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Blog > Amiko's beautiful postcards!

The other day, while randomly browsing the internet for inspiration, I chanced upon this Tumblr, where I noticed all the beautifully decorated postcards… which upon further inspection, proved to be actual Postcrossing cards!

Look how pretty they are:

Amiko's postcards

My jaw dropped at all the detail on the back… from the stickers, to the decoration tapes, to the carefully chosen stamps… even the address labels and Postcard ID bubbles were pretty! :) After much oohing and aahing, I decided I had to get in touch – and luckily Amiko (aka amiko_h) who comes from Japan, kindly agreed to do a mini-interview about her art! :)

Here’s what she had to say:

Can you tell us a little bit about your decoration process? What inspires you? Where do you start?

Firstly I choose a postcard for the recipient after checking his/her favorite or wishlist. Then I pick up the main theme such as color or motif. Sometimes I connect the theme with the postcard image, sometimes I pick up the other motif from the recipient’s favorites, or sometimes I just connect the theme with the stamp I want to use at the time. At this selection phase, you should also remember your taste. Enjoy yourself. Actually I never use my dislikes.

Next I choose material from my collection, and try this or that combination on the card for the color and total layout including message area. Usually it takes me the most amount of time to fix the layout. When you have the feeling of interlocking pieces, go on to finish it!

Amiko's postcards
Which materials do you use to decorate your postcards?

Mainly I use washi tapes and ready-made stickers for my decoration. Sometimes I put in some cut-out from origami, my hand-made stickers, scraps from magazines and use my hand-carved rubber stamps. Of course, you should remember beautiful postal stamps! I am apt to buy on impulse those small material as well as postcards whenever I find them…

Amiko's postcards
What are the member’s reactions when they receive your postcards? Do they appreciate the extra effort?

There is either some appreciation or nothing. Half and half. But it doesn’t matter so much either way… I think the decoration is just decoration. And I myself enjoy the process more than anything! :)

I think the most important thing in Postcrossing and penpaling is a kind of hospitality. I always consider the recipient as my guests or friends I haven’t met yet. Without any decoration, people would be happy when they get warm message and consideration.

Happy Postcrossing!

And finally, can you show us your workstation… where the magic happens?
Amiko's work area

Thank you Amiko, that was lovely! Though now I’m sure I’ll have dreams of stickers and washi tapes…

Do you decorate your postcards too? Leave some tips on the comments – we’re always looking for inspiration! :)

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64 comments so far

Leisa, Turkey
Beautiful cards! I hope Amiko gets my address next :)
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kiekies, South Africa
Love the Totoro postcard! One of my fav movies!
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Candyd, United States of America
Oh they are beautiful! I could only wish :)
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Sharayu_Gangurde, India
WOW!! These are absolutely stunning postcards! I admire her efforts. I decorate my cards too. I always paste a butterfly sticker on every card I send. Its nice to send a part of my personality through such decorative means! I enjoy choosing butterflies. :)

Would love to send and receive a card from Amiko! :)
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SandyLeone, Netherlands
beautiful cards, wow!
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clarissawam, Luxembourg
How wonderful! I keep meaning to elaborately decorate my cards, but rarely do (tho I do use stickers & stamps). I have tons of washi tapes tho so now I wanna giving it another try, but I feel like I will just be copying Amiko now :P
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Saouri, Spain
Amazing decoration in every postcard.
Sadly, as Amiko pointed, there are people who doesn't appreciate that effort.

Her Tumblr sure will inspire me to put more details in the back of my postcards. ^___^
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Riaa75, Norway
Amazing;-)
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zzzys, China
Each postcard is very attentively, to decorate and writing!Very nice postcard, I love it
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Wei_Yi, Malaysia
Amazing! I am sure anyone wishes to get a card from you :)
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LaSonrisa, Germany
Wow, Amikos postcards are amazing. It's so wonderful to receive such a lovely decorated postcard, because you can see that the sender invested a lot of time and appreciates the recipient. I'd love to receive a card from Amiko :)
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Geminiscp, Portugal
Really cute & creative! They make other cards look so bad. :D CONGRATULATIONS!!!! :)
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wjk, United States of America
Sweet! These cards are beautiful. I would love to receive an Amiko card :)
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postmuse, United States of America
Wonderful! And I mostly love Amiko's reaction to the people who have no comment about her creativity ... she lets it go and just keeps creating! Bravo!
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anagahan, North Macedonia
Id be delighted to find such a card in my mailbox! I love the heart and soul put into this!
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ingeli, United Kingdom
Amiko has moved postcrossing up a few levels, to the point of artistry. Although nowhere close to Amiko's talent I have had to resort to using my own photographs and getting postcards then professionally printed, some with a little icon of my avatar. This because the choice of cards from my part of the world is very limited. Unfortunately this practice turns out to be quite expensive with cards ending up costing about £1.30 for a small standard card. I think Amiko has a better idea so it might be back to the drawing board for me.
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Conelmate, Argentina
Awesome. I make handmade cards to those who might like them, and this has given me new ideas to decorate both sides of the cards!
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rosenbusch, Germany
Creative decoration, fantastic postcards....
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vonxblood, United States of America
Her cards are awesome!!! :)

