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The lost art of writing letters (and baking)

I have to admit, I am something of a post geek. I get enormously excited when a letter or postcard drops through my letterbox. I love sending packages, letters and presents and knowing the pleasure the person the other end will get from receiving it. Since I've moved into the new house my passion for post has increased - seeing the Postman walk up our front garden, and feeling the weight of post on the doormat as I push open the door after a long day at work makes me all kinds of happy. Since we've moved out of the city centre, and a forty minute drive from all my friends, there's just something about living in a new area and a new town that makes me want to make that walk to the village post office and send something - to old friends, or new ones.

One of my goals for this year has been to send more letters and packages. When I wrote this I had in mind that I would send cards, photos and little gifts to friends and family. And whilst I have been doing this, I've also discovered several websites where you can do the same, but to people you don't already know. My favourite so far is http://sendsomething.net, where you can set up a profile, put your likes and dislikes, and search the profiles of other people to find something to send. I have already sent two postcards, and received a postcard and a lovely letter and some assorted ephemera from a girl in the US.

Letter sent from someone lovely on sendsomething.net,
and a postcard from a friend

Before I started delving into the online world of sending post to people you don't know, I had never heard of mail art. Mail art is basically sending art through the post - usually via beautifully decorated, illustrated or collaged envelopes.  I pinched the below examples from Bianca's Tumblr 'Fuck Yeah Mail'.  Bianca also has a lovely blog where she posts her own amazing mail art.  All of the below are from a project called Mail Me Art, who has held exhibitions and published books of mail art.


Now, I absolutely cannot draw or paint, but I wanted to get a slice of the pretty envelope pie, so I've been furiously gathering bits and bobs to send and to decorate my post - envelopes, stickers, cute sellotapes and postcards. The craft room now even has it's own mail drawer...

I have also signed up to a website called Postcrossing; a sort of postcard swap website that means you can send and receive postcards from all around the world. I've made some of my own postcards on Moo.com so I can get involved.

Are any of you post enthusiasts? Or do you prefer 'electronic communication'? Also, if you fancy sending me some post or receiving something from me, just drop me an email and let me know.

As you will probably all know by now, one of my other loves, is baking and cooking, and I have been baking up a storm this week to say thankyou to my friends at work for buying me a lovely 'new home' card and Ikea voucher.  I made mint aero cupcakes from this recipe ....




And also a very, very naughty but utterly delicious chocolate cake from this recipe.  Yum!


Finally, I'm going to finish off this post with an apology. Today I moved into my new study/craft room and so I am writing this sat at a desk, in a comfy chair, looking out on the front garden.  However, prior to this (and since our move), my laptop was in the utility room and I could only use it if I crammed myself into a space between the washing machine and the cupboards. Because of this I have been a little bit absent from Blogger and I have missed out on lots of your posts and haven't been able to comment. But don't worry - I am back with a vengeance and looking forward to catching up on what I missed! Thanks for being patient with me :)

25 comments

  1. oh I love post! I've made a couple of blog posts about it actually. I've just signed up for these websites so cant wait to get involved!

    I've been looking for a penpal/post swap for a while. my emails kirstydotburton@hotmail.co.uk if you'd like :)

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  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog, your blog is so cute- new follower!

    That mail art is amazing! I might explore into this as I love getting post! Thanks for the links :) x

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  3. Wow, sendsomething.net sounds like such an awesome idea. & that little cut-out postman with the package in his hand is so cute! :D


    Day By Diva
    Day By Diva
    Day By Diva

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  4. aw its sad how these past times areforgotten. lovely idea.

    Helen, X
    http://areyoudressingupordressingdown.blogspot.com

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  5. Oh wow, I adore the mail art, especially the last one. <3 I love sending and receiving mail (I have 3 penpals) so I'm definitely going to check out those links. :) x x

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  6. What a great idea, I'm definitely going to check out the sites!

