Snail Mail by Michelle Mackintosh – Book Review


After recently rediscovering the joys of sending and receiving correspondence the old fashioned way via ‘snail mail’, I was delighted to receive a copy of Michelle Mackintosh’s new book Snail Mail – Rediscovering the art and craft of handmade correspondence.

Inspired by Japanese stationery and letter-writing culture, Michelle Mackintosh reveals the charm of the handwritten letter, personalised parcels and handcrafted stationery, as well as showing us how to add a little of this flair to our digital communications.

Michelle Mackintosh’s new book Snail Mail

If you love the idea of sending letters and putting together care packages, this book is a trove of inspiration, gorgeous imagery and colourful mail inspired craft.

Teaching us to get the most from our post, Michelle shows us how we can improve our handwriting, craft the perfect letter and the lost art of manners, make our own paper, envelopes, wax seals and pressed flowers, put together care packages for loved ones who need a bit of TLC, romance someone the old-school way, and craft beautiful mail art for any occasion. Oh and did I mention, templates and stickers!



It also contains all the amazing envelopes and letters she received through he PO BOX 26 project, where letter writers from all over the world (including me) contributed mail art to be included in the book.

snail mail mail art

snail mail mail art

But this isn’t just a craft book, it shares personal stories (which are truly heartfelt), historical letters, and advice on etiquette and grammar.
The book itself is a gorgeously tactile experience with an embossed hard cover and pages that evoke the edges of old fashioned air mail envelopes.

cat letterbox

I really like this practical and inspirational book, and I think you’ll like it too. You can buy your own copy here

Snail Mail by Michelle Mackintosh, published by Hardie Grant Books


This post contains affiliate links


  • Kay says:

    Hi Cintia, the most exciting thing that I received by snail mail was a hand made fabric postcard that set me on a journey of making them and sending them myself, so much fun! So I have sent one to you as well. Keep your eyes peeled! Kay

  • DAWN RENEE' says:

    Last year at Christmas, I received the most wonderful paper handmade ornaments all the way from Scottland from a wonderful person I met on Facebook. I treasure them and the person I have never met in person that sent them to me. 🙂

  • JULIE DUNCAN says:

    When I moved here to the country, I kept getting little surprises in my letterbox. Not mail with handmade, quirky envelopes and vibrant stamps but lovely all the same… small, brown paper bags filled with home-grown goodies such as blueberries, cherry tomatoes, and plums. All from our elderly neighbours who are keen gardeners.

  • Jennifer Crewe says:

    One of the nicest surprises was a lovely printed card announcing the regency of my daughter in law. They didn’t expect to be able to conceive so it was an amazing wonderful surprise. 9 months later a lovely grandson was born.

    I am sending a postcard to you from south west W.A.

  • Gail Beam says:

    Love to send cards to celebrate special occasions. They seem so much more personal than emails . I prefer to talk to people over the phone rather than send texts, too.

  • Tracy Snyder says:

    Love the good ol’ USPS! I always send cards through the mail and keep promising myself that I will start mailing letters again instead of email. There is something so special about receiving that letter in the mail and saving it to read again at a later time.

  • Ros says:

    Hello Cintia, what a lovely book and giveaway.
    My favourite mail surprise(s) were the letters and cards from well-wishers after the birth of our son after many years and many tears. Many of whom were from people I barely knew, and others from a lifetime ago. Who knew one little man could reconnect so many.

  • Krista says:

    My favourite piece of mail so far has been an anonymous package of ‘kindness’ – it was posted to my workplace, and contained a teeny little box full of sweet affirmation cards. It totally made my day – especially because it inspired me to ‘pay it forward’ and keep the anonymous package sending going, in the hopes of brightening someone else’s day!
    I love love love receiving snail mail, so I will post you one of my ‘Secret Garden’ postcards which have been hand coloured in by me – mostly while I should have been studying haha 🙂

  • Hana says:

    Hi Cintia – that book looks amazing! I’ve just signed up my daughters for a kids mail swap – so reading about Michelle’s book is very timely! I don’t know that it is completely surprising but I participated in a few handmade Christmas ornament swaps for a few years and it was always exciting to receive the handmade ornaments in the mail! Also, my Mum lives in China and she often sends surprise boxes home to us – which is always super-exciting! I’ll send you a postcard too this week – would love to win the book! xo

  • Diana says:

    One of the nicest things received by post was a package of photos of my husband as child, his family, some of them being quite old. We were not expecting them but his stepmother had found them and put together this package of family history for us.

  • sherry g. says:

    My favorite mail is not even mail that was sent to me, but a collection of post cards that had belonged to my Grandmother that I inherited from her. They are filled with notes from my Mom, her sister and other family members. My grandmother, my mom and her sister have all passed on, and it is such fun to look at the post cards and read all their notes to eachother.

  • Samantha says:

    Most surprising? When I was seven years old I sent off for a Barbie doll using a coupon from the back of a toothpaste box- it was the BEST mail!!!

  • Jessica Green says:

    I’m still waiting for my biggest surprise! Maybe this book! Pretty please!

