Sunday, December 30, 2018

Heart-Shaped Valentines Swap - Postmark by Tuesday, January 22nd UPDATED

Stickers over Gelli Plate printed background
February will swiftly follow on the heels of January, and with it- Valentines' Day.  For this exchange we will make four (4) Valentines in the shape of a "heart."  

The pieces you create may have art/design on both sides, but please also include your contact information so that your delighted recipient may acknowledge your art.
(These simple examples were made last year but not for a Valentines' Day swap.) 

Participants, please include a return envelope that is already addressed to you, and enclose two forever stamps to cover the cost of mailing thick or thin art. 
Your swap host hopes to sort your Valentines within 2 weeks of the Send-In date in order to distribute your art in time for Valentines' Day.

SIZE:  no larger than 3" x 5" each
THEME:  Valentines' Day
MATERIALS/MEDIA:  paint, pencils, crayons, stickers, Washi tape, rubber stamps, lace, ribbon, tissue paper, etc.
QUANTITY:  4

ENCLOSURES: 
your art
postage
self-labeled return envelope


SEND IN NO LATER THAN JANUARY 22nd.
MAIL TO:
Honi C.
Post Office Box 142
Freedom, NY  14065
USA

QUESTIONS:  s.h.greenstamps@juno.com

  • Send four Valentines.  (You will get four Valentines back, one from four different artists)
  • Include a long business envelope or large greeting card envelope, self-addressed to you.  Your swap host will use this to mail your return Valentine hearts.  Also, put your own address in the upper left hand corner..
  • Consider using waxed paper, parchment or cellophane between the hearts so they don't get stuck together in the envelope, especially if you use glue, paint or sealant
  • Write your contact information on the back of each heart you send in.  An email address legibly written would make it easier for your recipient to thank you.  

  • ALSO, PLEASE ENCLOSE TWO FOREVER STAMPS FOR YOUR ENVELOPE
INTERNATIONAL SWAPPERS - contact the swap host regarding using PayPal to cover return mailing postage, or make other arrangements.  
You can find all the postal specifications (and a handy postage calculator) here:  http://postcalc.usps.gov


Thursday, December 27, 2018

Monday, December 24, 2018

Holiday Greetings!



I hope your holidays will be
joyful and bright,
and the year ahead will be
filled with art and friendship!
Honi


Sunday, December 23, 2018

Decorated Envelopes Swap - Postmark by Monday, January 28th - UPDATED

Stencils, rubber stamps
It has been more than a year since we had a decorated envelope swap. 

This time we will be starting with already-made envelopes instead of constructing them from scratch.  


Here's a link to a very entertaining and enlightening article about making and sending deliverable mail art envelopes:

https://thepostmansknock.com/how-to-make-deliverable-mail-art/
Rubber stamp images embossed over acrylic paint  








SIZE:  Medium-to-large greeting card envelopes are very useful, also1/4-note envelopes.  

I recommend an upper limit of no larger than 8+1/2" x 5+1/2" so they don't have to be folded when I send them to your swap partners.  






Large sticker over Gelli Plate printed Deli Wrap Paper



Techniques and media for decorating your envelopes might include paints, markers, sketching, stencil work, rubber stamping, embossing, Washi tape, collage, stickers, etc. 

Any theme, any media that will go safely through the mail when your swap partners use them.


Rubber stamped images embossed




Decorate 1 - 4 envelopes.  If you write your name on the inside of the flap, or enclose a little note with your email address, your swap partner will be able to thank you.



Stickers over Gelli Plate/stencil work on Deli Wrap paper
Please include one 9" x 6" envelope (brown Kraft flapped envelopes work well) with your return address and your own send-to address on the envelope so I can mail your swapped art back to you.  A nonmachinable (70-cents as of January 27th) stamp or equivalent postage should cover it. 








Send in your decorated envelopes,
separated by waxed paper or cellophane if
there's reason they might stick together...
Enclose with your self-labeled return envelope 
and postage in a cover envelope and 
get it into the mail no later than 
Monday, January 28th
SEND TO:
Honi C.  
Post Office Box 142
Freedom, New York State  14065  
USA

SWAPPING GUIDELINES:
  • You may send in as many as four envelopes to be swapped by the swap host.  (You will receive the same number you send, each from a different artist).
  • Send your envelopes to the swap host, who will exchange them with envelopes sent in by other swappers and then send your to you in the envelope you provide.  
  • If you're sending more than one, please insert waxed paper, parchment or cellophane between the envelopes so they don't get stuck together in the envelope, especially if you use glue, paint or sealant.

  • INTERNATIONAL SWAPPERS - contact the swap host regarding using PayPal to cover return mailing postage, or make other arrangements.
You can find all the postal specifications (and a handy postage calculator) here:  http://postcalc.usps.gov

Thursday, December 20, 2018

USA Postal Rate Increase 2019


Just an informational note to let everyone know:  the Postal Service plans to increase First Class rates on January 27th, 2019.  

  • Forever stamps will soon be 55-cents each instead of 50-cents.  If you stock up on Forever stamps before the increase, you will be 5-cents ahead for each stamp you buy, until your Forever stamps run out and you have to buy more at the increased cost.  
  • The First Class extra ounce stamps will cost 15-cents each instead of 21 cents, which means that every stamp with Uncle Sam hats on it will lose 6-cents value when the rates change.  (I'm using them up quickly to avoid the loss of value.)

