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For the love of snail mail- Serena from China

- Hi Serena, and welcome! Tell us a little more about yourself!
Chinese Name: Sun Jiawei
English Name: Serena Sun

I was born in Mainland China and have been living in HK for almost seven years. I am working in a Marine Insurance & Legal Consultants, helping the clients (ship-owners) to negotiate with insurers to obtain best arrangement of cover for ships. 

- How did you first get into snail mail and writing pen pals?
I enjoy crafting and love art since young. I started using TN to record my memory and daily life since last May. As a TN HK user, I attended several gatherings and met a lot of friends who have same interests, including Patrick Ng and Pooi Chan (She was invited to a TN gathering in HK as a guest speaker). Pooi gave us some little gifts. I really inspired by her speech and decided to prepare something for her as a return. So I sent a mail to her. Besides, I love sending postcards to my family and friends during traveling and have kept doing this for years.

- First Mail -

- And how long have you been sending snail mail and writing your pen pals?
From early December 2015. 

- What do you like most about having a pen pal?
We can share inspirations, enjoy mail art, exchange ideas and mutual life stories. Reading letters and crafting mails just make me happy and relax. 

- How many pen pals do you currently have, and where are they from?
Around nine, mainly are five, only do postcards swapping for others, from Taiwan, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore. 

- How did you find or come across your pen pals?

- How often do you find yourself writing them?
One or two months

- If you can, how would you describe your snail mail style?
Mostly vintage style, not good at Chinese style (not this type), I also have some craftwork in simple fresh style.

- Mail I made (with items I love to send), vintage style -

- Mail I made, mixed style? Fresh+Vintage -

- Postcards in simple fresh style I made -

- What are some things you enjoy sending?
Short letters, ephemera (vintage labels/cards, old tickets), and handmade cards/postcards

- What are some things that you enjoy receiving?
Ephemera (vintage postcards/letters/tickets), pretty hand-writing letters, handmade cards/postcards (actually all handmade things) 

- What have been some of the most memorable letters, packages or mail you've received?
A mail with handmade card and birthday gifts, very surprise

- When is the best time for you to put together your snail mail?
Once I feel inspired, I will make a draft picture or write a memo. I need to work in day time, so mostly I do it in the evenings and weekends. 

- Writing down inspiration on Traveler's Notebook -

- Have you met any of your pen pals in person?
Yes, I met one in HK last month and will meet another one soon this month.

- Other than sending lovely snail mail to friends, do you have any other hobbies & interests that you enjoy?
Yes, a lot. Playing piano, traveling, reading, hiking, going to a concert or museum, watching British/American crime drama (like Bones, Sherlock and etc.).


To see more of Serena's beautiful mail crafts, be sure to check out her Instagram gallery: @sjwsun

Read more on past snail mail lovin' guests here.

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