’ve felt victorious ever since I placed our last Christmas card into the mailbox. Such a satisfying feeling. Now that most of them have arrived at their destinations, I can share the finished product!
As I mentioned in Part One, the goal of this year’s cards was to streamline the process, making it as efficient as possible while still including some handmade charm.
I think the goal was accomplished…ready to see?
The next part of the cards happened in stages. It would be false advertising to say that this took no time at all, but in comparison to last year it was SO much more sane.
Putting the stamps in piles of $0.34 was one of the most tedious parts of the process, but worth every painstaking second.
Step one involved gluing on vintage postage stamps. A bonus of sending out postcards instead of regular cards was that the postage was less! One point for the budget! (The above postcard was heading to Canada – so since it’s international, it cost the same as mailing a letter…at first I was indignant about this but then considered the miraculous fact that I can send a piece of mail from Miami to Alberta for $1.15. It’s actually a steal when you think about it. United States Postal Service, I’m your biggest fan!)
Ha, some of the international letters were nearly completely eaten up by the stamps. That’s what happens when you need to get to $1.15 with stamps hovering around 8 cents. It allowed me to practice precision with my calligraphy.
After the stamps were complete, I got down to the business of using my new-found calligraphy skills for the addresses.
My work station was a tornado of Rolodex cards (yes, I believe that I may be the only person under the age of 50 with one of those), calligraphy supplies, and postcards. I had to spread them out because the ink needed a chance to dry before they were stacked.
I think Bobby was proud because I kept this craft explosion completely confined to my desk. Such an improvement!
Since I just dove head first into calligraphy and didn’t learn the alphabet up-front, I had to test out each letter in my notebook before I wrote it onto a postcard.
My calligraphy game can (and will) certainly improve, but I just got such immediate gratification from seeing the postcards go from blank slates to being inked with swirls and flourishes.
It took me a number of afternoons to get all of the addresses written, but since I had planned ahead I didn’t feel time crunched. And I had Justin Bieber holiday tunes to keep me company as I cranked these out so all was right with the world.
Is there anything more gratifying than holding a giant stack of beautiful mail art ready to go out into the world? No, I think not.
And with that, it’s a wrap! Another Nixon Peterson Christmas mailing in the books.
What a fabulous card, Grace! I LOVE the photos and the drawings. The alligator is precious… only you could make an alligator cute!!
Haha, thanks, Gini! All of those Louisiana swamp tours paid off!
I’m excited to see I was included on the Christmas postcard list! That will be a fun thing to return to. :)
Your calligraphy is looking great, it’s got such personality! (And never fear, I too have a Rolodex, they are ever useful.)
The print from Moo looks really great too! So much color! And as always, seeing all those vintage stamps placed together is beautiful. The post office really is a miraculous place, and I’m sure the postman or postwoman delivering your cards enjoys seeing all those stamps and calligraphy.
When I was younger, I wanted to work at the post office, just so I could see all the mail, packages, and things coming through at Christmas and guess where they were headed. There’s something about sorting mail and dreaming of faraway places that still appeals to me.
Thanks for all the pictures and insight into your Christmas card process.
I loved squeezing your long Japanese address on there. :) I think the cards look so good when there’s lots of text!
At one point, I dreamed of being an intern for Post Secret to see all the amazing secrets that never get published on the website and in books…so I can relate to your post office dreams. :)
Thanks for the calligraphy compliments, I’m having such a fun time with it. Slowly but surely learning the alphabet now!
They look great, Grace! So excited to check the mail box when I get back!
Yay, thanks Leah! I’m seriously so glad I got your suggestions and that you mentioned moo.com. I always know I can count on your for a good brainstorming session. :)
aw. loving seeing my name in the beautiful stack of cards :)
It’s a pleasure to send mail to you, Dave. :) Loved seeing you IN PERSON a couple weeks ago! Such a huge gift.
Just returned to New Orleans on NYE and received such a beautiful, calligraphied note card from you! Treasuring it now. Thank you for shedding your cheer!
Wonderful! I love sending cards to friends like you who get joy out of them. Missing you and New Orleans, go and dance to some jazz for us!