Every few weeks, a snail mail letter with a stamp from the States falls through the slot in our front door, mixed in with junk mail and bills and leaflets for local cleaners and pizza delivery. My address is carefully printed on the front in my grandma’s slightly shaky handwriting. She tells me about the little things in life: what she’s making for dinner, how the weather is in New York, what she’s been up to with her friends, a touch of touch of gossip. Sometimes she cuts out a cat joke from the local newspaper and tucks it inside. I’ve saved a collection of her letters over the years, sent to my many London addresses over the years or to my university dorm rooms in New York.
My mom keeps a collection of cards on hand in a little basket on her desk which she pulls out to write little notes for any occasion: a quick thank you, a note to say goodbye, or the usual birthday / anniversary / valentine’s day messages she sends to me by post. We email too, of course, but there’s something a bit more special about a hand-written card. It’s not something we think to do so much anymore.
And so a few months ago, I set out to start a little project of making some of my photography into mini notecards. I spent hours digging through the archives, sorting them into collections. I sent these off to the printer who sent me back big sheets of tiny matt prints (the cards are 3 x 3 in – approx 7.6 x 7.6 cm). For a week or so, I spent my evenings tediously cutting around each one of 300 prints with a craft knife. I typed up 10 ways to use the cards and did the same with these, measuring each first with a pencil to get them straight. I designed little bellybands and send the file to the printer I ordered cardboard jewellery boxes and affixed all of the bellybands to these. I glued the prints to white card stock, organized them into their collections and tied them with ribbons. Lastly, I stuck Little Observationist stickers on the back. Then I waited for some sun to stream through the bathroom skylights – the lightest place in our flat – on weekend afternoons in order to take pictures. I edited these, created graphics to represent each collection and finally set up the listings on Etsy.
And finally, they are ready to share (clicking the images will take you to the Etsy listing):
Do you ever send snail mail? Would you? If so, help me kick off #StillLoveSnailMail on Twitter and Instagram. Do you think it still has a place? Why or why not? Share a pic if you’ve received any lately!
If you like these, help me spread the word by sharing the link to this post. It would be very much appreciated!