Preparing for a garage sale a couple of weeks ago I stumbled across my mom’s old postcards – some dating from 30 years ago! I never knew my mom had a collection or that her friends had traveled so far around the world! Even though they weren’t my mom’s own travel memories, I still appreciated this glimpse into her life when she was younger. It seemed like such a shame that they were boxed up – and then I realized my postcards were probably doomed for the same fate: to lie around in a box until my future progeny stumble across them and depending on how sentimental they are, they will either love ’em or chuck ’em.
I’d rather enjoy my postcards while I have them – just in case my children don’t turn out to be romantics like me! Each card is a reminder of what the world holds, my friends’ adventures, and really, they are also tokens of kindness. After all, someone took the time to write, stamp, and mail. If you’re a serial postcard sender like me, you know tracking down a post office on vacation isn’t always as easy as it sounds…
Now, to the postcard collectors among us, what do you do with these memories?
Up until two weeks ago, I had no answer. At first I thought about framing them – but that would mean I couldn’t read the messages on the reverse! Taping them on a wall or pinning them to a cork board would give me easy access to the messages, but the thought of holes and peeled paper from tape on my memories horrified me! I want to preserve them, not slaughter them!
Then I thought of creating a sling for them: they could be hung for display, but be taken out of the sling easily for reading – brilliant!
Here is how to do it:
1. Depending on how many postcards you have (or how many you think you’ll eventually display), get anywhere from 1m to 1.5m of two strips of ribbon. For aesthetic purposes, I chose contrasting colours and two different width sizes. The larger ribbon measures 3.5cm in width and the smaller, 2.5cm.
2. Put the ribbons on top of each other and using pins mark where you will be making a horizontal stitch (this will also keep the ribbon in place while you work). Give yourself at least 1cm more than the length of a postcard for each slot – this way it will be easier to slip the card in and out (don’t give the card too much extra space or it might fall out easily!). The extra spacing will also reveal the colour of your wider ribbon if you chose a different colour and size.
3. By hand or with a sewing machine, stitch across the ribbons. Cut extra thread. If you make a mistake (i.e. make a slot that’s too small or large), just unstitch and start over, but also double check on the sizes of your postcards – most of them are the same, but they do come in different sizes so you may find one that fits before you do the work of unstitching!
4. Once you are done, you have a few options for hanging. I sewed a little pice of ribbon to the back to create a hook – but you can also hammer it straight into the wall if you like!
I am in love with my new postcard slings and they add a lot of character to my room besides the happiness it brings me to see them there!
I’m not normally a “crafty” person, but I think I’ve caught the bug…