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I love surprises in the mail. When I subscribed to Lost Crates, I enjoyed “forgetting” my quarterly subscriptions and finding a lovely box of stationery in my mailbox every few months. Well, I thought I had cancelled my Birchbox subscription in October, but evidently not.

Surprise!

Here’s an November Birchbox!

The joy of trying out new samples trumped any irk I might’ve felt for not cancelling. Here’s what I got:

Chuao Chocolatier Assorted ChocoPod
I thought my snack was going to be a potato chip smothered with chocolate. Nope! It was a delicious blend of chocolate and potato chip powder, into a crunchy treat (similar in texture to the innards of a KitKat bar).
Chuao Chip

Miracle Skin Transformer Vanish Instant Imperfection Corrector
The product has a silky texture. I don’t think I’m going to be using it much.
Skin Vanish Corrector

stila all over shimmer liquid luminizer try-me-set
Perhaps I was expecting face glitter, but I saw no difference with this on. Also, no one’s skin “shimmers” naturally. I’m not a fan of processed beauty.
Stila Shimmer Liquid

Atelier Cologne Rose Anonyme Petite Cologne Absolue
The Rose Anonyme perfume sample came with a stunning film noir photo-card. Unfortunately, the scent was not as stunning. My skin is not a fan of incense, oud, and patchouli. All I got was wafts of not-so-good dried, spiced herb smell. Despite not behaving well on its own, it layered quite nicely with Blood Bath by Delightful Rot.
Rose Anonyme
Oscar Blandi Pronto Texture & Volume Spray Travel Size
I now finally know how people get their hair to stay in awkward configurations! It’s all about the hair spray! I’ve never used hairspray before, and this one was a pretty good experience.
Oscar Hair Spray
As I said before, I’m not quite a part of Birchbox’s target demographic. Being surprised by this box was super fun, but I finally decided to cancel (for real this time). Thanks for the good time, Birchbox!

Unfortunately, Lost Crates is on a long indeterminate hiatus. They sent me their last Petite Stationery crate at the beginning of October. It was their best one yet.

paperback writer
This small, brown notebook is perfect for jotting down notes. It’s super handy, on par with French Shirt Notebook by Pocket Dept from April.

Paperback Notebook

Action Cahier by Action Method
The Action Cahier is an oddball. Its no-nonsense black cover conceals the colorful pages inside. On one side of the page is a matrix of dots; the other, beige and teal stripes. I’m not sure how to work the Action Cahier yet, but I’m sure it’ll help me become more productive.
Action Cahier
French Paper Notebook
Small with gorgeous patterned covers, these notebooks are the reason why I became interested in stationery. They’re so perfect for everything. I have to think hard to fill them with appropriately awesome things.
French Paper Notebook
Lost Crates provided such wonderful surprises over the past year. Through them I became acquainted with so many quaint companies. I am a little sad to see them go, and hope they will come back one day.

Full of quaint charm, my July Lost Crate came in a paper-bag-brown cardboard box embellished with a smudged Air Mail stamp.

In contained some super nifty goods:

Carnet by Banditapple
Sized like a tall address book, my Carnet, upon opening, gave came this wonderful paper aroma, dying for the press of a inky pen. Cute golden frogs smiled from the cover, beckoning for some silly adventure to grace its lined pages.
carnet
I can’t wait to fill it once I get some inky pens and silly adventure.

0.25km Notebook by Couple D’Idees
I loved this notebook’s idea of looking back, after a bout of writer’s inspiration, and seeing words stringing a distance of quarter kilometer. With a sunny yellow cover, and healthily spaced lines, my 0.25km Notebook is quite the candidate for my next fun with words.

0.25km

QWERTY pencils by Wild and Wolf
These QUERTY pencils were my favorite! The cardboard tube case was beautifully embellished with typewriter imagery, complete with a typewriter key for a lid. The pencils themselves, had the words “All work no play makes Jack a dull boy” pressed into their side. Love!
QWERTY
My July Lost Crate was awesome. I was pleasantly surprised that they changed the packaging from Aprils’. It really enhanced the experience. If Lost Crates keep up their delectable stationary picks, they’d be selling out all the time like they did this month.

I can’t wait for my next Lost Crate!

Lost Crates is definitely an adventure! Tossed about the seas of designery goodness, Lost Crates deliver a small box of curated goods to your doorsteps.
Lost Crates
The crates come in many different flavors, one of which is stationery.

I love stationery! I love mail, and I certainly love surprises.
Why didn’t I jump on this in the first place? Oh right, the price.

Shelling out $38 every month for stationery is a bit much.
Fortunately, last week, they announced their Petite Stationery box for half the price!

I seized the opportunity. I’m not a pen-and-paper writer, so I signed up for the quarterly subscription. I’ll surely forget about it months from now, and doubly surprise myself.

Today, my first Lost Crate came in the mail.

Initially, I was a bit disappointed. From the reviews I’ve seen, the goods came in a
box, which played into the mystique of the Lost Crates. Sadly, my Petite Stationery came in a far less charming padded envelope.
envelope
Tearing into the envelope revealed April’s offerings: a seven-year pen, a small notebook, and a packet of wine-themed letterpress tags. I must confess, I spoiled my surprise by peaking inside the crate on the website. However, what I received is very different from what I imagined.

I got the following:

French Shirt Notebook by Pocket Dept.
It’s featured a sturdy cover and unlined pages. It was surprising tiny, yet surprisingly useful. I don’t fancy unlined pages, but having something small and portable to jot notes in is very pleasant. I’ve come to like this pocket pal.
Dept De Poche
Seven Year Pen – Ciao by Seltzer Goods
I like my pens rollerball tipped with nice grippy sides. This pen was definitely not my usual.
Ciao had a novel twist mechanism, and wrote pretty smoothly.
Unfortunately, it was a little too thick for my tiny hands to grip comfortably.
Though, I did love the concept of reducing the number of discarded pens.
Very eco-friendly!
Ciao
Wine Tags by OrangeBeautiful
When I saw this online, I thought to myself, “What am I going to do with wine tags?”
I didn’t have a collection of Merlot aging on some shelf.
However, when my crate arrived, these tags became my favorite of this bunch!
They were tiny, greeting cards, exquisitely pressed on beautiful paper.
I liked them a lot!
Wine Tags
Surprise would be a good one-word summary to my first Lost Crate experience. Even though I’m not head-over-heels with the products (except the wine tags), I’m glad I discovered unbeknown brands. I’m looking forward to my next Lost Crate, and no peaking this time.