09 August, 2006

Enveloping Your Style

I don’t quite know what got me thinking about envelopes the other day, but here I was looking at some perfectly preppy paper that I fell in love with at the stationary store, and I started thinking about how pretty it would look if I made it into a personalized envelope. Now, this is something I used to do quite a lot of several years ago, and in fact, when Mr. Monogram and I were engaged (YIKES! Was that really 9 years ago?), I hand made every single envelope for the hotel accommodations and activities to be sent to our out of town guests. It was adorable! What I did was to make a Black & white collage out of some of our favorite pictures of us on a legal size piece of paper. Then I took it to Office Depot to have them do color copies of how ever many out of town guests I had (which was a lot because, well, I had a big wedding and most of our family is in Boston and PA). And when I received the color copies back, I took my envelope template and hand made the personalized envelopes in the letter size. I then folded our letter with all the hotel accommodation info, and slipped it neatly inside, and sealed the envelopes with my printed up labels. Here’s a little secret that you may or may not know. If you have a particularly pretty envelope, such as our envelopes that were made out of pictures that I did not want to cover up with a label, the USPS allows you to affix your stamp and recipient’s address info on the back side of your envelope and will still make sure it safely gets to your destination. Yes, to answer your question, even the back side of my envelopes had pictures too, but the larger surface was the front so I didn’t want to take away from that with my label. Everyone really loved it! Just think how cute it would be to do some similar envelopes for your guests if you were throwing a birthday party of some kind (like a 30th or 40th), or even an Anniversary party and you could even just do one large photo for the front of your envelope and have it photocopied, and then have your envelope made from that? Cute, right? And no, you don’t have to just do a photo envelope as I did for those accommodation letters. You can also make them out of really pretty paper as I saw the other day, where at finer stationary stores they sell in large squares and the paper is a nice thick, high quality paper. Heck, you can even use scrap booking paper if you’d like! Or what about making vellum envelopes for your invitations or cute folded note cards? Seriously, you get as creative as you want with this, and use vintage magazine ads, vintage sheet music too, or wallpaper even! Why not get some cute paper, and do a large monogram in what will be the front and center of your envelope? Seriously, the possibilities are endless.
So here’s how you do it. I used to have this fabulous envelope-making kit with a template that made all the different sizes of envelopes from one template, but unfortunately, they aren’t making it anymore. But I found a great selection of envelope templates by Kreate-a-lope, over at a store called Green Sneakers, so go check that out. I also noticed this same brand at Hobby Lobby yesterday too. Now, if you just want a small note card enclosure template, then I found one you can actually print online here. But if you aren’t feeling especially patient and you think you might want to get going on this immediately, go grab an envelope (any envelope that’s the shape and size you want to use), and carefully open it up. As a side note, if it’s particularly sticky and won’t come apart without ripping, boil some water on the stove and hold it over the steam, and the steam will undo the seal. Voila! You’ve got your own envelope template and all you have to do is trace around it, cut it out, use a ruler to make a crisp edge to fold the sides in, glue the sides and bottom together, and it’s done. You can see from my picture how I used an existing envelope as a template. It doesn’t get any easier than that! Another perfectly preppy idea and you know I think that’s a very “good thing!”
One more thing. If you are looking for some decorative cute envlopes such as these that I made, that you'd like to pair with your own little note cards, then I somehow stumbled upon Etsy, an online shop to "...buy and sell things handmade." How fantstic! And while you can find anything here from hand made jewlry, art, paper, etc, I was also able to find some cute envelope sets such as these, that you can purchse for under $4 for a set. Now I'm not saying I'd want to use this as my everyday note card or note card envlopes as I don't really think that's very appropriate, but I do think they are very cute and appropriate if you're sending a quick note to the teacher at school, or dropping a note in a neighbors mailbox. So go check it out and in the search bar at the top, just type in "Stationary" or "Hand Made Envelopes" and you'll find lots of great options to give you that personalized touch, but without getting any paper cuts on your own hands!


Alyson said...

Those are so cute! I would have never thought to do handmade envelopes. Keep it up!

Pink Cupcakes said...

Thats so funny I laughed when I saw this post because I did exactly this the other day I had some amazingly cute preppy paper - green and pink polkadots and all sorts and I made envelopes! Great minds think alike!

Anonymous said...

could you write in paragraphs, or space it out? i love your blog but i go cross-eyed reading it!