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Thread: Ideas for pen pal letter "tuck-ins"?

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    Default Ideas for pen pal letter "tuck-ins"?

    Hi, folks!

    I've been learning a little about "tuck-ins" for pen pal letters lately. I know that small, light, flat things are great for tucking into letters as extra little gifts for recipients--things like photos, newspaper clippings, stickers, or stationery...that kind of thing. And I know that in the InCoWriMo letters I've received, I've received a page out of a desk calendar (the kind that uses up one page per day) and I've received a couple blank postcards. Great stuff! But I'm curious...what other kinds of things have other folks here sent or received as tuck-ins? I could use some ideas on what I'd like to consider sending out to folks.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Senior Member Bogon07's Avatar
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    I rec'd a neat adhesive Bad Cartoon (insert registered trademark symbol) tucked in with the letter from Manoeuver in the mail today.
    sinistral hypergraphica - a slurry of ink
    "Nothing means less than zero"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogon07 View Post
    I rec'd a neat adhesive Bad Cartoon (insert registered trademark symbol) tucked in with the letter from Manoeuver in the mail today.
    Neat
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Well if your not a crafty person ( like myself ) you can also try to add: a seal, use personalised stationery ( expensive I think, going to check it out ), stamps, simple designs, poetry, post card about place you visited and are referring to in your letter, blanc paper the recepient can try out on, etc.

    During INCOWRIMO I received several letters that had the above and made me tinking of also adding those extra touches to my letters. Postmuse's envelopes are a must have. I can see them become collector items ;p

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    Senior Member Tracy Lee's Avatar
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    Many people asked me about the stationery I used to do my letters so I wanted to put something in here about it. I used some paper and envelopes I bought from www.americanstationery.com that I had embossed with my initials on the sheet, and my address on the envelope flap. I thought it was really affordable,but that can be relative. I use ivory, but it comes in pink, blue and white as well. Do a search on the site for embossed pastel stationery. You can buy just sheets, or include envelopes. I just restocked and bought 100 of each for less than $100. Should last awhile. I also have an embosser and you can get those for about $40 with one dye, and around $60 if you add another dye. My husband got my initials, and also one that is a bookplate type format for my home library. Just passing along info and options since it was mentioned.

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    Oop...I think we're already going off-course, just a bit...yes, you have to tuck your letter into your envelope, and if it's written on nice stationery, or stationery that is special to you, that's great. But I'm talking about extras that can be added to envelopes before we send the letters off. Apparently tuck-ins are a thing among other pen pals, and that's something I'd love to get into, too. It's just...aside from extra pieces of paper or card stock, I'm not sure what else will survive a trip through the postal system, including the machinery used to process the mail.

    So far, all I'm certain about is that I will not be tucking in two things that other penpals have included, according to other tuck-in lists I've seen: confetti or dirt. Neither of these things are gifts (?) I'd wish to give or receive. Besides, I imagine that giving these things to someone else is really just giving them the gift of a giant mess, which nobody would want (unless they're Oscar the Grouch, I guess). :P

    I'm intrigued by ideas I've seen online about sending tea bags or packets of hot cocoa through the mail as tuck-ins. Apparently that's possible--both of those things were included in tuck-in lists I found online. One thing I've considered, too, is sending off Snapple bottle caps to people. I "collect" bottle caps by snapping pictures of them and posting them to Facebook or Pinterest, but then I toss the bottle caps out. Well...I wonder if these bottle caps would make it through the mail system, maybe? Not sure how they'll stack up against the machinery the postal system uses, though, or if they'll be okay in a regular white envelope with a letter. But sure...my friends know I love Snapple bottle caps, so why not share them? The only thing that would stop me is, I'd be more concerned about how an envelope with a Snapple cap would fare after going through the postal system.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    I now remember I got twice coins from people in Middle-East and Russia in the envelope the card came in. It was via Postcrossing and rather cool I thought considering I have been collecting roman and medieval coins for years.

