Virginia Woolf argued for the necessity of a room of one’s own in which to work creatively. That prospect sounds deliciously civilized to us! Here, we’re simply trying to carve out a little space to dedicate ourselves to the act of handwritten correspondence. Setting up a writing area in my dining room (yes, I need to double up on how we use space in our house!) has been a thoroughly delightful experience.
I’ve always used this desk as a catch-all place for mail, kids’ schoolwork, magazines and the like. And it was pretty messy. But now, I’m committing myself to using this desk specifically for writing. As Karen said in an earlier post, sometimes you need to physically mark off territory to make a habit out of something. (I’ll just move the messy piles somewhere else).
I’ve found a few things to elevate the job of paying bills and increase the pleasure of sending a quick note to a friend. Here are some vintage stamps from Verde Studio that are unused. You can combine them so that they add up to the current postage rate and send them through the mail. I put them loosely in this adorable double handled cup I found at an antiques store.
This vintage postage scale still works (although the prices are no longer relevant!). I found this on our last trek to the Brimfield Antique Show. My youngest son surprised me this morning by leaving one of his animals on top. I think the rhino definitely belongs here.
There is no longer any ink filling up this inkwell, which I found scavenging around at a flea market. But the feather is an actual pen! In this photo, you can see the back of a postcard by Missive Maven. The front is standing up in the background, a collage she’s done of a swallow carrying an “air mail” ribbon. The Missive Maven is devoted to the art of the handwritten letter and she has a lot of resources to share on the subject!
Here you can see the vintage toast rack I’m using to hold postcards, stationery and envelopes. Behind the post card is a set of personalized stationery made for me by Heidi of Row House 14 . She has some beautiful options for customization and, in keeping with our theme, we think that every desk should house personal letterhead. It’s very civilized, don’t you think?
The final purchase for my re-established writing space was a small collection of vintage airmail envelopes from Red Star Post. I'm saving these for some very special letters. Perhaps ones I’ll write to my sons now, talking about what our lives are like, and then mailing them to them when they are older.
So, a final look at my desk. Front and center is a letterpress thank-you card by Wiley Valentine. We’ve partnered with them on our “Open Letter” project, which you can read about here. We love how they incorporate their intricate designs on the envelopes, letting you know that something very thoughtful is waiting for you on the inside! I hope you are inspired to carve out a writing niche for yourself. Send us a picture if you do!