Friday, 12 July 2013

DIY Tutorial: Personalised Stationary - Part 2

Part 2: How to make bespoke envelopes 

As promised, this is the second part to the tutorial on how to make your own personalised stationary set. In this tutorial I will show you how to make your own envelopes....when you get the hang of it you will find it quite addictive and won't be buying boring office envelopes again!
Things you will need:

1.  Your choice of paper for the envelope, I have chosen maps.
2. The size of card that you want the envelope to fit 
3. A Ruler
4. A good rubber and pencil
5. Glue - A glue stick works best otherwise the paper gets too wet
6. Craft Scissors

I forgot one thing on the photo, you will need a piece of blank, scrap paper to make your template from! 

Getting the size of your envelope right

It seems obvious, but there's no point making envelopes if nothing will fit in them. If you're not doing a complete project like this and just want to make some envelopes for future use, find a birthday card or a piece of paper from a standard size notebook so you know what size they are rather than guessing measurements. 

For this project, take your notecard and place it in the middle of the paper and fold all around until you end up with a grid like this.

Creating the envelope shape

Measure each of your sections between the folds and mark the middle. Now draw a line from the corner to your new marker. Do this all the way around so you have 1 square in the middle and 4 triangles on the outside.

Cutting it into shape

when you've finished drawing all of your lines, start cutting around the edge and folding them in. The top photo above shows you the 3 bottom edges folded and the bottom one shows you what it needs to look like at the end of this stage. Hopefully you can see it taking shape now!


The envelope as you have it probably doesn't look quite right because you're used to seeing nice rounded edges that just overlap nicely. To achieve this look you need to carefully trim down each side until the overlap by about a couple of cm. I say carefully because there's the risk of cutting too much away and then you have a gap in your envelope!

Tip: If you're not very good at cutting even, round edges. Grab a glass, mug or round coaster and draw round it before you cut. Perfect shape!

Making the real thing!

Now you have your template you are ready to make your real envelopes. So take your paper and lay the template out on top, draw round it in pencil and then cut it out. It's as simple as that!

Nearly finished...

Now you're left with an odd shape like this which you need to fold up again. Take your card and place it in the middle and fold the edges in. Then you need to glue 3 of the sides together. You won't have the sticky strip that store bought cards have but maybe you could include stickers in with the set to stick the edge down with?

Tip: When gluing the edges down, put something with a plastic coating on or thick box card in between the front and the back to avoid sticking the whole thing together. It's really easy to slip with the glue and then you don't have an envelope anymore because you can't get anything inside!

The Finished Product

So now you've finished you have the option to add white labels to the front for the addresses, add stickers or just leave them as they are and package them up!

As you can see in the last photo, the top envelope is a map of Northern Ireland which is where the recipient is from. I think it's always a nice touch and people are usually surprised at thinking of such detail as picking their home town. You could also so this with favourite colours, favourite patterns or places they have been.

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