Friday, July 29, 2011


The first step after deciding who you are going to write a letter to must be what you're going to write on. Selecting stationary is one of my favorite parts of the art of letter writing!

Don't get me wrong - I've certainly sent many a letter on a piece of notebook paper with a shaggy edge. And sometimes the immediacy of needing to write a letter surpasses one's ability to procure nice stationary. But it's so much more enjoyable - both to write on and to receive - a letter or card on nice stationary.

Right now, I have 3 kinds of stationary. One is a card made on recycled paper that has nice tones of blue and green and pictures of a leaf and flowers. It was a gift from Danielle, the owner Yoga Oceanside, where I sometimes teach and volunteer. Danielle shares my love of stationary and paper products. It's from a company called New Leaf Paper, and apparently you can buy their stock online.

Another kind I have is a gift from my mother-in-law, Julia. It looks like it was made in India but it doesn't say on the packaging. The envelope itself, which holds the stationary, is ornately decorated with gold, teal and blue flowery-leafy designs. Inside there are two cards - one with the same design, and one with a similar design in brown, red and yellow. It has a really nice texture, rather soft, and is pleasing to write on.

My other kind was a gift to myself - I bought it at a lovely independent bookstore at San Diego harbor. It's Nancy Drew stationary. I was a huge Nancy Drew fan as a little girl, and my love for reading can largely be attributed to Nancy herself. And my grandma, who kept the original set of Nancy Drew hardcovers in a bookcase in her basement, and loaned them to us grandkids - it was like we had our own private Nancy library. And of course, my parents, who encouraged me to read:)

I loved grandma's bookshelf so much. I remember the excitement of getting to her house, finished book in hand, and running to the basement to pick out a new one. She must have had at least 50 books, all hard-cover originals, all with a very distinct 1960s smell to them. I loved the texture of the books, the weight of them in my hand, and the mysteries - that Nancy always solved - inside.

When I found the stationary at the Crow's Nest, I had to have it. I recently wrote to my friend Kora on this stationary, and she wrote back, saying, "How, how, HOW (?!) have we known and loved each other this long and we never shared our love for Nancy Drew?" Indeed, it is a shared love.

Kora's return letter came on a homemade card, certainly the very best kind of stationary there is :)