make your own: cardboard envelope templates.

November 22, 2021

Making your own envelope is as simple as cutting a piece of paper into the right shape and gluing down the edges. A few years ago, Rose and I shared our kid art envelopes project, which gives art that might otherwise land directly in the recycling bin a second life as something new and useful. Kid art envelopes are sure to be cherished by the grandparents, yes, but honestly chic enough to give just about anyone.

Now, here’s some encouragement to make the process even simpler by growing a small collection of cardboard envelope templates made from any favorite envelopes you stumble across.

The next time you come across an envelope in a shape you love, open it up carefully, trace it onto a piece of old cardboard, and cut the traced shape from the cardboard.

The slight heft of the cardboard makes for much easier tracing and having the template on hand means always being able to make just the envelope you’d like from whatever papers you have on hand.

Most envelopes are pretty self explanatory, but feel free to trace lines on the template to help you remember where the folds go.

Punch a hole in the top, string a few together, and set yourself up for a season of quick and easy envelope making. If you have favorite gift tags, make templates from those too!

Don’t have kid art on hand? Envelopes can be made from all sorts of sturdy, foldable paper including the pages of old books, notebooks, magazines, hand-stamped paper, recycled paper gift bags, wallpapers, homemade papers, marbled papers, et cetera! Let your imagination and your paper stash be your guide.

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3 Comments

  • Reply Laura November 22, 2021 at 6:45 pm

    I love this idea! I have a stash of pretty papers that I had hoped to use for wrapping, but I’m finding are too small for most gifts. This feels like the perfect small win for when you’re feeling tired but want to accomplish a little something.

  • Reply Julie November 22, 2021 at 9:08 pm

    This series is making me so happy. Thank you.

    What kind of glue do you use?

  • Reply Mackenzie November 23, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    Unrelated (sort of) to your post but I just wanted to tell you that I have recently reread your book and it is so helpful! I found that although I am a simple living enthusiast and a tried-and-true minimalist, the past year and a half brought in a lot of unwanted stuff. Times have been stressful and purchases that really shouldn’t have been purchased made their way into my apartment and the clutter was driving me crazy. Couple that with the upcoming holidays and it seemed like a recipe for stuffocation. I have gotten rid of a lot of stuff so far and I just wanted to say thank you for your book and your tips that I turn to again and again for inspiration 🙂

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