Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Lost Art of Letter Writing

I always get saddened when I hear about the current state of the Post Office, how they are losing money and how they are having to cut back on services.

When I was growing up in England, I had several pen pals around the world, and I eagerly looked forward to receiving their letters and reading their news.

The postman slid our mail (we called it "the post") through a slot in the front door and it landed with a thud.  I loved it as my mum skimmed through the post, separating the bills from the personal items, waiting to see if there was something there for me.

Sadly, those days are gone. With the advent of email, text messages and Facebook, it's easy to keep in touch with friends and family around the world without having to make a trip to the post office or buying a stamp.

Don't get me wrong, I love being able to share photos and notes via the internet. But I do miss the days of sending and receiving notes and cards for any occasion or even "just because".  There was something more personal about it.

Nowadays, it seems that all I get in the mail are begging letters from charities, or clothing and garden catalogs.

I can't even complain that all I ever get are bills, because I pay all my bills online, and so most of the bills I get are ebills!

So what am I going to do to save the Post Office?

Well, I'm going to start my own personal challenge to get back in the habit of sending "smail mail" letters, notes and cards again. And I'd like to encourage others to join me.

To that end, I'm going to highlight some of the wonderful stationery, letterhead and stamps that are available on Zazzle.

My first selection is this letterhead with a vintage world map in the background., from cutencomfy. I've always loved the look of old maps and atlases, so I really like this design.  It would be perfect for sending personal letters and notes to friends and family around the world.

Vintage World Map Atlas Historical Design Customized Letterhead
Vintage World Map Atlas Historical Design Customized Letterhead by cutencomfy

As I have mentioned before on my blog, I'm a fan of owls. I love hearing them in the night, and I like them decorating my home.  I found this Musical Tree Owl letterheard from CuteLittleTreasures particularly appealing.

This elegant letterhead with a side border of Vincent Van Gogh Branches with Almond Blossom by Ladiebug can be personalized with your name. Adding personal touches like this really enhances your correspondence.

Vincent van Gogh Branches with Almond Blossom Personalized Letterhead
Vincent van Gogh Branches with Almond Blossom Personalized Letterhead by Ladiebug

I really like this elegant damask letterhead from cutencomfy. It's the sort of timeless design that can be used for personal or business correspondence.

Back in my penpal days, when I lived in England, and had penpals in Europe, the U.S. and Australia, the different stamps on the envelopes really fascinated me.  I probably should have taken up stamp collecting as my hobby, but regretably, I never did.

I've enjoyed creating postage stamps with my designs on Zazzle, a couple of which I posted above.  You can see more of them here.
There are some beautiful postage stamp designs of Zazzle (I have a feeling I wasn't the only designer on Zazzle who thought it was really neat to be able to create an official stamp with one of my own designs!)

Below are just a few and then I'll add a Linky Tool for my fellow Zazzle designers to add links to their own stationery and postage stamp designs.

Fall is my favorite season I think.  I love anything will fall colors on it and this postage stamp from photographyvicky certainly fits that bill!

I've always loved the Impressionists, such as Monet and Renoir. I love this postage stamp from masterpiececafe featuring Monet's Water Lilies.

Water Lilies, Monet, Vintage Impressionism Flowers Postage Stamp
Water Lilies, Monet, Vintage Impressionism Flowers Postage Stamp by MasterpieceCafe
Although I'm originally from England, I now live (and have lived for the past 30 years) in Texas. So to me there is no more iconic flower that the Bluebonnet, the State Flower of Texas. This postage stamp from Rossicards features a patch of glorious blue blooms.


Here's something I've never mentioned before in this blog -- I'm a multi-cat mom. I never meant to end up with a house full of cats, but when a stray cat showed up in our back yard a couple of years ago, looking very malnourished, we started leaving feed out for her. She seemed to live in the thicket in the then undeveloped lot next to our house. She would eat and then disappear. One day, we got to find out what was keeping her so busy next door when we looked out to see her leading her FOUR KITTENS under the fence and across the lawn to our patio.

Long story short, a few weeks later, we caught all five of them, got them spayed and neutered and added them to our household. Callie (the mom) bonded strongly with another stray we had taken in and they are now inseparable. They all live indoors and we can't imagine life without them.

This long ramble about our cat family is by way of introduction to this cute "World's Best Cat Mom" postage stamp by BlessingArtAnimals.

There are so many wonderful designs of letterhead, stationery and postage stamps on Zazzle, I could go on and on.

Now it's your turn. If you are a designer on Zazzle you are invited to add a link to your Easter themed designs in the Linky Tool below. Use Option 1 in the Link Widget on the page of the Zazzle product/design you'd like to add. It will show up below as a small thumbnail and when clicked on, will link directly to your product.