    And yes Tracy I was thinking of your personalised engraved stationery when making my initial post above ;p

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bohemond76 View Post
    I now remember I got twice coins from people in Middle-East and Russia in the envelope the card came in. It was via Postcrossing and rather cool I thought considering I have been collecting roman and medieval coins for years.
    Very neat! I've heard about coins being included as tuck-ins too.

    Well...I do have one other idea about something I'd like to send out to folks. I'm surprised it didn't occur to me to send this before, but seriously--it's so Chicago...something that tourists probably wouldn't know about, even if they'll probably spot these anywhere in the city...and it's something that most of us Chicagoans love. I'd still want to see about sending out Snapple bottle caps at some point in the future, but I wouldn't want a letter to not get sent to someone because the envelope got ruined during processing because of the bottle cap inside.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Paper samples! I received some sheets of Tomoe River paper. Bogon sent me a small cahier notebook a while back and some stone paper.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrazyIvan View Post
    Paper samples! I received some sheets of Tomoe River paper. Bogon sent me a small cahier notebook a while back and some stone paper.
    That sounds pretty neat I think I've seen stone paper once before? Although now that I think about it, I wonder if someplace like Walgreens would sell a notebook full of stone paper. But that's what it said on the cover of one of the notebooks they were offering.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRoXFiles View Post
    That sounds pretty neat I think I've seen stone paper once before? Although now that I think about it, I wonder if someplace like Walgreens would sell a notebook full of stone paper. But that's what it said on the cover of one of the notebooks they were offering.
    Yes, Walgreens sells the Oxford Stone Paper notebook. It's odd stuff that sucks the life out of some ink. Vibrant inks turn a chalky version of their former shade.
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    Erm, it depends on what you have and what the other person enjoys. As a numismatist, whenever I encounter another one I tend to "tuck in" a dollar bill. Now if they are American I may tuck in an extra one I have, if they're not American I tend to tuck in one from where my parents live. I've also received (and loved) bookmarks. Sometimes people have handwritten a treasured/favourite recipe and sent those along (I love to try new things) and even a comic strip. Hope that helps you with some ideas.

    This isn't really tuck in, but as a teenager, my pen pals and I would paste cut out of things from magazines onto the letters (may want to fold the letter first, that way you're not pasting on a fold) that we thought was particularly interesting. Plus it made each letter unique and added something to look at besides ink colour.

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    Everyday here I learn something new today it is:
    Numismatists are often characterized as students or collectors of coins, the discipline also includes the broader study of money and other payment media used to resolve debts and the exchange of goods.
    Caribbean_skye have you seen the Tornado Retro 51 Special Edition series – Tornado Bill ?
    It has a facsimilie of an American note wrapped around the pen barrel.
    As a bonus these are one of the best non-fountainpen writing experiences around. (thanks again KI for the black one)

    KI, don't use Noodler's Dragons Napalm on that Italian stone paper it will take a couple of days to dry and feather out 1/8" or 2-3mm on either side of the pen line.
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    Quote Originally Posted by caribbean_skye View Post
    Erm, it depends on what you have and what the other person enjoys. As a numismatist, whenever I encounter another one I tend to "tuck in" a dollar bill. Now if they are American I may tuck in an extra one I have, if they're not American I tend to tuck in one from where my parents live. I've also received (and loved) bookmarks. Sometimes people have handwritten a treasured/favourite recipe and sent those along (I love to try new things) and even a comic strip. Hope that helps you with some ideas.

