had a cold and spent an entire day just puttering on the computer. i remembered to check carol's blog and saw a delightful mini quilt that she made. i thought the design would be fun to do with chisel tip markers. the square parts were fun, but the triangles were hard. i can't decide if the black outlines help or detract. this is just a rough layout.maybe i'll come up with a better way to do the triangles.

you can see her quilt on her blog

thanks carol for the fun idea :-)

Sunday, April 27, 2014

hillarian treat

i need to go back through all my posts and label all the ones from nancy hills. they are among my favorites and infinitely inspirational. if i ever run out of ideas i know all i have to do is flip through envelopes from nancy and i will be inspired. i never feel like mine are as good as hers, (at the hillarian style) but i have so much fun copying her style and even though mine aren't quite as good, i am always pleased with the outcome. the point i'm to *copy* a style you like, when you have run out of ideas. you won't be able to copy it exactly, but you will develop some new ideas and can make your own version.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

not just envelopes

i decided to mention letters today even though i maintain a pretty tight focus on envelopes. the image is a letter to mark twain
which i saw in an article linked below.

it's a fun article about letters. i hardly ever write a note or letter when i send an envelope. but, to me, my blog posts are like the notes and letters i would send, if i put anything in the envelopes.

the reason i do not like to write notes by hand is that i am the world's worst speller and i have become addicted to spell check. whenever i am trying to write a note, i am constantly stumped by words that i can't spell. so i end up trying to express myself using only words i can spell and then, it doesn't sound like me.

the article appeared in BrainPickings, which is a wonderful archive of articles and reviews. anyone needing a new place to surf will probably find interesting articles by looking along the side panels

here is the full article:

Friday, April 25, 2014

replying to comments

i just opened the comments section of my blog and see many comments (and questions) that i did not realize were there. so, i will post a reply to all of them -soon-

i am not sure when -soon- will be. there are several jobs with tight deadlines that will monopolize most of my time.

and since i always need to have an image with a post - i thought this was nifty. they do not show how to fold the top. i hope i have time to add some steps so that you can see how to do a tidy top.

i would score the envelope, top to bottom, to make it more box-like.

hendrix attempt

the scanner did not want to scan the base color of the lettering. it was a crayola marker that was a pretty good match for the guitar on the stamp. this is pretty minimal. but, i like pulling an idea from a detail on the stamp.

the green lettering is G-tec. again, the scanner does not do it justice. it looks much better in real life. other bloggers agree that some images are better than the original and then other times, the original is so much better than the scan.

hester posted a question in the comment section a couple days ago, asking who designed the jimi hendrix stamp.
the link will take you to a nice site that has many links to information about stamps.
it is a good place to see all the new stamps as they are released
like this one

so, two internet addresses to keep in mind  - gives you ZIP codes, cost of mailing items, regulations, and best of all, you can order stamps online and the delivery charge is less than $2.  - articles and tons of information about stamps. scroll down on each page. check every tab.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

best of 2014 nomination

i suppose i look a little self centered nominating this one....but it wouldn't matter who it was addressed to, it could have been one that smash addressed to herself. what i love is the way the stamp is a necklace. it's a very logical way to use the stamp...but, i didn't think of it, so it's in the running for best envelope of the year.

and the p.o. gets an honorable mention for not adding anything unsightly.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

best of 2014 nomination

i am nominating this for the best envelope of 2014. it arrived on march 24th with another envelope that is also nominated. i will post it tomorrow. any guesses who sent it?

i seriously doubt that i can come up with anything as good as this to go with the jimi hendrix stamp. of course i will try. johnny cash wins *most versatile stamp ever.* might win hardest stamp of the year. those harry potter stamps have been hard for me, but i think they came out in 2013.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

finnbadger's idea

back on march 24th, finnbadger suggested that the envelope that day looked like a strip of film. i had made some letters out of film, but had never put letters into the film itself, so, that seemed like a very good idea. i was pretty happy with how this one turned out. i did it just from memory. i will now take the time to google images of *film* and i am sure i will see some ways to improve the film-y-ness of the border. for one thing, i think the little squares need to be larger. once again, johnny is the best stamp. i guess i need to buy more. i only have 3 left and it was hard to part with this one.

Monday, April 21, 2014

my va-ca mail - smash

what do the drums have to do with the year of the horse?
just curious. i suppose i could buy the stamps and read the back.
or i could google.
but, i am in a swirling vortex of chores/activities/work-avoidance.

this is very pretty.
thank you :-)

Sunday, April 20, 2014

my birthday mail

thank you to everyone who sent mail for my birthday. i was out of town again, and was so happy to have a huge stack when i finally got home. who knew your flight could be cancelled because there was so much sunshine and the pilot forgot his sunglasses and did not want to get crowsfeet from squinting.

these will be appearing individually in the future. i just wanted everyone who sent birthday greetings that i was very happy to hear from you.

if you missed my birthday, it will roll around again next year. and if anyone wants a birthday card from me, just tell me the week before you want me to send it. i have been thinking of doing one birthday idea a week, just to remind people to be sure to send birthday greetings. everyone enjoys getting mail on their birthday.

egon schiele

this is an envelope from egon schiele to carl reininghaus 5/23/1913 but i lost the link. egon is long gone, so i don't think he'll mind that i don't have any link. i have always liked his art, so it was fun to come across this. his art is not light and flowery. neither is his envelope

