Swap-bot Time: August 12, 2020 6:25 am

Make Me a Mail Art Kit!

Launch gallery slideshow

Make Me a Mail Art Kit!
Group:Zines, mail art & other cool stuff
Swap Coordinator:TangleCrafts (contact)
Swap categories: Zines  Craft Supplies  Mail Art 
Number of people in swap:10
Type:Type 3: Package or craft
Last day to signup/drop:November 2, 2009
Date items must be sent by:November 30, 2009
Number of swap partners:2

I have just (finally!) received my copy of 'Good Mail Day' by Jennie Hinchcliff & Carolee Gilligan Wheeler (pic above borrowed from book). I've not even finished reading it yet, but Chapter 3 has inspired me to create this swap!

Chapter 3 is called 'The Traveling Mail Art Kit', and as the title suggests it is simply about creating a portable pack of mail art essentials, so that you are prepared, whenever and wherever inspiration strikes. I know what I would put in my own mail art kit, but as mail art is such a personal thing & everyone expresses it differently, I thought it would be interesting to see what our partners consider the essentials of mail art.

So you will send each of your partners the following:

  1. A container for your kit: this could be a rigid envelope, large matchbox, or zippered pouch – maybe even a re-purposed pencil case or make-up bag. The important requirements are that it is portable, so it should be no bigger than A5 (half letter-size), and be substantial enough not to fall apart after being carried about for a few days!

  2. 5 small items that you consider essential to successful mail art (see list below for ideas from the book, but feel free to use your own ideas instead of or as well). Please make at least 1 of the 5 items a higher effort item - e.g. a set of personalised address labels, a hand-carved stamp, a couple of handmade postcards etc. & please make sure that all of the items fit (simultaneously!) inside the container you have chosen.

  3. A small leaflet/booklet/mini-zine explaining the essential nature of the kit you have put together (e.g. how to use the enclosed items, & why they are essential).

Here are the 'suggested items for a well-stocked mail art kit', as listed in the aforementioned book:

  • A black, blue or red permanent (/smudgeproof) pen for addressing envelopes
  • A coloured pen for decoration
  • Double-sided tape
  • Short snub-nosed scissors for children [not so sure about this myself – I had a pair of nail scissors confiscated at an airport once]
  • A small glue stick
  • A mini-stapler
  • Blank labels, plain or fancy
  • A booklet of stamps [not especially useful to overseas partners, so maybe some used stamps to re-craft, or some faux stamps for decoration, instead?]
  • A few blank postcards
  • A small address book
  • A crayon for making rubbings [umm, okay]
  • Some mail art awaiting reply
  • A hand-carved personal seal/stamp
  • An office date stamp
  • Small ink pad

I have to say my own essential kit would definitely include some different items than are featured here, so please don't be afraid to make any substitutions! (Other ideas include but aren't limited to: personalised address labels, airmail labels, envelope seals, envelope glue, postage stamp edge scissors or punch, etc etc)

2 partners = 2 kits sent & 2 kits received

The mailing date is end of November so that hopefully packages will arrive before Christmas! :-)

This is a group swap for members of Zines, mail art & other cool stuff. I've checked people's ratings as they've joined the group, but I will check through again before partners are assigned, to do my best to avoid disappointment in this swap. Please only sign up if you have both the time & inclination to complete this swap!


DangerousMoustache 10/ 5/2009 #

yet again another AMAZING SWAP!!!!!!! def watching

TangleCrafts 10/ 6/2009 #

I'm really looking forward to putting my kits together :-) . Hope you join!

secretterrabite 10/ 7/2009 #

Glad you got the book at last, excellent idea for a swap. Will sign up if I get the time and money!

TangleCrafts 10/ 8/2009 #

Yes, I was jealous that you ha the book months before me! ;-) Hope you'll be able to play. :)

FarStarr 10/14/2009 #

The book is great! ...and did you see that Carroll from here on swap-bot is in it??? She also went to the booksigning last week. Too cool!

TangleCrafts 10/15/2009 #

Ooh no - I've still not actually had time to finish reading the book! I will look out for her when I get back to it (maybe add some of her faux postage to the relevant page/s!).

CARROLL 10/15/2009 #

That's me on page 119! I met some of the other mailartists featured in the book, and had a fun time at the book launch party. The Ladies of Pod Post signed my copy of the book ( which is getting dog-eared from over-use ). Check out their blog to see the tag back to this swap!


TangleCrafts 10/16/2009 #

That's so cool, @Carroll - I love the Danish grammar postcard! And thanks for getting us mentioned on their blog - how exciting for you to be involved with a great book like this one! :-)

secretterrabite 10/24/2009 #

There's an english book you should look up "Mail Me Art" by Darren Di Lieto (it's on Amazon and at the Book Depository). It's a project an artist local to me did, getting artists and designers all over the world to send him gorgeous decorated envelopes. They are all stunning and very inspiring.

TangleCrafts 10/24/2009 #

Or go a step further, and contribute to the next volume of Mail Me Art yourself ;-)

CARROLL 10/24/2009 #

Su, I just had a thought. I'm planning on using the one of the kits I get as a gift to some unsuspecting person, who doesn't know about mailart yet. If I'm feeling extra generous, I might get another copy of Good Mail Day to REALLY show them what fun mailart is!

( I've heard Amazon will have copies from the second printing available soon! )

TangleCrafts 10/25/2009 #

That's a great idea! :-) I'm really looking forward to putting my kit together, & seeing what everyone else comes up with.

LiveTheChaos 10/26/2009 #

My kits are done except for the little booklet thing. So much fun!!!!

ArtyBeth3 10/29/2009 #

Hi everyone, I just joined the group and of course, had to run right to Amazon to purchase the Mail Art book (smile). I'm looking forward to creating my kits and seeing what others create for me.

TangleCrafts 10/29/2009 #

Picked up some 'essential' supplies today, and my zine is half-written. I'm really enjoying this swap, already! :-)

TAnn 11/ 1/2009 #

Just ordered the book too. Never done mail art and still procrastinating about doing my first zine

TangleCrafts 11/ 1/2009 #

Go fo it! The best thing about both zines and mail art is that there are no rules :-)

LiveTheChaos 11/ 2/2009 #

Aaaaah! Hurry and assign the partners already! Hee hee

CARROLL 11/ 2/2009 #

OK..I've packed up the two mailart kit. I've complete the zine ( my first zine ever! ) And, I've documented everything...I guess I'm ready!

FarStarr 11/ 3/2009 #

Wow, Carroll!! You're fast! I've been dragging my feet and just making lists until partners were assigned...Now I can start working!

LiveTheChaos 11/ 3/2009 #

I'm sending my kits out today. Can't wait to get mine!

TAnn 11/ 7/2009 #

Woohoo. I got the book, and i have read it from cover to cover. Its fab

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