Saturday, August 31, 2019

Guest Artist - Kim White

On my list of things I will never get around to is positioning stamps in clever drawings. This is from a website -link below - and many of her images are all over Pinterest. If you click on the bottom and go to the next envelope and then click on the word   you will see several more and some of them lead to even more.

If Kim sees this and wants to give me official permission to repost this, that would be fine. Or maybe she wants me to take it down. I'd comply with that request as well.

I guess I did make some stamps into people a couple times. Maybe I can find them. I know there was one to the Brands and one to the Schneiders.

Friday, August 30, 2019

EKelly to Lauren - Aug PTEX

I used up all the rest of the Ellsworth Kelly stamps on the Aug exchange. Even though I loved the stamps - I was really underwhelmed with the ideas that I came up with.

On this one, I pulled out gouache to fill in the loops. It would have been better if the marker was closer in color to the stamp. Going over it a second time makes it rather labored.

It would have been better to sharpen the loops and make the whole name more angular. Maybe.

Once again, if I had a sheet of 20 stamps - all the same - I would probably figure out a good design. Maybe the solution is to never buy stamps where you get 10 or 20 different designs. It would be interesting to research the blog and find out if there was ever a set of 20 different designs where I loved all 20 ideas.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

May PTEX - Taco Time, Drapes and Stamps

Jessica might have noted that I am a big fan of Taco John's. Although she lives in Florida and I doubt they have Taco John's in Florida. I will resist the temptation to research that tidbit.

It took a long time, but, I finally outgrew my taste for fast food. The last time I was at Taco John's I noticed two women, my age, in a very fancy BMW at the drive through. I wanted to ask them if they ever *dined in* or if they were closet TJers. Maybe they were just buying bottled water.

The rest of the exchange envelopes from May. The drapes from Holly freaked out the camera. The envelope is bright yellow and the mat board it is on is the same gray you see in the photo right below. I have no idea why that happened. The potpourri of stamps is from Carolyn.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

To Kathy - Green Kelly Stamp

The words over the top of the Kathy are:

the kathy was written a long time ago and is in a pile to be sent. these are new stamps  so nice and deserve a better envelope but we are on a mission to just get things out the door so this will just have to be what it is with no whining on my part. at the very least it will be something to put on the blog and i truly believe it is a good idea to fill up problem areas with some text or #@%!!$

Yup -- if you have a problem - just write about it. I've noticed that there are a ton of people who are doing very well by writing books about their wretched lives, technically -- the lives they had before they pulled themselves together. I'm thinking I probably have enough fodder in my blog with my 4,200+ blog posts (full of drivel). If there are any book agents out there who want to sell my book to a publisher - lemmekno. The topic of addiction to drugs and alcohol is sooooo saturated. How about some heavy drama on addiction to envelopes and stamps. Who will play me in the movie?

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Apr PTEX from Tina - May from Robert

Tina's bunny is adorable. I love how it is made out of washi tape.
I'm not sure Tina was into lettering when she started exchanging.


I just went to the blog and did a search for *Tina* and - wow - what a trip down memory lane.

Tina has used both computer lettering as well as hand lettering. Some of her envelopes are worthy of being in my compilation of *favorites.* I often ponder how I would do a hall of fame. If anyone has any suggestions, let me know. I do get requests to *do a book* - but I have no idea where to start. Choosing favorites is so subjective.

Below is Robert's. I have deduced that he has been into calligraphy for a while.
Should I satisfy all of us who are curious and require people to fill out a survey on their background and other bits of info that are not personal - but that might be fun to know? Or, are people loyal to the exchange because they can be anonymous. Those people could just submit their reason for preferring  anonymity.

Monday, August 26, 2019

PO Display - Ed / Flag

Ed has a challenging name because it is so short. I suppose I could go out on a limb and write Edward - but some people are not fond of their full name and who knows - a few people are given nicknames and really don't like people making assumptions.

So - it looked a little empty and I decided to add Mr. Zippy. Oh.My.Gosh. That Mr. Zippy art is so primitive. I'd be curious to know the story behind it. Note to self - do some research.

Anyhow - Ed is old enough to remember Mr Zippy and he liked the improved version.

