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Postcrossing Blog

News, updates, and all kinds of goodies and stories from the postal world!

It's only February yet, and we're already reporting the second Postcrossing-themed stamp being issued this year... 2017 is off to a fantastic start!   

So ladies and gentlemen, we're proud to announce that in just 2 days, Romania will join the ranks of the countries which have issued a Postcrossing stamp. They may have less than 1500 postcrossers there, but their unwavering enthusiasm for the project convinced their post office this was a good idea — and we're glad for their fierceness! We're especially thankful to Mihnea (aka MihneaR) whose persistence and commitment to this idea in every step of the way were crucial in bringing this new stamp to life.

Have a look at their new stamp, which will be published on February 24th:

Romanian Postcrossing stamp

We bet it'll look pretty cool on all their postcards! 😀

The new stamp sheet (and accompanying FDC) will be available from Friday on Romfilatelia's shops in Bucharest, Bacau, Brasov, Cluj-Napoca, Iasi and Timisoara or online, on the WOPA website. Romanian Postcrossing stamp

To celebrate the stamp issue, Romanian postcrossers are organising a couple of meetups in Bucharest this Friday and Saturday, and planning to send lots of postcards with the new stamp. Do join them, if you're in the area!

And if you're not in Romania, keep an eye on your mailbox — your next postcards from there might feature their shiny new stamp!

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Living in a touristic area can be a bit challenging. While postcards are easy enough to find, they're usually über-touristy, featuring the beaches and little else. It gets boring after a while... which is why I was delighted to discover Rosa's postcards on our way back from a trip to the market in Olhão. Turns out, her mom has a little store by the waterfront that showcases local art and products — including Rosa's gorgeous postcards and art.

We thought it was time we had another post on our stationery makers' series, and reached out to Rosa and ask her a few questions. Turns out, she's been drawing ever since she could hold a pencil, and makes more than just postcards! :)

Joana Rosa Bragança
Could you introduce yourself briefly?

I'm Joana Rosa Bragança (but you can call me just Rosa!) and I'm an artist & illustrator based in Olhão, a fishing town in the Algarve region. I love living near the sea! Besides drawing and painting, I also like to spend my time photographing with film cameras, walking in nature, reading, sewing and trying cake recipes. I love mornings, cats, artisanal ice creams, fresh figs and old books.

What inspires you?

I get a lot of inspiration from the people I see, not only the people of my hometown, with their strong characters and looks, but also the foreigners who pass by, who are a lot these days. One of my favorite themes is the beach and bathers, and here I have plenty of "models" to observe! Still, not all my characters are inspired by real people, some of them happen to be really bizarre and come directly from my imagination. I also love to draw all sorts of animals and plants.

Joana Rosa Bragança
Are you a postcard or letter writer yourself?

I used to be, I even had pen friends when I was a teenager... then the internet appeared and made me forget it a little. Nevertheless, I love sending the orders of my online shop inside envelopes full of doodles and postage stamps. Postage stamps are awesome! My favorites are the ones with illustrations or photos of fauna and flora.

If you could define your style in 3 words, what would they be?

Dreamy, joyful, ironic.

And could you show us your workspace, the place where magic happens?
Joana Rosa Bragança Joana Rosa Bragança

Thank you so much, Rosa! You can check these and other postcards and art on her online shop. And if you know of other stationery makers we should check out, let us know in the comments!

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Graceful Envelope Contest

Another year, another chance to participate on the Graceful Envelope Contest!

This year, the theme is "Pushing the envelope", which is very exciting as it leaves room for all kinds of artistic interpretations. The organizers explain how this motto embraces two concepts at the heart of the contest:

The first meaning dares you to take your creativity beyond your comfort zone. "Push the envelope" and find new ways to use graphic design, hand lettering and postage stamps to enhance your entry. It may be a small canvas, but you are capable of big ideas.

The Graceful Envelope Contest also celebrates the significance of writing, sending and receiving letters. In this era of email, tweets and emojis, seeing a hand-addressed envelope in your mailbox can make any day special. So your entry should “push the envelope” in the sense of promoting the exchange of letters. Depict the joy of letter writing. Or salute an American tradition as old as the U.S. Constitution, which empowered Congress “to establish post offices and post roads."

One of the previous contest's judges revealed that they're not simply looking for the best calligraphy or painter... in the end, what really matters is the winning combination of all elements in the envelope (ie, design, calligraphy and stamps) and how they work together to reflect the year's theme. The contest is open to entries from all around the world (as long as they arrive before March 27th 2017) and there are separate categories for children too, so do encourage your little ones to participate!

You can read the contest rules and how to participate on the Washington Calligraphers Guild website, and check out all of last year's winners on their Flickr page for some inspiration.

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We did it everyone!! 🎉 40 million postcards delivered and registered! 🎉 What a great way to start the week!

Hurray!

Curious to find out which postcard was the lucky one? Here it goes: Postcard number 40,000,000 (TW-2118751) was sent by navi in Taiwan on December 1st, and registered today at 6:39 AM (UTC) by Alexis11 in France! Hurray!

Not surprisingly, all spots on our guessing game were taken long ago, and the lucky winner was BeckyThatcher, whose guess was spot on! Well done, your new set of 40 Cardcetera postcards are on their way.

The other four lucky postcrossers who came the closest to the right time were Anne-Liam, frosch0980, Neraksrekked and klim4uk — great job! You'll each receive a pack of 20 Cardcetera postcards as well!

Both the sender and the receiver will also receive a surprise pack of 20 postcards from Cardcetera, to celebrate their good luck.

Last but not least, our big heartfelt thank you to our team of volunteers, to Astrid at Cardcetera for generously sponsoring this giveaway with her beautiful cards... and, most of all, to you — all of you who connect the world through postcards!

And now, the countdown to the next million begins — one postcard, and one smile at a time! Happy Postcrossing! :)

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All Postcrossing meetups are special — but sometimes, postcrossers really go the extra mile to do something a little different on their own gatherings. We love hearing all about meetups taking place in trains or deserted islands... and now, a meetup that happened in two countries simultaneously!

Joint Wuxi-Singapore meetup Joint Wuxi-Singapore meetup

This special meeting happened on January 15th, and was organized by Shiyun (aka Sybones) from Singapore and Jifeng (aka shijifeng) from Wuxi, in China. Distances are relative in the internet era, so despite being 3770km apart, Chinese and Singaporeans postcrossers were able to chat as if being in the same room via their mobile devices.

Shijifeng's friend Arlyna (aka arlynab) designed a special postcard featuring elements from both countries to commemorate the event, which were distributed among the two groups.

Joint Wuxi-Singapore meetup card

Both groups held mini-presentations , wrote postcards and then talked to each other on Facetime. Despite some internet and language hiccups, a great time was had by all!

Joint Wuxi-Singapore meetup Joint Wuxi-Singapore meetup

That sounds like a lot of fun! A big thank you to the organisers and all the attendants for putting such a special meeting together. We challenge you to outdo them on your next meetup — and tell us all about it! :)

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