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As a part of letter-writing month, we wouldn’t want to forget the envelopes! After all, that’s the first thing your friend will see when they open their mailbox. You could absolutely send a plain envelope and no one is going to begrudge you that (after all, it’s REAL MAIL!) but I thought I’d compile five fun ideas along with some inspiration from a couple of amazing artists that will help you in your quest to decorate envelopes this month.
To start, if you really want to be make your envelope “perfect”, you can carefully open it all the way up, decorate, and then tape it back together. I didn’t do that with any of the envelopes pictured, though. It was just fun to embellish them as is.
Five Fun Ways to Decorate Envelopes
Pull out the acrylics. In the main image for this post, many of the decorated envelopes were painted with acrylics. It’s something I’ve never tried before and I have no idea why because it’s so much fun!
Make sure you don’t lay the paint on too thick as it could make the envelopes warp. You can layer the paint but allow it to dry in between layers. You can also write over the dried paint with pens when you’re finished if you want to add additional embellishments. Use sponge or potato stamps to make a repeating pattern. These painted envelopes from Lucy Halcomb are so cute!
Enlist your kids (or your friend’s kids!) I didn’t intend to enlist my daughter to decorate envelopes for this challenge but I admittedly left the envelopes I was decorating out one day and well, she decided to help me out. They were really cute so I decided to add them to the list of fun ways to decorate. Kids tend to go for it when they’re embellishing which is nice. :) Pull out the pens, stickers, and glitter glue and let them go for it!
Sharpie fun. Sharpies come in so many awesome colors now (though I still steer automatically to black time and again.) Use a Sharpie to draw a box around your friend’s name and address or go all out and decorate the whole envelope like the amazing Helen Dardik does here.
Magazines are forever. Making an envelope is super simple—just carefully open an envelope you already have and use it as a template to trace onto whatever paper you want to use. That said, my sister and I used to use magazine ads as envelopes when I was away at college. I kept every one she sent me because they’re so awesome. You could also use wrapping paper, a page from an old book, or copy paper that you’ve decorated.
Gel pens + colored pencils. Have I mentioned before how much I love Sakura’s Gelly Roll pens? (I think I spec them in every other tutorial . . . ) Anyway, I made the polka dot envelope above with a gel pen and colored pencils. It was so simple and I love how it turned out. I also used white and black gel pens to decorate the “hello there” envelope (acrylic was used in the background.)