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  7. Im going to look into joining in with the letters and postcards, it is such a cute idea. I love receiving and sending letters and I need do it anymore! I miss it from being younger and sending my cousin long letters about Steps and Spice girls ahaha!
    those cakes look amazingg! YUM :)xxx

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  8. Love this post! I used to have a penpal in Japan when I was younger and getting letters from her was SO exciting because she'd often include Japanese stationery/stickers with her letters!
    Hope you're settling well into your new home x

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  9. Those cupcakes look lush!

    You are a girl after my own heart my dear, I LOVE post! Sending and receiving! I too have been building up a stock of prettifying things, I also got some Cath Kidson Labels for envelopes for my birthday! I cant wait to use them!

    xxx

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  10. Those mint Aero cupcakes look absolutely amazing. I miss having a penpal, handwritten letters are full of nostalgia and are such a treat to receive in the post, I just wish I had time to commit to being a good penpal again haha! Hope you're settling in well to the new house Rosie (: xxx

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  11. I LOVE your blog! :) love the idea of posting letters and those arty designs are so nice..it reminds me of writing to my friends in primary school when we left and went to different schools! :D those cupcakes look so gorgeous!
    xx

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  12. i love real mail...and dessert!!

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  13. I have two pen pals and I love nothing more than writing them a letter on some nice writing paper :) I am def going to give the aero cupcakes a whirl too! x

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  14. I feel exactly the same way you do about receiving post! It’s that little gesture that really does go a long way/brightens up someone’s day. I have lots of stationary, I can’t resist pretty stuff for decorating envelopes and letters xx

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  15. Just found your blog, it's so cute.

    The cupcakes look delicious, I'm definitely going to try disastrously to make them. Xx

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  16. You can't beat old school mail! Postcards are my absolute favourite, I've got shoe boxes full of them, saved up over the years, from all over the place. I used Moo to make up mini postcards and sent out info for our wedding gift 'wishlist' to our invited guests- they were fab! Your cupcakes look delicious too, yum! yum! yum! x

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  17. I love getting post! I get so happy when i get postcards especially. All those sites sound really interesting. I think i might check them out for myself. Thank you for sharing them! I hope you're all moved in and settled. :) x

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  18. So lovely. I went to the mail me art exhibition this year and it was brilliant. x hivennn p.s enter my giveaway?

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  19. Craft room?! Mail drawer?! A girl after my own heart <3 haha electronic mail defo isnt as special as 'real' handwritten mail. Dont think it can ever replace it. Are you a fan of postsecret? Hope the housey stuff is all going well missy, big love to you xx

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  20. Recently started writing letters again via blogging, and you're quite right, it's a little neglected in some ways and there is something a bit magical about receiving post. Loving the mail art pictures and thanks for the sendsomething.net link.

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  21. your new hobby is really interesting and the things that peopole sent you are absolutely amazing!
    aw, and the cake looks too good. deff craving it.
    x

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  22. I shouldn't have stumbled across your blog now, it is making me so hungry! I loove getting post especially when away at uni.

    Helen, X
    areyoudressingupordressingdown.blogspot.com

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  23. those cupcakes look amazing!! I love receiving and sending letters, when i was younger i had a bunch of penpals and i think i used to run to the letter box atleast 4 times a day until the mail arrived. it was so exciting receiving letters. unfortunately now i don't have any penpals and the only letters i receive are bills. if you want a penpla though, let me know, i live in Australia though so postage may be a bit expensive:)
    xk
    http://alazygirlsguidetobeauty.blogspot.com/

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  24. your blog gets better and better with each post i read and with each picture i see. i can't believe it!

    you get the loveliest things in the mail!! where do people even find those kinds of things? wow

    and those cakes look delicious! especially the cupcakes. mmmm :D

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  25. you should send post here http://www.postpals.co.uk/

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Thank you in advance for your lovely comments, they mean the world to me! If you have a question or want to get in touch, tweet me at @rosieoutlook.