With a fresh new year filled with Pretty Postal activities, we thought we'd take a moment to re-introduce ourselves to you! Here's a mini interview with Marisa, who loves nothing more than an excuse to make a creative mess!

Hi Marisa! What are 3 fun or interesting facts about you?

I ran a sweet online craft and paper goods shop for many years. Omiyage was one of the first (if not the first!) shop to bring washi tape to Canada back when it was all made in Japan and before it was available here, there and everywhere!

I've written or co-written four craft books, which are available in at least eight languages (most of which I can't read!)

While I was mainly raised in Canada, I was born in the Caribbean and lived in Japan for a number of years after university (where I met and married my Brazilian husband). I feel like my work and aesthetic is greatly influenced by my tropical roots and time immersed in Japan's modern craft culture.

What is the most memorable piece of mail you've sent or received?

I can't think of one particular piece, but I feel like I learn something new from each creative piece of mail I receive and then try to take those ideas and add my own spin to them. 

Thanks to mail I've received over the years, and a good dash of Instagram inspiration, I've definitely been inspired to turn items that would otherwise be headed to the bin (like junk mail envelopes, plastic card sleeves and packaging) into lovely snail mail components. Sometimes looking at ordinary items in a new way can make something really special.

I've also been inspired to use my favourite materials in new and exciting ways - whether that be a clever way of folding paper, a new way to layer washi tapes or even how the placement or choice postage stamps can create a whole different look in a piece of mail art.

What do you love about Pretty Postal?

I love coming up with creative challenges and swaps that we are excited about, and then seeing all the different ways those themes are interpreted by our amazing community of snail mail lovers.

For me personally, I always look at the swaps as an opportunity to try something new and stretch my own mail art skills. It's always a thrill to send a piece of art out into the world, rather than locking it away in a sketchbook somewhere!

It's also wonderful to see all the connections that Pretty Postal creates, both online and off. In our crazy fast-paced world, encouraging mindful offline connection through creative expression feels really special.

Marisa is craft designer, author and pretty mail enthusiast. Connect with her on Instagram @marisaedghill