For many of us, our ‘pen-palling’ journey started and ended…
Letter-writing is wonderful, and nothing beats the feeling of getting home to find a handwritten envelope on your doormat, whatever it looks like. I usually stick the kettle on, then curl up on the sofa with a cuppa to open the envelope and devour the contents (mentally, of course!)
When it comes to the letters I receive, I am more than happy to receive them plain and undecorated, however when it comes to letters I am sending out, I really enjoy jazzing them up a bit. As a creative, I think I relish every single opportunity I come across to give things a bit of a personalised makeover. I enjoy decorating it in a way I think they will like.
Below are a few ideas for you to decorate your letters and envelopes, and brighten up someone’s day. Send some sunshine today!
Especially if the person you are communicating with is a fan of collecting stamps or lives abroad, obtaining some pretty, special edition stamps from the Post Office would be a lovely idea. They recently released a bee themed set (above) to spread awareness of the importance of bees to human survival, and they are gorgeous. Other recent theme releases have included Star Wars and Alice in Wonderland.
Stickers are readily available, come in all manner of shapes and sizes, and can ‘pimp’ your letter in a matter of seconds. How easy is that? Whether the recipient is a fan of cats, flowers, trains, or steampunk, you will no doubt find a pack of stickers to suit. Choosing stickers you know the addressee will love will be sure to make them smile. Your sticker choices don’t have to be of your friend’s favourite thing, but do remember that a dog lover probably won’t appreciate a letter covered in stickers of cat heads!
Not only are a large selection of rubber stamps available from retailers such as Hobbycraft, you can also buy personalised ones from websites like Etsy, or you could even create your own using a large eraser and a craft knife. The possibilities are endless. Remember to check your ink pad hasn’t dried out though; if it has, colour your stamp in with a felt tip until you buy a replacement pad.
Washi tape took 2015 by storm, and it’s showing no signs of becoming less popular. Available in thousands of designs – from solid colours, to glitter, to stripes and spots, to coloured pineapples! Washi is great for framing, so why not try it out on the front of an envelope, around the address.
This is my favourite, because it is entirely unique to the recipient, which will give them a warm, fuzzy feeling inside. I can’t think of anything more wonderful to receive! If you’re arty, go for it. If drawing isn’t a strong skill of yours, a doodle would still be much appreciated – it is about the thought, rather than the ‘quality’ of the result. Drawings can look great on envelopes.
If you have yet to swap photographs with your penpal, you could surprise them with one in your next correspondence. I love adding photos in my envelopes of random aspects of my life – for example, a picture of my cat, or a place I recently visited and loved.
A simple way to decorate your letter is to use a fountain pen to write it. I tend to grab a ballpoint pen when I’m writing a long letter in a bit of a hurry, but occasionally I use a fountain pen, and the result is a much more beautiful letter. Using a fountain pen forces you to write a bit slower, which is very enjoyable when you have the time.
Do you have any other ideas to add? Let us know in the comments below!