Sunday, August 25, 2019

May PTEX from Lauren

Lauren gets two thumbs up for this card and envelope combo.

The PO gets two thumbs down for adding too many extra markings.

As exchangers know, they are welcome to exchange empty decorated envelopes -or- those who wish to exchange handmade cards may do so.

While I know how to make cards, I do not have time, but Lauren includes one for me as a thank you.

Real time edit. I snipped some redundant chatter about not being on all the exchange lists. Then I jabbered some more about how we all have to find balance. I am taking time on Aug 24th to review the next two weeks of posts to possibly extract some loony comments. Back to the original post--

But, of all the things I have learned in my 6.7 decades one of the top ten truest is this: Things change.

In an instant.

Nothing pithy to add to that. It's a shout out to someone who was telling me how much they objected to change. I bit my tongue. I've learned to keep all my pontificating on the blog. Somehow, it's a more appropriate place.

No. 2 - in the top ten list of things to learn and remember.
Everything has an opposite.

Here is the uber lovely card from Lauren.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

PO Display - Chris / airplane Love

I need a new PITT white marker - but they are so expensive.

Chris had the perfect name for this style. I should add a sample sheet for how to pull that flourish off of any letter at the end of a name.
It is a perfect first-timer flourish.

If you can't do a figure-8 --- you ought not to be doing any other flourishing. Or maybe a simple curl is the easiest.

Shout out to the BHB - I think that particular maneuver in an airplane is called a shondell. Am I right? And ask me where I learned that term. From Richard Black. He was my very first art teacher (Drawing 101) at Drake University. He was a single guy who decided he wanted to learn how to fly. He told us that he had learned a shondell. Why do I remember random things like that? I also remember LOTS of stuff about drawing.

Friday, August 23, 2019

May PTEX from Patty and Susan

These might not be a wonderful combo - but I do love both of them. Mr. Wilson was particularly fond of the yellow one from Susan. The maroon one is from Patty.
It was probably too curly for Mr. Wilson. He's all rugged George Clooney - with a midwestern flair for sensible shoes and wool.

He liked the texture of the yellow envelope.


Apologies for being loopy when I wrote that. I write the posts a couple months in advance and then usually check them right before they pop up to see if I was loopy. In this case, I was. However, in my current state of mind, I cannot think of any less-loopy comments. Today is the day I have to go climb a ladder and paint something at the top of the garage. Wish me luck. I do have an actual degree in painting, although it did not include garages.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Bonus Post - Current situation

Today's regular post is right below.

Happy mail.
Leslie sent me this happy mail even though I was not on her list. She enclosed a nice note. I have a whole stack of happy mail that I need to reply to - but - I have been inundated with all kinds of things - at all points on the spectrum - and the list of stuff I need to do before I head off on my next 2 week mission is (what's that song?)

180 double envelopes - gold ink - ran late
50 picnic envelopes - emergency
50 party envelopes - planned way ahead but they forgot I told them I would be out of town - now I have to take them with me
custom invitations for the picnic
inscribe in bibles for xmas gifts - this client will probably handle a delay
dig out the two toys I promised Ben I would bring - involves climbing on ladder
write out better instructions for the care of houseplants while I am gone
visit with friend who had a fabulous wedding in July that I want to hear about and will only be in town this weekend
visit another friend whose very important grandson will be in town for weekend
find the list with all the things I can't remember off the top of my head

so, if I am so busy, why am I writing a blog post?
to tell all the people I owe mail or email to why you will not be hearing from me.

wish me luck.
also -- I probably won't have time to check the blog posts so everything that pops up from now until June 8 might be loony.

**** Thursday AM - I just read the post and see that I wrote June instead of Sept - yesterday. That is what I mean by loony. I usually read the posts a day or two before they pop up and find all kinds of things that need to be changed - but for the next 17 days - what I wrote a couple months ago is what we are going to see.

PO Display - Melissa / Cartoon stamps

Melissa's is the only one with vintage stamps. I could have used this as an opportunity to use up a bunch of vintage stamps, but I did not want to create a situation where the customers were asking for all the stamps that they saw in the display - but which were no longer available.