The good news:  Post Card rates (35-cents) and International Mail rates (starting at $1.15 for the first ounce) will remain the same as they have been in 2018.
Nonmachinable rates will be 70-cents instead of 71-cents each.

Product
Letters (1 oz.)
Letters additional ounces
Letters (metered 1 oz.)
Outbound International Letters (1 oz.)
Domestic Postcards  
Current          
50 cents
21 cents
47 cents
$1.15
35 cents
Proposed
55 cents
15 cents
50 cents
$1.15
35 cents

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Calendar Bits #2 Collage Post Card Swap - Postmark by January 14th

WAIT!  Before you throw out your 2019 calendar pages, save some pieces from various calendars for this swap.

Here's a repeat of a fun re-purposing exchange we had last year.  The directions are similar, except for one catch.  Read on! 




Make 1 - 4 post cards on which you incorporate pieces of calendars.  

Be sure to show some numbers/days/ months/
words, but not the picture parts.

The calendar elements (torn, cut, punched-out, strips, folded) should be obvious, not hidden, a noticeable part of your whole design, but you may add other media as well.  Start with any background.  

HERE'S THE CATCH:
You must include 
*1 circle shape, and
*1 square shape, and
*1 triangle shape 
on each card you make.
Circles, squares, OOPS! No triangles!  (Last year's swap)
You may accent with ink, paint, rubber stamping, stenciling, writing...  Just be sure the pieces of calendar are recognizable, not completely painted over or obscured by other images.
Summary
THEME:  Calendar elements
MEDIA:  paper, etc.
TECHNIQUE: collage, etc.
SIZE PARAMETERS:  
6" x 4+1/4"

CHECKLIST:
  • AS MANY SELF-ADDRESS LABELS AS PIECES YOU EXPECT TO RECEIVE BACK
  • SUFFICIENT POSTAGE FOR EACH PIECE YOU SEND IN
  • RECOMMENDED:  WAXED PAPER, PARCHMENT OR CELLOPHANE BETWEEN EACH PIECE
  • YOUR RETURN ADDRESS ON EACH PIECE YOU SEND IN
  • WRITE "MMSA - CALENDAR " on the side you write on anyway, not the on art side
*****ART LARGER THAN POST CARD SIZE LIMITS WILL REQUIRE AT LEAST 50-CENTS LETTER RATE POSTAGE.*****

*****ART THICKER THAN SEVERAL LAYERS OF INDEX CARD, ART TOO STIFF TO BEND EASILY, DELICATE COLLAGE, DESIGNS WITH ART EXTENDING OVER THE EDGES, POST CARDS ENCASED IN CELLOPHANE SLEEVES, WILL REQUIRE AT LEAST 71-cents  "NON-MACHINABLE" POSTAGE***** 

Put your card(s) in an envelope and 
get into the mail no later than 
Monday, January 14th
Honi C.
Post Office Box 142
Freedom, New York State  14065  
USA

QUESTIONS?  s.h.greenstamps@juno.com

SAMPLE TEMPLATE FOR BACK OF MAIL 
ART SWAP POST CARD:


SWAPPING GUIDELINES:
  • You may send in as many as four cards unless specified by the swap host.  (You will get back the same number you send, each from a different artist).
  • Your cards will be mailed to your host in an envelope, and your host will mail them as-is to other swappers.  International swappers may request to have them all mailed together in one envelope.
  • If you're sending more than one, please insert waxed paper, parchment or cellophane between the cards so they don't get stuck together in the envelope, especially if you use glue, paint or sealant.
  • Write “MMSA -  CALENDAR" on the back of each card and attach your return address in the UPPER LEFT HAND CORNER in case of postal delivery problems.  Including an email address legibly written would make it easier for your recipient to thank you.
  • LEAVE SPACE FOR THE "ADDRESS TO" LABELS PARTICIPANTS SEND IN FOR YOUR SWAP HOST TO ATTACH
  • Include a mailing label with your name and address for each card you expect to receive back.
    (Your host will attach them to the swapped cards she mails to you)
  •  Please include the proper postage in the envelope or adhere stamps to your postcards (see below for postal guidelines)
  • Postcards made from thicker cardboard (therefore stiff/not easily bendable)  will need nonmachinable postage.  Thank you.
POSTAGE AND CARD SIZE
  • In order to use the postcard rate ($.35) your card cannot be bigger than 6"
     x  4+1/4", and it must be thin and flexible.  A card that is larger, thick, lumpy or doesn't bend, will require more postage. 
  • If your card is an unusual shape (square, round) or is flexible but has some lumpy embellishments it will probably cost you the "nonmachinable" rate of $.71
  • If your card is very thick,  heavy and doesn't bend at all, the post office may consider it a package and you should get it weighed and measured to figure out the proper postage.
INTERNATIONAL SWAPPERS - contact the swap host regarding using PayPal to cover return mailing postage, or make other arrangements.

You can find all the postal specifications (and a handy postage calculator) here:  http://postcalc.usps.gov