Wednesday, February 13, 2013

This Charming Dame Lesson 3 - Social Stationary

My Dearest Kittens,

I apologize that this post is severely overdue.  It's been almost a month since my last 'This Charming Dame' lesson.  While I had the items for my last two posts (a passport and more Little Black Dresses than you could shake a stick at), I did not have any type of stationary.

While I was looking around for the right stationary - simple and classic - I started thinking about the act of receiving notes and letters in the mail.  Many of us have become so accustomed to the convenience of the digital age that the most personal thing we either send or receive are emails.  And many times, these emails are not even personal enough to be addressed to one person and, instead, are mass mailings, you know, in an effort to save time.  Not that there is anything wrong with this form of communication, or that there is anything wrong with instant messages or texts - they are, after all, the ultimate in instant gratification communications...but there is something missing.  In the electronic age, few things are tangible anymore.  No one buys a CD, they download.  No one buys a DVD, they stream.  No one buys a book, they upload to their Kindle.  Well, except for me - I refuse to stop buying DVDs and I ESPECIALLY refuse to stop buying books.  I have developed quite the love affair with old books.  But I digress.

Most of us still receive Christmas cards and invitations to formal events in the post.  I know I get excited when I grab my mail and amongst the bills and the junk mail, I see an actual party invitation as opposed to an Evite or a Facebook invite.  While any type of social invite is great, there is something that much more personal and that much more special with a tangible card.  What is even more rare than a party invite in your mailbox (USPS - not Gmail), is a handwritten note or letter waiting there for you.  It's a little magic in an envelope!  Most of us over the age of 20 perhaps, had a pen-pal at one point or another.  I had a few, but the main one is still someone I love dearly and hold very close to my heart.  We wrote to each other for years (the letters started on Lisa Frank stationary, but matured significantly over the years) and I remember eagerly checking the mailbox every day after school to see if there was a response there from her.

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Though I still have the box of letters (a shoe box still wrapped in sunflower wrapping paper - because I was fancy like that), until tonight, I hadn't looked at them in MANY years and even still, I didn't really go through them very thoroughly.  I will need to do that sooner rather than later.  These are special - a time immortalized.  And I will always have them to remember who we both were and how far we've both come.  This box is a time capsule...I can only hope that my letters are also underneath her bed in a box covered in similarly horrific wrapping paper.

 I sifted through this box of memories and came across letters that were indicative of the different years.  The earliest ones were all sent in either brightly colored envelopes and/or included stickers that we thought were worthy of adorning such important communications.  A few years later came the more elaborate and personalized stationary with matching envelopes.  A few years after that, it was essentially whatever we could find - making it fun, if it wasn't already.

When I started looking through the cards, I laughed, cried, felt nostalgic for times and places, and most importantly, was reminded of just how lucky I am to have such fantastic people in my life.

The last letter I received is pretty special, coming all the way from France.  It was such a delight to find a letter in my mailbox - even though it was four years ago, I remember the feeling I had when I received a letter out of the blue, for no reason whatsoever.  And it was fantastic!

Which brings me (the long way) to this lesson - get yourself some nice stationary.  So you can, you know, send someone something.  I got mine from Sugar Paper.  Although they're pricey, I liked how classic their designs are and I love that they are all hand-pressed.  If you want to make someone feel special (what letter from you wouldn't accomplish that?), you might as well do it with fancy stationary.

Hopefully something like this will make you pick up a pen and get to writing people who are special to you.  Hearing that is important.  And the act of writing to someone is something that I know I should be doing more of - though I'm not sure I'll look as carefree as this:

Or as classy as this:

But most likely, as intense as this:

So go ahead, grab whatever you can get your hands on and write someone a letter.  YOU could very well look as fabulous as this:

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And after you mail that letter off, you could find yourself singing this little tune until you receive a response:

Do you send handwritten letters on the regular?  Or do you find yourself, like me, wishing you did more of it?  You can comment here, or write me an honest-to-goodness letter - your choice.

To see my inspiration for the 'This Charming Dame' series, please visit Quite Continental Charm School.

Hope to hear from you soon, Kittens.

All my love - XOXO


  1. I sent tons of letters when I was younger and did so up until after college. I haven't written a letter in a LONG time, though. I agree with you on the stationary--absolutely essential to good letter writing :)

    1. Now's as good a time as any to start back up with the letter writing!

      Glad you stopped by!