Part of me wants to go down to the PO and ask if they are getting any comments from the customers. Part of me does not want to ask - in case the answer is, "Nope, not a single one."


My short term memory is sketchy at best. Apparently, I decide to use none of the vintage stamps and I used a bunch of smaller denomination stamps. As I recall, it was very challenging to figure out how many to use. Addition is another skill that has become very sketchy.

I discovered this when I posted the picture of the whole display, which will show up in a few days, after I get to the end of the first PO display.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Two PTEX from J. Gurantz

J has exchanged twice. I'm not sure how they both ended up in the same stack. I tend to do this by month. Some envelopes arrive late.

I ponder changing the deadline to earlier in the month - but there are some regulars who are always sending at the very last minute. And some of those late ones are spectacular. All y'all know that this is a *no stress* exchange - so I'll leave the deadline as is -- and I am 100% sure that nobody cares about any of this.

So why did I waste my time talking about it.

I'll tell you why.

Mr. Wilson said we were going to The Foundry at 3 pm.
It is 4 pm.
I am hungry.
He know what happens when I get hungry.
Does he even remember we were going to The Foundry?
Should I just go eat something else.

Here is the other envelope from J

She had the sweetest little sticker on the back.
Mr. Wilson never tells me that I rock.
Do you think I will be laughing about the whole Foundry incident when I read this in August?
It is June 8.

Oh wait, there's more.
This was the artwork inside the first envelope.
I did not need to fill up all this space with my whining.
I'm too hungry to bother deleting.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

PO Display - Sharon / WPA

The display needed some variety in envelope color and the WPA stamp looks great on kraft paper.

The black name was with a Faber Castell PITT brush marker. The white lines are Sakura Decorese gel pen.

Monday, August 19, 2019

May PTEX from Maureen and Lynne

Maureen did a pretty liner for the envelope, a coordinating card (with a note on the back) and the lettering is monochromatic - which I always love.

I paired hers with Lynne's because they are both calligraphers and their envelopes show how lovely an envelope is when you have really pretty penmanship. And a few dots - if you are in the mood.

Note to self- do a search for *dots* and see how many times you have mentioned dots in the past 9 years.

Double note to self: your blog's 10 year anniversary is coming up in Feb of 2020. Will there be a celebration?

6:30 am, today -- I just counted - 134 posts mention dots.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

PO Display - Lovie / Love stamp

Obviously, I had to use a Love stamp on Lovie's. The address on this one is wrong. The main PO is 1165 2nd Avenue. I don't think anyone noticed.

Again - it is not an overly inspired design, but, it's fun.

I sorta miss having last names to go on the envelopes - but didn't want to put fake ones in. I pondered writing Lastname. But decided that was goofy.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

May PTEX from Fatima and CathyO

Fatima has done some folded envelopes previously, but I am pretty sure this is the first one where she made a large drawing/painting.

It would have been so much fun to file my envelopes by sender - but too late to establish that system.

I think CathyO's is a rubber stamp. That Peace rose stamp is so versatile. It didn't grab me when it first came out - but it's really grown on me.

Friday, August 16, 2019

PO display - Porsha/Kelly

We pretended that it was Porsha's birthday. My display envelopes are not overly alternative. I figured the PO did not want me to be putting wild ideas out there. I also kept the lettering pretty simple so that hopefully people would say, "Gee, I could do that."

I wish I would have added some pink and black confetti.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

May PTEX from CaroleV, Heidi and CarolynC

May was a bumper crop of flowery envelopes. I love how they color coordinated, too.

Carole's is probably a rubber stamp  but I am not sure how she got all the different colors. It is a mistake to load posts and then come back later to write the blurbs - when the envelopes are no longer on my desk.

Plus -- I have lost a whole bunch of images of my own envelopes. Being organized is 100% off my radar with respect to the blog. Organizational skills will be limited to things that actually have consequences. Banks, drivers license, etc.

By the way - there seems to be some kind of star that we need to get on our driver's licenses to go through TSA at the airport. I do not want to post inaccurate information, so if you need to know what's what - do a search.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

PO display - Lena/Kelly

The main PO invited me to put up a display of decorated envelopes. I addressed them to the people who work there, which included Lena. I have to type the name so that it will pop up when I do searches.

