Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Dear Julia...

I don't read nearly as much as I once did. It is a shame, I know. I read plenty of children's books until I know each page word for word, but adult books have been low on the priority list in the past few years. However, I forced myself to create book time for myself during August (yup, dishes remained dirty for an extra hour or two each day, the computer slipped into sleep mode, and perhaps some soldering was delayed...but the world didn't stop because I read). Guess what? I really, really, really enjoyed getting lost in a good book, again!

The book was My Life in France by Julia Child. She collaborated with her grand-nephew, Alex Prud'homme, in the final stages of her life to put this work together. Reaching back into the 1950s, Julia recalled her time in France and the forces that guided her to cookery. Thanks to her vise-like memory and many old letters between Julia, her husband, family, and friends, the book was full of wonderful descriptions of dinners, moments, and good humor.

After finishing the book, I wondered if letter writing will survive the age of our electronic world. The art of letter writing as a communicative form has boiled down to greeting card pleasantries and proper etiquette. Pure letter writing (where criticisms are doled, partnerships are accepted, hearts are broken, and news is shared) has gone electric. It is far easier to click 'delete' and forever erase words in an email than to throw away a letter or card handwritten by the same person.

Of course, all this reading and thinking got me thinking about stationery and cards. When I was twelve, I received personalized stationery and envelopes from my Gram. Chocolate brown letterpressed script font on an pale mocha, deckle edged paper, this stationery was my most cherished gift, ever. I wrote letters, thank you's, get well's, and condolences on this stationery until my early twenties.

So, I turned to the many amazing craftspeople on Etsy to find some fine examples of handmade stationery and cards. Check out these elegant paper crafts.....


If these lovely items are not inspiration enough to pen a letter to your pal, I don't know what is!
In celebration of letter writing (and letter receiving), I am going to challenge myself to write more letters. But I need letter recipients! So, I turn to my blog readers! If YOU would like to receive a letter from ME, please email your address to: jen@quenchmetalworks.com

Thank you in advance!!


  1. Thanks for the great post. I've added My Life in France to my reading list.

  2. If you like Julia, you'll love her more after reading this book! Thanks for the comment, Christina!

  3. Jen,
    Thanks for the book suggestion! I loved seeing Julia as a child in her cooking shows! Then, after seeing the movie with a friend, I have a renewed interest in this wonderful human being. How very true a statement on letter writing. A lost art. I must admit, I've let my letter writing slip.
    Gotta work on that!

  4. you've inspired me to read that book... and maybe leave that delete button alone more often