  • Lois Stephens says:

    Hi Cintia
    I buy artists cards and other interesting handcrafted or printed cards when I travel – I usually have someone in mind when I buy them. It’s great to be able to go to my card box for a special birthday card or just a ‘thinking of you card’ to send. Thanks for the opportunity to enter.

  • Brigitte says:

    I remember living in England and receiving the most beautiful “care package” from my gorgeous sister and Nana of clothes, and all things Australian. It was the most wonderful surprise and just what I needed leading up to a Christmas without family. I didn’t even know care packages existed until I got one.

    I had plans of starting little hand made packages about 4 weeks ago and then my computer died so I’ve been flat out restoring everything and catching up on work over the last 4 weeks in between looking after my little girl. It’s meant many 2am finishes. I’m happy to say that this morning on waking, we sat and started some “combined” background painting (my 3.5 year old daughter and my collaboration) on some water colour paper that we’re going to add little embellishments and photos to for my mother in law who’s got breast cancer. It’s my mission to send her photos in the most unusual way that she could imagine. She’s not really into technology so will totally appreciate the work from her gorgeous grand daughter that she never gets to see … that isn’t via email.

  • Mary Ann O'Brien says:

    So out of practice writing letters. Would love this book!!!

  • Kathy h says:

    The most surprising Mail I received was a letter from my son when he was away at camp. Never thought he would think of it.

  • So many lovely stories! Keep ’em coming!

  • Judy Cornell says:

    The most surprising thing I ever got is the mail was a two-thousand dollar check from the bank that was really mine to keep. Go figure.

  • Sarah says:

    I always loved getting letters in the mail from my grandmothers, one in England and one in South Australia. They would include letters in their beautiful handwriting and anything they thought I might like from recipes to comic strips. I miss them greatly.

  • sam says:

    When I moved here to the country, I kept getting little surprises in my letterbox. Not mail with handmade, quirky envelopes and vibrant stamps but lovely all the same… small, brown paper bags filled with home-grown goodies such as blueberries, cherry tomatoes, and plums. All from our elderly neighbours who are keen gardeners.

  • Terri Betz says:

    I once received a Salamander with a note to take care off him! My Granddaughter brightens my old world! I must go find out about Postcrossing! I adore getting mail, but don’t really get any! Thanks for the chances at an awesome book! Happy Tax Day! 🙂

  • Terri Watson says:

    A letter from my English pen pal. I love getting mail and receiving what she has sent me. It is a surprise every time. It’s Exciting. She also gets the same excitement when she gets mine. We send letters, homemade cards/ embellishments and small gifts and inside an envelope. So you never know what is going to be inside.

    Sending you a postcard too……

  • Sarah Helene says:

    Surprising post cards came from my older son whenever he travels alone, with guy friends and his younger brother mailed from cities in countries around the world including India, Thailand, Canada, Mexico, Spain –all signed, Love to you, Mom! Sarah in Minneapolis, MN. USA

  • Sarah Helene says:

    Also post cards from Portugal, Germany, Austria, Switzerland & Japan! Sarah

  • Carina says:

    I received a save the date note. Who doesn’t love a wedding and the anticipation associated with wedding. The flip side of the save the note was full of gold shiny glitter – it really did make my day – I even ‘instagramed’ it. Oh and am sending you a little postcard by snail mail.

  • Cyndie says:

    I wish a letter from my dad could arrive in my letter box. We live 16,000 km away and are not really close but I wish he would write to me and tell he misses me.

    • Brigitte says:

      Cyndie, have you thought about sending your Dad something that might mean a lot to him? he’d get a real buzz from that and know you at least care enough to send something to him … Just a thought … It just might mean that he gets an idea of something to send to you.

  • Di says:

    Expanda foam the most surprising. And not a full spray can to be used at a later date, but some little buggers literally filled our letterbox cavity with yellow expanda foam. Boy was it a pain in the bum to remove.

  • DIANA O says:

    A Christmas card, in July and I know my dear old Nan posted it early in December because my sister was with her at the time. Surprising that Australia Post could misplace it, or hold onto it for such a period of time and not be accountable in any way, shape or form.

  • Jennifer B. says:

    I hit the SUBMIT button on a UK website.

    Three weeks later a large envelope arrived in the snail mail… my great uncle’s navy records. Fourteen pages of fascination from 1875, jam-packed with all manner of surprising information!!!

  • Nanna Chel says:

    Well, I received a lovely surprise in the mail today. I mentioned on a forum I belong to that I have been unable to buy sock yarn here in town so one of the other kind members sent me a couple of balls by Express Mail so that I could get started on learning how to knit my first pair of socks. I got such a nice surprise!

  • Renee Ballantyne says:

    I received a letter saying I won a new Holden Calais….no it wasn’t a hoax which was the best part!!

  • Ange says:

    Besides snails I found a letter I sent to myself five years before. A friend held it for me and sent it on the date I wrote it. I was surprised, confused (I had forgotten) and proud how far I had come.

  • Terri w says:

    Okay Who’s the lucky winners? My crafty bestie bought this and it is awesome. Going to buy myself one too.

  • Giveaway now closed – Thanks for your comments

  • winners are M. Kneipp Vic, and D.Donato Vic. Winner have been contacted.

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