I did these in June which is when the Ellsworth Kelly stamps came out. I could probably do about 20 different designs based on a grid - or 50 -

As you may recall, Natalie is my contact person at the PO. I have been doing business with her for 20 years. If you do a search you can see other envelopes that people sent to her when I invited them to do so.

She was not a big fan of the Ellsworth stamps -- until I put up the display.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

May PTEX from Maureen, Lisa, and TrishM

My granddaughter was visiting when Scooby Doo arrived. She loved it. She loved all the flowery ones, too.

Scooby Doo is by Maureen.

Lisa did the adorable hedge hog.

The castle is by Trish.

I can't think of hedgehogs without remembering the time my daughter was trying to set up a meeting with someone who said in reference to a specific time, "I can't come then because I have to take my hedgehog to the vet." My daughter asked her if that was an actual reason or just something she said when she needed an excuse. I keep thinking I will remember the line when I need an excuse that is better than *I don't feel like it.*

Monday, August 12, 2019

June PTEX - Last one - to Heidi

In June, I had 33 people sign up to exchange. In the past, I lost my edge when I tried to do more than 30 envelopes. So, I made up two lists without me on the list. That left me with 20 - which I thought would be fine. I still burned out. And then at the very end, I was checking the list to make sure I had them all and somehow I had forgotten to do Heidi's. Curiously, I ended up liking hers a lot.

I saw that I still had the Washington stamp - so figured I would use that one and find one to go with it. I grabbed a red Copic and it was so nice and juicy- I liked the lettering better than all the others.

On the screen - it looks blah. I can't figure out why that happens. I was afraid to do the little leaves in dark green - and now I'm thinking maybe they needed to have a little more oomph.

Just glad to have June out of the way. I am thinking of doing ZERO envelopes in July. Or - only put myself on the lists that need one more person to make the numbers come out even. By the time this pops up, we will know what I did.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

May PTEX from the Paper Ladies

Three people used paper to make their own envelopes.

Top, GraceE used a Paper Source bag and a fun assortment of vintage stamps. Then she collaged the address on the bottom.
Fun and whimsical.

Inta, from the Netherlands sent the B-C-D envelope that looks like it is from a catalogue. The bird stamp is so cute.

Faye lucked out with her handmade envelope. Previous ones were chewed up by the postal machinery. This one came through OK. But, I still recommend a sturdier piece of paper inside if you have very light weight paper. Really nice match on the colors.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

June PTEX - Marker flowers

Hmmmmm. I do not recall how this happened. Someone brought me some darling little envelopes with notepaper - from Venice. The paper was nice to write on. But, somehow I ended up without names on two of them. Strange.

I do remember doing all of the flowers first and then filling in names. I have my favorite and my least favorite. But, I'll keep that to myself. I don't want to play favorites.

Friday, August 9, 2019

May PTEX from Janet and Chuck

Top envelope from Janet. She noticed the nice placement of the dots and turned them into flowers that are inspired by the eclipse. Very clever. There is some nice sparkle on the centers of the flowers.

I ganged hers with Chucks because the colors look nice. Black and white on gray is always lovely.

That extra cancel on Janet's looks just fine. Sometimes those postal glitches work out OK.

I like the name and city state all joined. Did anyone even notice. Probably not. Breaks between words and punctuation are rules that we can bend. Sure, you lose some legibility when you connect everything - but in this case - the words are so BIG that there is no way you can misread them.

Thursday, August 8, 2019

June PTEX to Maureen

This was the last one I did with the vintage postcard stamps. I still have about half the page left. It will be interesting to see if I can come up with an idea that I love.

This idea is fine - but it takes f.o.r.e.v.e.r.
I don't mind spending a lot of time - but, I like it to be when I am actually doing something. The time is in picking up and putting down.

A little planning would have been nice.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

PTEX to Viola from Marie and Trish

These might be the last two to Viola - the series of Happy 99th Birthday mail that exchangers sent.

Marie's dangling hearts are adorable. Nice detail to put a couple hearts in the address, too.

Also, Trish did a very fun heart design that drew oohs and ahhs from guests at the birthday party.