I usually decorate the backs of my cards with stickers and rubber stamps. :)
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laklassen, Canada
What gorgeous & creative cards! Here's hoping to being on the receiving side one day.
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Sprinkledonut, Canada
Amiko! Your cards are really outstanding. You have an amazing talent and eye! I also love decorating my outgoing mail and try to make the back of the card a nice colourful surprise for each recipient when they flip it over. My cards always end up looking really busy but yours have a real elegance! I completely agree that there is so much fun in the process of settling down to work on a card, with all your various art supplies at hand. Time has a way of flying by when you work on something you love doing.

Great article and interview! Thanks, Ana.
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ericdeng, Taiwan
I really love Japan's card and the writing of Japanese! Their writing and nice decoration on the card... maybe is the world's best!
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gettysburgbob, United States of America
so very nice that she spends so much time and effort on each person's postcard....she is very thoughtful and creative....
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gwyllion, Belgium
Gorgeous
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sabz_83, Germany
She made a fantastic work and with a lot love and time.
I can understand Amiko I also decorate each postcard. With washi tape, drawings and stickers.
Sometimes you get no reaction and some are happy, it's always exciting.
Great effort!
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ankehelene, Germany
I also love decorating the backside of the postcards with different colours/pencils...sometimes in the same way as I decorate my ceramics www.toepferei-geissler.de
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Ejderha, Netherlands
Beautiful decorations! I also love to decorate my cards but I have to admit that it sometimes depends on my mood or how inspired I feel at that moment. Looking at this makes me want to be more creative with my cards.
I love your postcard-art, Amiko!
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danielc, United Kingdom
Very beautifully decorated! I usually put one or more stickers on the cards that I send, fish, birds, butterflies etc. I also love to receive decorated cards and nice stamps of course!
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jjmedusa, United States of America
How fabulous! I also hopes she gets my address! Her profile says she is open to direct swaps so I bet she will get a lot of requests now.
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ladybug513, United States of America
I love these decorations! I usually decorate for a holiday, or a birthday. And, I quite often add a ladybug sticker to my mailings!
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sinta, Indonesia
I thought I've decorated my cards enough, what a shame it's nothing compared to Amiko's amazing artwork. Arigato Amiko, for giving us so much inspiration!!!
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Ebbles, United States of America
I am mystified by people who request not to receive hand-made cards. Invariably the cards which leave me cold are view cards of anonymous, interchangable public buildings. The most beautiful cards so far (out of roughly 600 cards) have almost always been hand made.
Thank you for sharing this with us!
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amiko_h, Japan
Hello Everyone! Thanks a lot for your comments and messages! Here is one more tip. This book could be helpful to improve your overall designing sense: "The Non-Designer's Design Book"
http://amzn.to/1eZ26ZG
It is a longtime seller for the visual novice. It is not specifically for decoration, but you could learn how to use a small space on your postcard for your beautiful expression:)
Happy Postcrossing!
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mingshu, Finland
really lovely style and creative :) keep it up
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dollart, Finland
lovely interview of such talented decorator. I have also stickers and washi tapes but i still havent used them so much. Maybe this example makes be do little bit more effort :)
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Naninuneno, Indonesia
I love Amiko's Workstation :) Sooo neat :)
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Tamerlane, Serbia
Amiko, what lovely postcards you make. So much dedication and hard work for somebody you don't know...I admire you.
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pucky, Netherlands
What a beautiful cards these are! The backside is always a puzzle for me. I myself like a lot of writing and also do this on my sent cards, but then I run out of space for other things. It is very inspiring to see your work! I will try to do something in this direction as well , because it looks great! Thanks for the booktip!
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kamikm, United States of America
They are beautiful!! I can only hope ill be on her list!!
Kathy (kamikm)
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sumares, Puerto Rico
I, too, have been inspired by creative users like Amiko to rethink how I decorate the postcards I prepare. Like Amiko wrote, I try to establish a theme with my stamps and stickers, be it a color or subject matter that matches either the recipient or the card subject. It has taken me longer to prepare my postcards while I gather my materials (stickers, postage stamps, washi / deco tape, rubber stamps), but like she said: the act of creating / giving is its own reward!
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Luziaceleste, Brazil
Congratulations Amiko to turn this project even better!
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purplekiwi, United States of America
Sometimes I put little stickers or a pterodactyl stamp (because who doesn't love dinosaurs?) on the back of my postcards if there is room after writing the message. And if the person says they would like a handmade card I will make them one. Nothing like this though! Great job. :)
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Tepexa24, United States of America
Simply Beautiful! Amazing Amiko :)
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YiliLoh, Malaysia
Wow! Very creative, beautiful and amazing postcard. :) i like it. I hope to recieve one of them. Amiko-san, can we exchange card(s)?! Hehe! :p
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LarissaV, Netherlands
O wow, they are really pretty!
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lucymonty, United Kingdom
Beautiful! How lovely to take so much time and effort on the back of the postcards, I would definitely appreciate it! Hope I receive a card from Amiko some day :-D
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LittleCableCars, United States of America
I'm really inspired! I'm lucky to have a Japanese stationery store nearby. Will pick up some tapes at the Cherry Blossom Festival. Nice ideas, Amiko.
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Spacy, Germany
I love these creativ postcard ... so amazing ... and do the same with my sent postcard ... choose a theme of the wish list, find the right stamp, or put on something special of my hometown, or draw something and so on ... its wonderfull to create on the back of the postcard a new one ... well done Amiko ... very professional, I think!
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Vagabond_Trader, United States of America
One thing I love doing along with pitting washi tapes and stickers is lightly rubbing an ink pad across the surface of the backside to give it tye dye affect. I do this with every single card. I choose up to 3 colors from my ink pad and just dab around the edges and lighty sweep the ink pad across the surface the end result always turns out so pretty and colorful. :)
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lama1, Netherlands
Beautiful! I wish I was that creative. I already have one disadvantage: worlds worse handwriting, so even with the best effort and lots of nice stickers or stamps it looks terrible.
Well can't make nice cards but love receiving them :) Best part is discovering things and part of themes days after you received (and registered) the card.
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Becrec, United States of America
Very creative. I also decorate some of my cards. I purchased two books of Harry Potter stickers & 20 stamps that were issued here in the USA just for Postcrossing. I also found at a flea market, postcards with an adhesive back that I used to make my own cards.
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Cake-Pop, Germany
WOW! Oh I hope Amiko gets my address too :-)
Wonderful cards - so amazing!
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Singalarius, Germany
This is postcrossing on a very high level. I wish I would have her talent. I guess, I have to learn a lot more, to achieve her perfectionism. A big bow to this Japanese postcrosser.
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Helen66liu, China
I love it!
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Sunneva12, Norway
ooh, how beautiful! I wish you got my adress to ;)
I'm also loking forwards to try to decorate my card! your cards is a big inspiration.
happy postcrossing!
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riinsomnia, Indonesia
lovely! hoping she gets my address in the future :DD

