Saturday, March 9, 2013

Mail Art

Hello! Michelle Zerull back today to share with you my first design team post here at The Rubber Café! 

As soon as I saw this beautiful POSTOID SET, I knew that I wanted to create mail art.  If you are not familiar with mail art, I'm excited to be the one to introduce you to this fun and eclectic expression of art and design using a plain envelope for my canvas!

Although mail art has no rules, almost all mail art contains rubber stamped images, and The Rubber Café is where you’ll find a wonderful selection!

I started with a couple of inexpensive, plain, white envelopes and added distress inks for color and an aged, distressed look.

The butterfly from the VINTAGE TREASURES set made a wonderful focal image stamped in "Vintage Photo" Distress Ink. The CARD LABELS stamps are not just for cards; they are sized perfectly for an address window! By using a simple masking technique, THE 18th PROCLAMATION, and FLORAL SILHOUETTE stamps created an easy collage background.

After coloring the primary images with chalk pastels, I added the CANCEL MARK stamp with the permanent Memento Tuxedo Black Ink.  With a back and forth motion, I very lightly sprayed workable fixative over the envelopes so the chalk wouldn’t smear.  *Hint... If you don't have fixative spray, try using an inexpensive aerosol hairspray. 
Since Distress Ink is designed to react to water, the dampness from the spray gave a “smudged, or blurred” look to the distress inks as they bled a bit, while keeping the Memento Ink crisp and clear.  The intentional bleeding provided more of a vintage appearance to the envelopes.

Finally, I splattered a few drops of gold acrylic paint across the envelpes.  I like the way the drops created a “watermark” on the distress ink background, as you can see in the close-ups.

I must warn you that mail art can be addictive.  Once you start sending out rubber stamped envelopes, plain envelopes, or “naked” envelopes, will become a thing of the past. 
Thank you for allowing me to share my mail art envelopes with you.  I hope that it has inspired you to create your own mail art.
Happy Stamping!
Stamps: The Rubber Café – Postoid Set, Vintage Treasures, Cancel Mark, 18th Century Proclamation, Card Labels, Floral Silhouette
Ink: Ranger Distress Ink (Antique Linen, Peacock Feathers, Fired Brick, Victorian Velvet, Vintage Photo); Memento Tuxedo Black Ink; Chalk Pastels; Gold Acrylic Paint
Other: Workable Spray Fixative; Plain, White Envelopes


Kristine Reynolds said...


Karen T said...

Michelle- this is womderful! I'm looking at my envelopes in a whole new way.

TesaB said...

Wow! Awesome mail art, Michelle!!! Fab stamping!!!

cherry said...

I lve using envelopes in my artwork...I Love love love what you did to yours! Soooo vintage....yum. cherry

Jelley said...

Nice blog, we are having an opening exhibition of art post cards to our new art studios (which we are still building) out of shipping containers, in Watchet UK.
take a look. First exhibition opens a week on Friday, you are welcome to come!