Recently an amazing pen pal of mine Rachel (Check out her blog here: http://snailmai.blogspot.co.uk/) introduced me to the wonderful world of friendship books which are a really great way to make new pen pals.
(Not my photo)
Basically the idea of friendship books is to meet new pen pals who are already part of the snail mail community. They can either be made for you or you can make one yourself so in this post I am going to show you some that I have made for other people.
But first here's how to make one!
1. If you are making one for yourself then you obviously already have permission to use your own details however, if you are making one for someone else you need their permission first before passing on their address. Sometimes label bags are sent around, this is where people put their address in a bag to be sent around in order to make new pen pals. If you come across one of these bags, the addresses inside are generally expected to be made into Friendship books so you don't generally need permission for that. The people I have made these books for are addresses I got sent to me in a Label bag which said "Make friendship books out of these labels".
2. Get some paper or card or something for the cover, this can really be anything. It doesn't matter if the friendship book is simply made of one folded sheet of plain paper but in my opinion, the more creative the friendship book, the more exciting. For this I chose some craft paper I bought from IKEA. Tack IKEA haha.
3. I then folded it and cut it to size how I wanted it. In this instance I cut the paper into 4 equal size pieces.
4. I then folded them into a booklet shape (in half).
5. Next I created the front of the Friendship book making sure it stated 4 important things: what it is, who made it, who it is for and who to send it to when it is full.
6. I haven't yet but the next step will be to send it on to one of my pen pals so they can add their address to the inside and then send on to another of their pen pals.
And that's it! The book is then out of my hands to complete itself. It's quite fun and nice to do if you like making things because trust me, if you receive a label bag then you will have plenty of friendship books to make haha!
I found a page about them on wikipedia which had a lot of really interesting ideas for alternative Friendship books so if you're interested you can check that out here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friendship_book