Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Bonus post - envelope tip

Today's regular post is below this one.

This popped up on Pinterest - I like the words by Thomas Edison: When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this - you haven't. It looks like something that would be fun to do on the left side of an envelope.

I just heard from an exchanger who had an envelope returned because the address was on a label that had fallen off. My son who is now working at the USPS on the *keep-the-machines-running* team tells me that all of the machines run really hard 24/7/365 - and they only turn them off for regular servicing. Flimsy mail is the worst. It gets chewed up. Each machine is full of shredded stuff and bits that fall off the mail art.

Things like washi tape, puffy stickers, collaged bits, labels - or anything adhered to the envelope - might  fall off and contribute to the problem. The machines have lots of moving parts and they are not gentle. They dislike rigid, inflexible mail as much as they dislike the flimsy stuff. That is why the USPS charges extra if the item is rigid. If you don't believe me -- check the website. 

So -- as much as I like all the collage and added bits and pieces - I am going to recommend that people stick to the basics. Markers, ink, pencil, or paint - on paper. There are special adhesive papers and labels that are meant for mail. The packaging usually indicates that it has a PERMANENT adhesive. That stuff really sticks - so it is fine to use.

I'm sure this is not welcome advice - but, I'd rather share my insider info. The olden days, when people lovingly sorted each piece of mail by hand are over. Oh dear, now I am curious to know exactly when the first automated sorting machines were invented. 

I guess that quote at the top could be put to good use here:
If you really want to make collaged artwork - make it and put it inside a plain envelope. There is nothing magical about the artwork being on the outside of the envelope.


P.S. I just learned that the envelope that was returned to the exchanger was made out of fabric. The machines are not going to like fabric. You would need to put something like that inside a clear acetate outer envelope.


1 comment:

  1. I've received some wonderful quilted postcards, but they have all been hand canceled. For a lot of mail art, going to the P.O. and getting the mail canceled by hand is a good idea.