Friday, March 24, 2023

Envelope question (and some great cards from a great blogger/trader)

Many years ago I got a 500-pack of envelopes from Costco (Ampad brand). It finally ran out this week as the number of PWE trades I've done over the past couple of years has really taken off. Without giving it too much thought, I ordered a box of 100 envelopes off of Amazon - Quality Park brand. When I got the envelopes, I was surprised and disappointed at how flimsy they were. They basically seem like someone took computer paper and folded it into envelope shape.

I looked online at reviews for Ampad and other brands. The comments seem to be pretty consistent across the board that envelopes are made more cheaply than they used to be. This morning I went to Staples and bought a 100-count box of their brand. They're sturdier than the Quality Park, but still seem a little thinner than the old Ampad.

I was already going to address this in my post today, but it was very timely that I got an envelope with cards in the mail this morning as well. The envelope seemed to be the same sturdiness as my old Ampads, and it was packed the same way I would, in three pockets of a nine-pocket page. And yet:

Not a big rip, and I might not have noticed it if this wasn't on my mind. Since this was packaged the same way I package cards, this brings up two questions I'd appreciate being answered:

1) If you've received a PWE from me, do they ever arrive ripped or damaged? I haven't had a single complaint yet, so I've assumed I'm doing everything OK. Maybe envelopes are getting a little ripped all the time and it's no big deal.

2) What brand envelopes do you use to mail out PWEs?

On a happier note, these cards came from one of my all time bloggers/traders, Penny Sleeve for your Thoughts. And to make it clear, I'm not criticizing Jon in any way - again, this was mailed the same way I've always done it, and the cards themselves were not damaged in any way. Just luck that this envelope arrived right when I'm going through a little envelope dilemma.

The cards Jon sent were all really fantastic, not just in condition but in content.

My 1969 setbuild is quietly getting surprisingly close to completion. These take me to exactly 600 out of the 664 cards in the set. I still need most of the big ones, but Jon crossed another HOFer off the list with Cepeda.

Some more vintage variety, including some big stars on oddball cards. That '71 is one of the best-conditioned cards from that set that I have seen.
Jon noticed my appreciation for the '62 Topps football set, with its great design and action photos. So I was really happy to get a Giants card from the set! Patton was one of the Giants' best all-time defensive backs, with 52 interceptions. If you think the other card is just a simple junk wax dupe, you'd be only half right. It's a blank back! Fun little oddball to hang on to.
Thanks for the cards, Jon!


  1. To my recollection, none of the envelopes you've sent me arrived ripped (maybe wet depending on the weather). I usually just grab envelopes from Wal-mart or Dollar Tree. I'll wrap the 3 pocket strip in paper anyway as added protection.

  2. Good stuff from Penny Sleeves.

    I've never received a damaged PWE from you. I probably can count the number of damaged PWEs I've received ever on one hand. I have no idea what kind of white envelope we use, whatever came from the drug store.

  3. Don't recall ever having an issue with envelopes you've sent me. I use the Mead brand and try to grab them from the dollar store when I'm there. Some traders tape up their envelopes on all sides, so maybe the situation above is why they do so.

  4. I got these a while back and still have plenty. They're pasteboard rather than paper but still cheap. And two card savers fit side by side for more protection.

  5. I get dollar store envelopes. To prevent too much damage from ripping, I'll put a strip of tape along the edges, leaving the corners exposed so that the envelope is still easy to open

  6. Not sure of the brand of envelopes I use... but they are of the security (print on the inside) variety. I tossed the box a while ago. If I had to guess, I'd say they were from Staples or Amazon.

    I also buy the pasteboard envelopes that GCA mentioned in the comments. I like those the best, but I should mention that they aren't perfect either. I sent Dime Box Nick one of those envelopes a week or two ago and it arrived heavily damaged (even with the non-machinable stamp).

    P.S. That 1975 Kelloggs Bench is a nice card. Looks pretty clean. I didn't have an appreciation for that card until the set build, but those suckers go for big money in nice condition.

  7. This is why I also wrap the cards in cardboard. I get my envelopes from Walmart. They're thin, but pretty much everywhere else's are too.