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GUEST POST: How to Get More Real Mail Through Your Letterbox

While I take my "maternity leave" (no, I've not had the baby yet), some of my favourite bloggers will be taking the reins here at Sarah Rooftops. 

First up is Janet from Words That Can Only Be Your Own, writing about how to get something more exciting than Iceland offers through your door.




Janet's desk: writing postcards


I've always loved both sending and receiving mail but in this day and age, it's become depressingly common for the daily post delivery to include little more than marketing flyers for pizza delivery places, perhaps with a bill or two mixed in. So, a couple of years ago, I made the decision to ensure that, at least once a week, I had something exciting arriving in the mail. And this is how I did it...


Take part in a swap

There are tons of swaps going on at any one time, some focused on a particular subject or theme and some more general. There are so many out there in blogland that I couldn't possibly name them all, but a few I've taken part in and enjoyed include Char's regular gift swaps, Gemma's Blogger's Snail Mail project, and Hannah's craft swaps.

Don't see a swap that appeals? Start your own! I've now run three thrifty Christmas swaps plus a postal clothes swap, and I'm always pleasantly surprised by how simple they are to get organised. Plus you get the satisfaction of knowing that something you've put together has brought cheer to letterboxes up and down the country.


Start a mixtape club

Or, to be more accurate, a mix CD club. You can run a CD club with any number of participants, but 12 makes the organisation simpler: each month of the year is allocated to a member and when your turn comes around, you put together a mix CD, make eleven copies, and post them out. The club I'm a member of is run through a private Facebook group, which makes exchanging reviews of each other's CDs, picking up addresses, etc, really easy.

In the year-and-a-bit I've been a member, I've had mix CDs on themes as diverese as Nordic music, one hit wonders, music by bands containing couples, songs about books and reading... the list goes on. If you like music and can muster a like-minded group, give it a go.


Subscribe to your favourite magazine(s)

Subscription is an ace way to support small, independent publications especially, with a much larger proportion of subscription money making its way directly to the publisher than when you buy a magazine instore. I subscribe to US feminist mags Bust and Bitch as well as Oh Comely from the UK, giving me the excitement of each new issue landing on my doormat, often a few days before it's released into the shops.


#PostCircle

I joined #PostCircle a little over a year ago and it's brought innumerable joys to my life and my letterbox. Essentially a penpal project, with over 400 members worldwide, when you join you're allocated to a group with whom you then exchange letters, cards... anything you wish. My 'Circle', Monkjack, has three active members and I absolutely love receiving my small parcels from Gill and Debbie filled with exciting bits and pieces and long, chatty letters full of their lives. #PostCircle is a great way to meet people who you would otherwise never cross paths with


Surprise a friend

I'm a big fan of using snail mail to keep in touch with friends both near and far. Whether it's a well-chosen postcard to your bestie down the road, or a small care package to a far-away mate you haven't seen for months, surprising your friends is a great way to brighten their day and be almost guaranteed a little something in return.


Box subscription services

If you feel like treating yourself, why not sign up to one of the many postal subscription services now available? From beauty boxes like industry leader Birchbox, to foodie ones such as the Vegan Tuck Box, to bookish delights from the Willoughby Book Club or Bookishly, there really is something for everyone. Personally, I'm rather tempted by London illustrator Ella Masters' new Big Pop Club, which is one for lovers of tattoo design and hand-drawn art.

8 comments

  1. Thanks for having me! I'm so dozy, saw this on Bloglovin and went, "Cool, I have a desk like that... and a jug... and that looks like my embroidery.... OH!"

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  2. Ha ha! Did you think you'd found your decorating soul mate?


    Thanks for taking part!

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  3. Some great ideas, thanks! I love getting "real" mail. I'm particularly intrigued by the mix c.d. club, how would one find one if you don't already belong? I really should subscribe to magazines as well, I'm sure I spend far more buying them at newsstands!

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  4. This question's for you, @jbsitheinitial. :-)

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  5. Ooh, good question Steff. I'm not sure. I was invited to join mine by a friend on Facebook - I suspect that it might be easiest to put the word out via social media and try and set one up yourself. They don't take any effort to run (apart from occasional reminder messages on our FB group when a CD doesn't arrive on time).

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  6. Ooh, good question Steff. I'm not sure. I was invited to join mine by a friend on Facebook - I suspect that it might be easiest to put the word out via social media and try and set one up yourself. They don't take any effort to run (apart from occasional reminder messages on our FB group when a CD doesn't arrive on time). I'd definitely consider doing a CD club via Twitter next year - the one I'm in has a lot of middle aged men who tend to all worship at the altar of 60s and 70s white boy rock!

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