The Handcrafted Letter

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9781580173605: The Handcrafted Letter

Handwritten correspondence is coming back into vogue. Letter writing allows us to slow down and consider our thoughts fully before we commit them to paper. And there is something intimate about a hand-written letter that e-mails, typed letters, and even phone calls can't replace. Sending a hand-written letter is like sending a small part of yourself.

Such a letter is more than just a means of communication, it's a gift - and sometimes a legacy. By sharing letters with family and friends, we maintain lifelong relationships and establish and build closeness with those whom we rarely visit in person.

Paper artist Diane Maurer-Mathison has used her design sense and expertise to create this stylish guide to preserving memories in beautiful, heirloom-quality cards and letters. Fully illustrated in color, The Handcrafted Letter covers it all. Rediscovering your voice. Correcting handwriting problems. Choosing the best writing implements and paper. Planning and laying out letter projects. Plus all the tricks of the trade: cutting, gluing, cropping photographs, stamping, stenciling, and using decorative-edge scissors. An entire chapter is devoted to decorative paper techniques, including Suminagashi marbling and paste papers. And there are more than 40 projects that will inspire enthusiasts, from love letters and artful envelopes to quilled cards, annual holiday letters, and projects for kids.

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Review:

The convenience of today's technology often costs us in unseen ways; all the e-mails that stream our way can't begin to replace the magic of one handwritten letter. Paper artist extraordinaire Diane Maurer-Mathison knows this well, and has set about redressing the situation in her exquisite The Handcrafted Letter.

From improving our handwriting to getting over writer's block, Maurer-Mathison helps us hone our skills and overcome excuses for not writing. Then she inspires us with dozens of ideas for beautiful missives to friends, lovers, children; inventive thank-you cards, congratulatory cards, travel postcards; and unique holiday and special-occasion cards. A mixture of artful papers and attractive, mostly easy techniques (stenciling, embossing, collage, spatter painting, leaf printing, quilling, paper weaving) yield an array of correspondence that anyone would be thrilled to receive.

Along with project directions and gorgeous photographs, the author provides suggestions for such thoughtful extras as special enclosures (a prepaid phone card, a favorite recipe, a lottery ticket, a packet of scented bubble bath, for example) and artful envelope designs. A brief rundown on making your own decorative paper and a good source list are also included. More than just the decorative veneer that many card-making books address, this guide teaches us how to put real meaning into visually appealing messages. --Amy Handy

From the Back Cover:

Convey your true feelings of friendship, warmth, and love

Nothing speaks to the heart quite like a handwritten letter. Such a letter is more than just the words it carries, it's a gift. Today, in our society of phones, faxes, e-mails, and post-it-notes, the handwritten letter is almost a forgotten art.

In this gorgeously illustrated guide to creating personal notes, letters, and cards, Diane Maurer-Mathison shares her inspiring and practical ideas for expressing love and gratitude to friends and family through the written word. You'll find advice, examples, and inspiration, as well as a chance to use your rediscovered skills in a dozen creative projects, each of which is presented with full-color photographs and step-by-step instructions. These unique projects range from a thank-you card to a letter to a child to the always eagerly received love letter, and they ensure that this book will remain a source of inspiration for years to come.

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