I have long admired (and coveted!) the beautiful handmade books produced by Kaija of Paperiaarre, so when I realised my current sketchbook was nearing its end I decided to splash out on one – a beautiful Coptic bound journal in charcoal linen. As (my) good fortune would have it I happened to be Kaija’s 300th customer on Etsy, and as an unexpected bonus also received one of her magical and mysterious ‘Matchbox letters’.

Matchbox letter (made by Kaija - Paperiaarre)

Matchbox letter (made by Kaija - Paperiaarre)

Matchbox letter (made by Kaija - Paperiaarre)

I cannot read the letter, which is in Finnish, but that’s part of its enigmatic appeal (and Kaija assures me there’s nothing filthy or crazy in it :)

Matchbox letter (made by Kaija - Paperiaarre)

And I am so drawn to the few tiny grains of black sand that were no doubt hiding-out in the shell (and probably have been for years!). They let me feel closer to an unknown beach on a distant archipelago I will perhaps never visit…

Matchbox letter (made by Kaija - Paperiaarre)

It’s a very beautiful and enchanting object!

Kaija has an amazing Flickr set of many of the matchbox letters she has made here – do yourself a favour and check ’em out! They’re all so beautiful and intriguing…