I do enjoy #BringBackPaper. It means that every Wednesday I get to indulge my love of paper here, but even more than that, I’m amazed by how it connects people. It seems that there a lot of people out there who also like their paper, be it stationery, books, colouring, scrap-booking, or as I’m going to focus on today, snail mailing. It’s definitely coming back, and for those of you yearning to put pen to paper again and keep in touch the old-fashioned way, may I point you in the direction of #PostCircle, and do pop by here regularly as I do run swaps and pen pal pairings, too, from time to time.
So today I’m thinking about happy mail, and in particular, mail tags. Do you know what a mail tag is? It’s a lovely idea which I believe originated from Bianca Jagoe, and is a simple and enjoyable way to get to know one another. You write a few questions or prompts down for your pen pal to respond to, and then they reply with the answers along with a mail tag of their own if they choose to.
If you write letters, they are a really fun way of getting to know one another, and just opening up about different things through your correspondence. They are also a quirky and nice little addition and insert to a letter. Alternatively, if you’ve little time to send a whole letter, a brief note and a mail tag is a nice way to stay in touch.
A mail tag can be typed, stamped, written, whatever! You can add it on a bit of extra paper, use a postcard or gift tag, or as I’ve done with these examples, use various bits of paper and card, prettied up with bright colours , washi tape and stampers. A lot of the fun is in the creating, so grab yourself some papery supplies…
I have a fair few things to choose from here! Those stamper pens are fun, from Ikea, the kids like those, too. The pretty craft paper is from the Eccentric Fox, and there are loads more designs than pictured here. Everything else is from Paperchase. That scissors set is fun, great for making things a little more interesting when you’re cutting and shaping, and my daughter likes using them, too. The stamper set I bought just the other day as it is so sweet! A nice easy way of dressing up a tag or envelope. The felt tips I bought for my colouring book, and I’m impressed by the range of colours – there are 70 in the tub I bought! And the washi, well, everyone needs a whole load of washi in their lives, don’t they?! So versatile and very handy for decorating the tags.
So armed with my supplies, I designed a few different tags, and even made use of a cardboard box I was just about to bin. Once you have a pretty little tag ready, you just need a few questions and prompts…
Here are a few ideas of what you might try, around a few different themes, though of course they can be completely random, too:
Childhood: What did you want to grow up to be? Favourite toy? Favourite childhood place? Happiest childhood memory?
Books: What are you reading now? Who is your favourite author? Top 3 books? Best book you’ve read this year?
Hopes and Dreams: What would you do with a lottery win? What would your dream day out be? If you could have 3 wishes, what would they be?
Yum: Favourite dessert? Savoury or sweet? Perfect date night meal? Favourite type of food?
Around the World: Favourite place you’ve visited? Dream holiday destination? If you could live anywhere in the world…
Films: Favourite genre? Last film you saw at the cinema? Favourite actor? If you could watch a film right now, it’d be…
Makes Me Smile: Favourite flower? Happiest when? A film that makes you smile? Favourite season? Songs to singalong to?
TV: What do you look forward to watching each week at the moment? All-time favourite shows? Boxset/series recommendations? Favourite TV programme to snuggle down to?
Hobbies: What do you do to relax? Favourite sport? How do you get creative? Paper Books or Kindle?
Home: Which is your favourite room in your home and why? How long have you lived there? Gardening: a chore or a pleasure? Favourite item in your home?
So you see, a mail tag is all about curiosity and getting to know people better. Ask whatever you want, and make the tag as colourful and as pretty as you fancy. Enjoy!
What do you think? Do you use mail tags when you write?
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