Monday, April 23, 2012

The Elevated Envelope

I am a bit of a sucker for art swaps. Who doesn't like good mail? And art in the mail - sending and receiving - is wonderful fun. So when I heard about The Elevated Envelope via the Letter Writers Alliance, I had to go check it out. Another swap was coming up in May. 

The Creativity Queue Challenge has got me thinking about instances where I can combine interests in one project. I wanted to add this swap to my queue, but if I did, could I use it as a chance to experiment with a technique already in the queue?  So here is what I did for my envelopes. 

Continuing to experiment with the paper-cloth process, I cut my envelope shapes from a thicker muslin fabric. 

Then cut pieces of freezer paper larger than each envelope. 

 I gathered the bits of papers I wanted to use to give the envelopes a vintage, correspondence feel. (And hey, if you collage in classic literature, that's elevated, right?)

Get your glue ready to go. 

Now proceed with meditative collage mode accompanied with your favorite music, TV or movie. 

During the gluing process I added in the return and mailing addresses on some of the envelopes. 

After the overnight drying time, which my drying rack really helps with, it's time to stitch and collage the next layer.

The leather-like fabric is then folded up for gluing.  Wooden clothes pins always make nice little clamps and a liner of freezer paper helps keep the wrong things from gluing together.

I also made up a fun paste and copy style letter to include along with my mini MOO cards

I followed the same process for all the envelopes but the final details make each unique. (Washi tape makes a great way to protect the innocent.)

Once all stuffed, I chose to seal the back flap with tape. 

 All 11 envelopes are now ready to go out in the mail today a bit ahead of the May 1st deadline.  

Check out the envelopes Tara is receiving and documenting on her blog. There's already some really wonderful examples. Before even receiving any envelopes myself, I can say this had been a lot of fun. And while the whole process of making the envelopes took several days of my bits of creative time, I will be making more of these envelopes soon. Maybe I'll see you in the next swap.