Portland Correspondence Co-op

Letter Writing Socials, Mail


On Tuesday, January 20th, I went to the first meeting of PDXCC, or Portland Correspondence Co-op. The meeting was held at the IPRC, and it was basically a letter writing social. It was so much fun! I was completely surprised to see how many people were there; there had to be at least 30 people! To be fair, I haven’t been to a lot of letter writing socials (okay, I’ve been to one) but I never imagined more than 10 people to show up to one. I guess it’s not that surprising, Portland is a city full of creative folks!


The meeting started out with a little speech by Niko, who started the PDXCC. It was a great introduction for the people who weren’t too familiar with mail art, and he also passed around some great examples of mail art and mail art books. After that, it was a free for all! I did more socializing than letter writing. I grabbed one of the passports to get my first official PDXCC artistamp, as well as a few other artistamps made by some of the attendees.

I shared a table with several people, most were collaging postcards. I ended up talking to a nice woman named Samantha for most of the evening. She is an avid letter writing but didn’t know much about mail art. I told her about my experience with mail art, and about the kind of things people send along in letters. I showed her the stationery I made, and gave her some suggestions on how to find some cool pen pals.


I’m so happy I went! I had a really hard time leaving my apartment (I always do) but knew that I was going to have some fun so I forced myself to get on my bike and head down. These will be monthly meetings, and the next one will be on February 17th. I’m hopefully going to have some time to make an artistamp for the event! One of the conditions of taking a passport is a the promise to make a stamp to distribute at a future event.

15 thoughts on “Portland Correspondence Co-op

  1. Oh yes! Make an artistamp — a passport stuffed with artistamps is a treasure — I’m on my 5th passport! I wish I could stop by and join in fun up there in Portland sometime.


  2. This looks like so much fun! I’ve seen some artistamps before and really love the concept, but have no idea how I’d go about making them. If you do make some, please share your process 😀


    1. They are little works of art, the size of a postage stamp. Also called faux postage. Mail artists tend to create their own to put on their envelopes (not to be used as real postage, of course!), and a lot of people trade them within the community. It’s a lot of fun!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. you are inspiring me to try making an artistamp – I’ve wanted to, and managed to gather a few on different mailart that i have received, but it just hasn’t been the right time!

    it looks like you had so much fun – i would love to attend an event such as this – I was helping to plan a type-in in Raleigh/Durham at one time – maybe plans for that should be resurrected with correspondence/mailart added in!


    1. Do it! I dunno if you use Photoshop but it would be lovely to see one of your drawings on a stamp. It would be pretty easy to scan one in and make a sheet of artistamps!

      I think everyone should attend a letter writing social at least once. They are a lot of fun 🙂


      1. yes, i am actually a graphic designer by trade so that would be an easy way to do it! i was trying to think of a way that might challenge me more, like carving a stamp… something out of my comfort zone… but there’s no reason i can’t do both! i actually just made some little imitation stamps for a friend’s wedding (i wouldn’t classify them as artistamps exactly as the application was so different) and i suppose i should blog about those soon 🙂

        i am starting to dip my toes into stationery design and would like to offer seals/stickers/artistamps too but i’m kind of just getting myself organized after a bout of depression that kept me away from my creative pursuits.

        do you have the one you made on the blog anywhere?


      2. Well, there you go! I definitely understand the want to try something different though. Carving stamps is super fun, and really easy. I have plans to make a post on that soon. Plus, you already are an amazing artist so you should have an easy time carving!

        I’m sorry to hear about your depression, although I’m happy to hear that you’re getting back into the swing of your creativity.

        I posted on my old blog when I made the artistamp. You can check it out here: http://apurplerat.blogspot.com/2014/03/artistamp.html


      3. it’s gorgeous, I love it!!! I bought stamp carving supplies today – I’ve only done it with foam and stuff so I’m looking forward to being able to do something more complex!


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