nice works amiko-san ♡
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Robin67, Austria
How beautiful! :-) I, too, love to receive nicely decorated cards! :-)

I mostly use rubber stamps and always special postage stamps. When I send cards from holidays I try to find nice stickers for them.

For a long, long time I took my cards to the post office for special postmarks, but very few people noticed or mentioned them, so eventually I stopped.
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Antosie, United States of America
Beautiful work. Very artistic.
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hopeley, United States of America
#1 every postcard sent gets a heart stamp, sending love around the world
#2, yes, I decorate with stickers (some 3-D), rubber ink stamps, washi tape, cut outs, ribbon, the nice thing about decorating is if I can't find a card of postcrossers favorite(s) postcard, I promise you they will know I read their profile by the stickers, stamps, etc.
#3, I buy many USA stamps on ebay so I have a wide variety, not just what is recent but Harry Potter is great!
#4 I am able to write small and clear so I can get away with both, decorating and writing
#5 I get about a 50% response of liking my decorations, many postcrossers want writing, writing, writing only.
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ichigo, China
So cute
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Kat_44, United States of America
Wonderfully artistic cards, Amiko. Great inspiration for many of us, especially those of us who don't think we have much "artistic talent." I hope someday to receive one of your very special hand-made cards!!
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bannana, China
DIY postcard is pretty
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DiannaMacau, Macao
wow, beautiful cards ! I really wish to received Amiko's card too. The fun tape / masking take and colorful stamps and stickers really make the card to another level, I like to do that too, I now collect so many nice tapes from Japan and Taiwan, they has the best. Have fun.
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DiannaMacau, Macao
sometimes if I am out of words, I will use more tape too, I hope you don't mind.
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