Inchies: 5 easy ways to pack and mail them


ATC Guru
Feb 21, 2008
Dix, IL
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Mailing Inchies

This seems to be a common question in all inchie swaps so I thought I'd create a sticky IN the Mail Art Swap area.

There are several different ways inchies can be safely mailed and none of them are incorrect it just depends on your personal preference. The only thing you want to make sure NOT to do is permanently seal them onto a background. Inchie swaps should swap out individually so you received inchies from multiple players and not all from one person.

You also want to MAKE SURE to put at least your AFA username on the back of the inchie!!! If you're able to fit more and want to, that's fine, but never ever send in artwork for a swap that doesn't have your username on the back of each individual piece. (unless specified otherwise by the hostess for that particular swap...)

Here are 5 different ways to mail them (in no particular order... well, alphabetically i suppose lol)

1. Card Method

Using a blank ATC card, you can individually tape each inchie onto the card. make sure to use LOW TACK tape like washi tape to do it though or it can rip the back of the inchie card when the hostess removes it for swapping. Alternatively, you might be able to take regular tape and lower the tackiness by placing it on some fabric (your shirt?) a couple times. The fibers from the fabric should cover some of the tape and make it less sticky. You want it just sticky enough to hold your inchie in place.

card method.jpg

Once the inchies are on the blank ATC, you can then slide it into a penny sleeve like you would an ATC. Then mail them like ATCs.

2. Inchie Mailer Method

This one is a bit trickier and some hosts may not want to have to keep track of it to mail it back to you, but it is a nice one that could potentially be used multiple times. (it can make things thicker and heavier though so keep that in mind when sending postage for your swap.)

Take a blank ATC and use any type of tape you want. You'll fold about 1/3 of the tape over onto itself and the remaining sticky third sticks to the card. This makes little "shelves" your inchies can fit into. Then the whole thing can be slid into a penny sleeve and mailed like an ATC.

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3. Loose Method

This method is best used for flat HD/HP inchies and for a smaller amount. Collaged or thicker Inchies will bunch up and make the envelope lumpy and could possibly tear and get stuck in the postal machines. (we know how much they like eating our envies ;) lol)

Basically you just put the inchies in a penny sleeve and seal the end of the sleeve by folding it over or taping the end shut. Personally I don't use this method much, but it works very well for some people.

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4. Staple Method

This is a very commonly used method and is very effective. Just use a penny sleeve and put them in one at a time and separate them with staples. Keeps them from bunching up like in the loose method and doesn't use tape.

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However I highly recommend you wrap a piece of paper around it to prevent the staples from poking through the envie. I've had them poke through and the envelope get ripped because of it.

5. Tape Method

This is my personal favorite method and one that I typically use when mailing out returns for inchie swaps. As in the Card Method, you'll want a low tack tape. Line them up 2x3 and put a piece of washi tape or other low tack tape on the back. It holds 6 together very well and can be slid into an ATC penny sleeve and even leaves enough room to fold over the top of the penny sleeve if desired.

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Regardless of how you choose to mail your inchies, protect them while mailing. :wubclub:

(tips for Moos... the Card Method, Staple Method or Tape Method all work great with Moos as well ;) )
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