[Guest Post] Quick & Easy MailArt

Today’s guest blogger is LetterMo Community Member Nina, the MailArt Maven at Ink Quills and Spills™. She spends most of her time trying to stay out of creative trouble.

Mail Art Belly Bands head

Happy LetterMo everyone! Thank you Mary and Tempest for extending the invitation to contribute to the LetterMo Blog. As a creative person I have always subscribed to the belief that anyone can create. Yes, for some it’s a forté, but it doesn’t discount my belief. The levels may differ but you too can create something for your penpals during this 2016 challenge. (They will appreciate this little extra something.)

It’s Easy, Budget Friendly, and QUICK!

And to prove it I’d like to introduce…. wait for it… on its way…. the BELLY BAND! It is truly the easiest thing ever. In fact, I don’t even have a long drawn out step-by-step for you because this just doesn’t need it. You will be able to make your own after viewing the sample Belly Bands I’ve made for you below.

Belly Bands can be as simple or as Complex as you desire. You control the simplicity, budget and time.

The most basic of supplies are:

  • Solid colored paper
  • Straight edge
  • Scissors
  • Glue

More involved Bands may call for:

  • Stickers
  • Patterned paper
  • Rubber stamps/Ink
  • Edging scissors
  • Washi tape
  • Wax and wax seal

Approximate size to make your bands:
(Guide to get started. All at your discretion)

  • Full-sheet letters folded in thirds
    • Belly band HEIGHT: Same as your unfolded letter
    • Belly band WIDTH: 6″ max

Full-sheet letters folded in thirds

  • Half-sheet letters folded in thirds
    • Belly band HEIGHT: Same as your unfolded letter
    • Belly band WIDTH: 4″ max

Half-sheet letters folded in thirds


These belly bands use just one layer of paper




These belly bands use two or more layers of paper




In conclusion…

The choices are truly endless! You are in control. I will say this: Belly Bands are a stupendous way of using papers, stickers and supplies that you can’t seem to utilize. See, you don’t have to be able to draw a straight line. Oh by the way, Belly Bands also offer “privacy”. If you write on both sides of your letters and can see the text through the envelope, the belly band helps conceal the contents of your correspondence.

And for those of you whom drawing may be a forté, Belly Bands are a perfect canvas! Especially if you have concerns about envelope delivery with elaborate design. Keep Scribbling!

BellyBand Henna

22 thoughts on “[Wayback Repost] Why do letters seem more daunting than email?”

  1. Having been a letter writer for several years now, I don’t particularly find this challenge all that difficult, other than remembering to do it every day instead of when the whim takes me to write. And since I may not have a penpal’s letter to answer, then I need to think outside my normal circle of penpals and write to others. I saw this as an opportunity to reconnect with a few old penpals that had lapsed, family members that live outside of the city, friends I haven’t seen in a while, and strangers or persons of stature. I think it’s a great challenge and maybe it will even boost the joy of those who process all this mail and deliver it to us. 🙂

  2. I love your post. And I totally agree.

    Email, tweets n twitters, FB comments all have their place and moment in time where they are the appropriate way to respond.

    However, sending a letter, postcard, or notecard is the only way to connect with someone on a more personal, even intimate, level.

    The act of sending a missive does take time, but more importantly it takes thought. What paper will I use? What will I add (stickers, washi, etc.)? What will I say? Combined these choices will be a bright spot in someone’s day. Added bonus? It was created specifically for them.

  3. Great article on postcard apps but you should also take a look at Postsnap’s easy to use postcard app.
    The app offers a number of unique features compared to the other apps reviewed including:
    – Guest checkout with Apple Pay
    – Extensive personalization options including collage layouts, stylish borders which can be adjusted in size with a slider and the option to add editable text in a variety of font types and colors and position it anywhere on the cards
    – iPhone and iPad support
    – Apple Pencil support
    – Facebook and Instagram integration
    – US postal address verification and UK postcode lookup
    Cards are printed and posted in our facilities in the UK, USA and Australia on the same or next working day and so cards typically arrive quickly. Enjoy!
    Stephen Homer

  4. I have been writing letters for several years now. My go to paper is Rhodia Premium or Rhodia Ice pads. I also Life pads too. I like them because they are not quite as slick as the Rhodia.

  5. I too love journals to pull apart for writing. For me the most important aspect of the paper is the pattern. I love to have some colour and some design on the paper. I’ve managed to find a number of nice colours and designs at one of my local “Home Sense” discount stores in the book section. Most of the small journals are a perfect size to fit in the envelopes I use. If not I just give one edge a bit of a trim (but sometimes I really like the ripped edge look too!) ;P

  6. Hi, Christmas cards & more recently a letter (a bill) from the UK to Australia have taken 3 weeks to arrive. The exterior of these envelopes were stamped with a mark such as this from the latest envelope:
    DLC 992-4
    The example quoted arrived at the Australian address on 28/07/2017, unfortunately it contained a bill dated 06/07/2017 which had to be paid within 14 days, by 20/07/2017.
    Why is the post so slow? What does the DLC 992-4 stamp signify? Would appreciate your feedback.

  7. My letter that I wrote was in September. The person who it was for still hasn’t gotten it and it’s now November….
    I don’t understand why it’s taking this long. I live in AZ and he lives in NY. I want answers.

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