Recently I sent my friend Kijjit a Blue Book. Remember these?
I wrote on one side of the pages and glued fun things onto the other sides.
This hilarious ad came from the pamphlet I received at the American Craft Beer Fest which took place June 3rd & 4th in Boston this year.
A just having fun collage:
The caption on this photo I borrowed from my boyfriend. He thinks (and I agree) that crocodiles and alligators always look extremely pleased with themselves, even in zoos... They look as if everything is going just the way they want it- according to some sneaky plan of theirs.
And here is the back of the book. I closed it with strips of stamp selvage around the edges (not shown in this photo) and then sent it as is.
Anyway, besides being a letter, the "subject" - see first photo - is kind of accurate.
Kevin recently followed his dreams to San Diego and has been inspired by me to keep in touch with family and friends from the East Coast through letters. Yay! Another convert!
So, I gave him some pointers on mail...
And I guess I'll give them here too in case anyone is interested. Nothing new to seasoned campaigners I'm sure.
First off, for my American readers, the USPS website is a wonderful resource.
Especially their postage calculator.
If you have a small scale and can weigh your packages at home, this postage calculator can tell you how much postage you need. I bought a scale meant for food from the grocery store for about 4$. It's a good investment if you mail a lot, especially things larger than normal letters.
The postage calculator will also tell you the size limitations on letters, postcards, large envelopes etc. Just click on the question marks. If your postcard etc. is larger than the limitations it is pushed up to the next bracket and you need to add additional postage.
There are also rules about non-machinable letters that you will be shown on the next page of the postage calculator.
Kevin also goes by Kijjit the Fox, see his blog here, so I let him know that if he wants to get mail under that name or another pseudonym he needs to notify his postal worker.
Back to USPS, as you see from one of the pages above, I'm rather against boring stamps (read Liberty Bell and American Flag). My feeling is that there are so many awesome stamps out there that you should use instead! If your local post office is difficult to get to or does not have a good variety of stamps available, remember you can order them online from usps.com.
So most of the advice I gave was about the logistics of frequent mailing, but I also encouraged my friend to look for free stuff to use as part of his mail art. If there is a university near where you live they probably have some sort of free publication that they put out. Sometimes you can find really wonderful images in them. Also, look on the ground! Litter can be a fun addition to mail art if it's not too dirty. Tons of scratch off lottery tickets get littered around my neighborhood. You can acquire some fun material and clean up your neighborhood at the same time!
I hope I didn't bore you too much.