Last year Michelle Mackintosh put a callout on Instagram asking for people to decorate an envelope and send it to her specially set up PO Box. It was called the #PObox26 project and if you look up the hashtag on Instagram you will see some of the crafty submissions which were sent in from all over the world.
I knew from the outset that ‘Snail Mail‘ would be a book that I wanted to own – being an enthusiast of snail mail and stationery it was definitely a topic of great interest. I submitted one envelope from me personally and one from Unleash Creative for the project.
‘Rediscovering the art and craft of handmade correspondence’ is the synopsis of the book and it does nothing short of delivering on this promise; and more.
I honestly expected the book to just be full of people’s decorated envelopes, but it is so much more than that and the envelopes from the #POBox26 project only form a fraction of the books’ 226 solid pages. The book takes you on a mindful journey into analogue mail, it’s significance into your emotional well being, what impact it has on both the writer and recipient and the power it has to unburden you, convey feelings of love and appreciation.
Not to mention the fact that when any of us receive a real letter (not a bill) in our mail box, the general warm-fuzzies feeling associated with a friend or loved one taking the time to write is heart-filling. In a society which is quickly overcome with the trappings of a digital era and time-poor people yearning for more hours in the day, a letter, even if just a note to say “I’m thinking about you” is a real treat and an honour to receive.
‘The Lost Art of Manners’ is a section of the book I think EVERYONE in today’s society should be forced to read. It should be mandatory alongside filing taxes. When I watch period shows such as ‘Downton Abbey‘ or ‘Boardwalk Empire‘ my heart longs for a time when everything was simpler, people were eloquent and conversations weren’t full of “umm”, “it’s like, you know like”, “youse guys”, “OMG” and “totes”. When conversations were full of witty extended banter with hidden implied undertones very much out in the open. Why don’t we converse like that anymore? Because we are time poor. And lazy. It’s a real tragedy in my opinion (or “IMO” if you love to shorten the heck outta everything”).
‘Snail Mail’ also covers how to construct different types of letters such as thank you’s, apologies, condolences, reconciliations and a letter of congratulations just to name a few.
There’s some incredible correspondence between well-known people included in the book. Robert Browning‘s (a Poet of the 1800’s) letter to his future wife is absolute magic and a real privilege to read the words which were penned in such thoughtfulness and meaning so many decades ago.
Once you get past the formalities of how to construct letters, why and when you should write one and the etiquette associated with sending and receiving a letter, Michelle gets down to the fun stuff. The book then gets into how to make your own stationery including different methods for decorating envelopes, hand-lettering, templates for constructing your own envelopes. There are plenty of examples of creative envelopes and the many treasures which you can stuff into their papery walls to make the intended recipient feel loved.
And did I mention that the book edges cleverly resemble the iconic blue and white striped envelopes of the past!? So much thought, care and complete cleverness has gone into creating ‘Snail Mail‘. Michelle is one clever and super talented lady.
We’ve got two neato prize packs up for grabs thanks to the folks at Hardie Grant Books. Each prize pack consists of:
If you don’t want to take your chances or simply can’t wait any longer, you can get your mitts on a copy of Snail Mail by Michelle Mackintosh, published by Hardie Grant Books RRP $29.95 HERE