Monday, May 9, 2016

Penpal of the Week #183


As I’m sitting here in the office today, I am over the moon impressed with my wife’s design work for this upcoming month’s edition of the La Papierre SSS. Many of the new designs will be making a home in my all time top 10 La Papierre favorites! Did you know that there are now subscription plans that come with matching envelopes?


And now, I have the pleasure of introducing you to an artistically creative letter writer… Nina in Croatia is our Penpal of the Week!


Please tell us about you!

My name is Nina (Bančetović), I’m 37 and at the moment I work as a babysitter. It gives me a chance to get to know the little girl that I’m taking care of and it also reminds me of some inner parts of me. I love creating paper stuff like notebooks, gift tags, envelopes and, when I feel confident enough, even do some bookart. I also love to dance (still feel shy) and to take photos.







Describe your personality in 10 words!

Talkative but shy. In love with movement. Adore writing. Curious.


How long have you been penpalling? How did you first start? Tell us about your first penpal!

I started when I was 10/11 with my best friend (then). We exchanged letters often. There was a long pause after high school and I started again 8 years ago, after letting go of my job as a copywriter and moved to Lisbon, Portugal with my former boyfriend. I was looking for something important to me and letters showed up again.



Writing on a friend’s terrace.


How many penpals do you have now and where are they from?

20 – 25. One third are people from Croatia. Others are mostly from Europe (Greece, France, UK, Italy, Portugal, Belgium) and few from Australia, USA and Brasil.



I love the sea.


What are your favorite topics to discuss in letters?

I have no favorite topic, it all depends on a person. I love to read about what’s important to my penpal and to write about what’s important to me at the moment. It changes. But usually it starts with private life, hobbies, travels, books and then the conversation grows.



A letter.


What are you looking for in a penpal?

To be what they are, to share themselves and their experiences. Passion, honesty, curiosity.



Another letter – a long one.


What do you like the most about penpalling?

It’s like a little precious book someone wrote just for you. Or a book you wrote to someone. It connects, slows everything down to the right rhythm and makes me share myself back. It’s always a win – win. Either I enjoy writing or I enjoy reading. There are so many ways you can be creative in a letter and then you share it with someone.



My handwriting.


In what language(s) do you correspond?

English and Croatian.


What are some of your habits in regards to letter writing?

I love writing in a bar and I usually write long letters. Most of the time I drink something while writing and I take a lot of photos of letters, envelopes that I make.



I use many different papers.


Has anything strange/funny ever happened to you since you’ve been penpalling?

I opened an idea to write many letters to the unknown people so I had a personal project (took me a year to finish it) “1000 letters”. I made envelopes, wrote messages, made attachments and shared them around.


I also organised group writing letters in a bar so we would meet every Tuesday in the same bar (for 6 months) and write letters together, as a game or with some funny tasks.


And there was a short period when I used my wooden dwarf named Kika to write letters to children. They responded and those were wonderful.



Some envelopes I made.


Have you met any of your penpals?

Just those that live in Zagreb. But I’d be glad to meet them all eventually. They are all beautiful and interesting people.



Paper ships.


Are you currently looking for more penpals?

No, but if anybody feels connected or interested, they are more than welcome.


Thank you Nina!


Many thanks to those of you who ordered spring stationery! We’ve had a few warmer days and I think the apples are starting their process on the tree in our backyard. I took a photo of the blooms that are just beginning to form. It’s pretty cool that something like this will turn into fruit!



Posted under Penpal Interviews

4 Responses to “Penpal of the Week #183”

  1. You sound like one amazing woman, Nina!

  2. love love this blog/website. so happy I found it… the post about the penpal of the week!!! I have been penpaling for almost 30 yrs.

  3. Pozdrav Nina,
    Zovem se Jana. Ja sam iz Njemačke.
    Drago mi je što smo se upoznali.
    Osjećam srodnu dušu u vama.
    Možda želite da mi pisati?
    Ne mogu hrvatski, ali se trudim.
    Mogu govoriti njemački, engleski i ruski.
    Sretan dan.
    Lijepi pozdrav

  4. Love all the pictures!


My name is Julie and I'm 37.
I'm French Canadian and fell
in love with an American,
so I'm now living in Vermont
with my wife.

I write letters, I love stationery and I have a handwriting fetish. I often eat sushi, still feel like I'm 16 and only wear skirts & dresses (with colorful tights when it's cold).

I'm happier with a mind full of ideas, a mailbox full of letters from my penpals, a shop full of stationery, a house full of pens and a day full of hugs.

Read my Top 10 Quirks here.

This is me with my wife,
Denise. We met through the
League of Extraordinary
Penpals and are living
happily ever after in the
Stationery Kingdom.

Denise blogs here too and is
the one in charge of the
social media: Facebook,
Twitter and Pinterest.

She's 40 years old,
from South Dakota,
and in love with me, washi
tape & imperial rolls.

Send your penpal ad & top 10 quirks to:

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