I don’t care what people think, but I love sending (and receiving) cards. As somebody who spends most of their time in a very digital world I really appreciate physical letters and cards from time to time. Don’t get me wrong, I really don’t want people to start sending me letters all the time when an email would suffice, but an actual card or letter is refreshing. When I was a teenager and even through my early 20s letters and cards were far more common. Nowadays most of the physical post I get personally or professionally is related to some form of bureaucracy or other. It’s rare that I get correspondence that’s personal via the postman.
However I have been trying in my own little way to keep a part of the card sending tradition alive. Every year I send out an increasing number of Christmas cards to friends both at home and abroad. I’ll be starting this year’s batch in the next couple of days.
Over the past couple of years I’ve been tweaking how I do things a little.
To start with there’s the cards themselves. I’ve written about cards a few times in the past. I like the cards to be a little on the quirky side. You’re unlikely to get one of the more pedestrian cards from me. I have a small collection of old Far Side cards that I send out from every year. As they’re no longer being made that will eventually have to stop, as I’ll simply run out. I’ve also been buying cards from a number of Irish sources.
A couple of years back I got some nice custom rubber stamps made so pretty much all my physical mail gets a stamp with my return address on it. For the Christmas season I swap that stamp out for a more seasonal version.
This year, however, I’m upping my game a little. I’ve acquired a brass seal and will be trying to use wax seals with a seasonal greeting.
I’ve been doing some test runs today and I think it should work fairly well, though I suspect I won’t have enough wax for the number of cards I’m planning on sending.
Shout out of big thanks to Reg who explained to me what kind of wax I needed and why!
Sealing wax comes in a number of different ways. You can get it as sticks or beads. You can also get “hard” and quite brittle wax or a more flexible and supple one. Getting the more supple wax proved to be a little awkward as most sites selling it were either in the US or the UK. In the end I found a French crowd whose shipping rates weren’t horrendous and got it from them. But I’ve also got a bunch of the more brittle style wax to use up as well.
So if you get a card from me this year hopefully the envelope will have a little wax seal! Now if only my handwriting were a bit better …