Saturday, April 19, 2014

i [heart] ferns

i love ferns. i saw a zentangle tutorial on pinterest. i didn't follow it exactly, but, it was fast and fun. i used a g-tec for the fern. then i used walnut ink and a nikko g nib for the name.

here is a link to the website where the tutorial is posted

Friday, April 18, 2014

jan's file folders

 these are actual file folders. the top one in each photo is the practice one. the bottom one is the second one she did. the bottom photo shows the side that will have the address. she decided that she did not like that blue around the address *label* although i think it will be just fine after she layers over it with a bunch of white gel pen.

she used all the postoid rubber stamps in her collection as well as a variety of stickers. the only thing i would add, it they were mine would be googlie eyes.

i guess on the one with the blue and hot pink, i would add an intense yellow blob in the upper right corner. jan already knows that i like thing in groups of three. i know the stamp will go in the upper right corner...but, i think a blob of bright yellow would be just fine in the back ground.

i want to steal this idea. i do not have rubber stamps any more....but i still have stickers.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

exploration post card

 jeri hobart enteried a piece in this exhibit. julie wildman did the logo on the front. that looks like jeri's addressing on the back. wish i could see the exhibit. i am sure there are many wonderful pieces. i hope jeri sends me a scan of her piece so i can post it, too.

in the meantime, i will be writing some longer names around the corner in big loops and filling in some of the loops :-)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

head pecker

cathy sent this fun envelope with the bird pecking on mark twain's head. so instead of a woodppecker it is a headpecker.

she used colored pencil.
nice colors
and this would look pretty with the fern stamps too.

could have done without the double cancel.

i'm thinking it will be fun to find other combinations of stamps that look nice together but also involve some kind of interaction between the subject matter.

i have been hording the coffee pot stamps. now i need a twain stamp, so i can have coffee pouring over his head
and the spill will spell out the name or zip code or just one letter....

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

jan - capsule font

i made a video showing how to make these letters. then, when i tried to upload it, the computer went berserk and it took me 4 re-boots and a full-blown exorcism to get the computer back in order so now i am afraid to try again. i need to find someone who will let me upload and post videos on their computer.

i call it capsule font because the shapes remind me of pill capsules. i remember when contac allergy medicine was invented and i thought they were beautiful. i loved the little polka dots in the clear end. i just enjoyed a surf through google images of old vintage contac images. i missed jan's cold. i would have turned this into an adorable get well soon card/envelope. but she's all better now. next year, she should alert me as soon as she comes down with a cold.

Monday, April 14, 2014


this is one chuck received in an exchange. the C reminds me of some of my ribbon writing, with the extra detail of being broken into segments. a nice stealworthy idea. the subtle color is a nice way to tie in the stamp with the design.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

smash - doodley-doo

i hear a stampede of people running to their drafting tables to steal this idea.

anyone wondering why i have been posting only envelopes from smash? i line up my posts ahead of time. and while clearing out the 1500 emails in my inbox, i discovered quite a few from smash, so, i decided to just post them all in one series. i may bump a few, here and there if i have things that i need to insert. but this is a good way to insure that the blog continues, uninterrupted until i go to that happy scriptorium in the sky.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

smash - owls

very fun owl design. i noticed on Pinterest that one of the earlier owl envelopes by smash that i posted is one of the envelopes that is re-pinned a LOT. owls must be very loveable birds. and there are so many kinds. there was one in my back yard and i wanted to figure out which kind and google *owls* and found a gazillion different kinds. i never did find out which one was in my back yard.

my favorite on this envelope is the one in the upper right corner. although i like all of them. thank you!

Friday, April 11, 2014


this one is really fun. notice how she took a variety of elements from the stamps and scattered them all over the envelope. she also decided to use lots of colors rather than just the red and black. she used red and very little black. i think more black in her artwork would have been distracting. very fun. thank for sharing it with us.

Thursday, April 10, 2014


i love the rectangle within a rectangle and the white space at the top. the proportion of the inky rectangle repeats the proportion of the stamp, which is a different proportion from the envelope. this is a nice design principle to use when composing your envelopes.

it can be so frustrating when the colors in a stamp are perfect, but the proportion is all wrong for the other elements on the envelope.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

smash hiding the stamps

this is from a series where smash was hiding the stamps. it looks a bit like a map to me.
it also appeals to the part of me that likes grids. not tight grids, just some horizontals and verticals.

very pretty.
thank you for sharing

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

8th of the month - rena/mccreedy

4th month with an article link.

this is a link to kathy mc creedy. that name rings a bell. but, it just goes ding ding ding. i can't connect it to anything. but, she has an article and links if you feel like surfing today.

i like this one. those three stamps go together because they are large/medium/small, in pattern. and they share red.

Monday, April 7, 2014

from jan

i used to give jan a hard time because i sent her quite a bit of mail and was not getting anything in return. then she sent a couple things and had some reason that i should not post them on the blog. so i am posting this one before she tells me why i shouldn't post it.

i love it. the colors are so perfect. it is glossy paper. it might have been a calendar. she has a typewriter and types her labels.

thanks, jan. it was a happy-mail-day at 420.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

jeri's orange butterflies

of course, this will look better when her address is filled in. how lucky that 4 of these stamps adds up to enough to send it.

the white is just gel pen. someday i hope to do a video on how to fit any wording into any space. there are a few tricks. stacking is the most obvious one. maybe i should make a list before i do the video.

jeri sent me this image of how it looked after it arrived