This February, I participated in an international Handmade Valentine Exchange facilitated by Julia Parris. I signed up and received 10 names and addresses. The criteria was that the the cards had to be handmade and positive. I love mail and making my own cards so I was really excited to participate. I made a hand drawn pattern called Heart & Coin and printed it out on linen paper. Then, using my handy dandy typewriter, and a little help from my friends, I typed out love themed messages for the front.
After the cards were created, I made envelopes with the Heart & Coin pattern printed on both sides. The envelopes turned out flimsier than I thought they would be and I hope that they made it through the journey across the country. I didn't have any Valentines in other countries ( I was hoping to get some foreign stamps) but I did get to write to people from New York, Texas, Illinois, West Virginia and Georgia to name a few.
As a printmaker, is was a little sad for me to have to print out my cards using a cheap inkjet printer. I think these cards would have looked great as a silkscreen. Slowly, I will amass printing equipment for my studio to let my process evolve. The paper I chose for this project did create a nice layering effect, allowing the message on the back to creep through the front. It was thin yet fibrous enough for the typewriter to leave an indentation.