    This isn't really tuck in, but as a teenager, my pen pals and I would paste cut out of things from magazines onto the letters (may want to fold the letter first, that way you're not pasting on a fold) that we thought was particularly interesting. Plus it made each letter unique and added something to look at besides ink colour.
    Thanks for your suggestions--they're very helpful

    I'll have to figure out what I might want to include as tuck-ins for my American penpals. I do have a tidy stack of magazines (eg Entertainment Weekly) piling up, for instance...I love the magazine and have had a subscription for years now, but haven't been able to find the time to actually read them. But folks can get those anywhere...it'd be nothing special if I included anything from there in letters. :/ I do have the one idea...and actually, I got to try it out on a couple of letters, so it's gonna take a few days to see how that goes over. Since my InCoWriMo penpals and I are all still getting to know each other, I'd want to try to see what is unique to Chicago and is something that reflects me and my life. I think that'd be a good place to start.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Here are some ideas for tuck-ins. Some of these may have been suggested, others depend on the kind of person you are writing to and how much you want to spend on that person.

    Possible tuck-ins:

    • a simple sketch or drawing
    • a message written in code
    • a meaningful poem
    • post office stamps
    • postcard of local landmark
    • a local leaf (pressed flat)
    • favorite stick of gum
    • a bookmark
    • a favorite written quote
    • a cartoon or comic
    • a swatch of ink sample
    • an extreme close-up picture of a everyday object. Other person would try to guess what it is.
    • a sample card of favorite perfume or cologne
    • a portion of sheet music of favorite song or music
    • a picture of a landmark or object seen everyday when going to work
    • a picture or article of your favorite actor, artist, musician, author, etc.
    • a seasonal holiday card or sticker
    • a blank or filled in mad lib
    • a small origami item
    • a handmade coupon
    • a flat toy that needs assembly (i.e. airplane or other item made of balsa wood or plastic)
    • a funny picture of the writer
    • an inexpensive gift card
    • a photocopy of a line or paragraph from your favorite book


    I'll add more if I think of some.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogon07 View Post
    I rec'd a neat adhesive Bad Cartoon (insert registered trademark symbol) tucked in with the letter from Manoeuver in the mail today.
    I got one of those as well...lol. Does yours start with "tap tap tap....?"
    Will
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    I have an idea for you. Get a group together and play a card game. Have each player shuffles a deck, deals out a card for each of the players and them selves. They write a letter to each player, inserting the card (without looking at it), and send it on its way. All the players get a letter plus a card from the other players and who ever can make the best hand wins.

    There are lots of variation on this and it would be fun to see what type of playing cards each person sends.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Type40 View Post
    I have an idea for you. Get a group together and play a card game. Have each player shuffles a deck, deals out a card for each of the players and them selves. They write a letter to each player, inserting the card (without looking at it), and send it on its way. All the players get a letter plus a card from the other players and who ever can make the best hand wins.

    There are lots of variation on this and it would be fun to see what type of playing cards each person sends.
    That sounds pretty neat. Reminds me of stories I've heard about people playing chess via mail...which is something I personally wouldn't do because I don't know how to play chess in the first place :P...and I could've sworn I've read about people sending playing cards to each other just because. I think the latter would be pretty interesting if you collect playing cards...wouldn't it be neat to have a full stack of playing cards, with each card coming from a completely different deck, based on what your penpals have sent you? I bet it'd be one weird, mismatched deck, but it'd be neat because you and your penpals would've built that deck together.
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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    Speaking of sending a poem: April is National Poetry Month, and April 18 is Poem In Your Pocket Day. You can get printable, pocket-sized poems that would make perfect enclosures.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chaimann View Post
    Speaking of sending a poem: April is National Poetry Month, and April 18 is Poem In Your Pocket Day. You can get printable, pocket-sized poems that would make perfect enclosures.
    Thanks for the idea

    Well...I wonder if anyone would appreciate receiving an entry from my "F in Exams" desk calendar. Maybe, if you're lucky enough to write to me on a certain day, you just might receive that day's entry? And some of the answers students give are really funny...makes me wonder who's actually more clever, the students or teachers. :P
    Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy...but here's my letter. So write me, maybe?

    If you're an InCo pen pal, please PM me first if you'd like to write to me. Thanks!

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