Since starting the Creative Pen Pals project, I've immersed myself in all things snail mail. Because let's be honest, one of the greatest joys of receiving a penned letter is the initial reaction you have when you realise that there's an adorned beauty in amongst the bills.
Something I've found though, is that if you only have a couple of pen pals, the letter-writing kits which come in packs of 10 or 20 certainly start to become less exciting and more *groan* "there's that stationery again".
Don't get me wrong, I love me a cute printed letterhead, but I also love the uniqueness of receiving something that has been customised or is one of a kind. So it got me thinking. How can I easily create some lovely, colourful stationery that can be customised using the same technique but different supplies?
So I've come up with 5 ways that you can embellish standard envelopes (nothing fancy, just plain old envelopes from an office supplies store) with supplies from your craft stash.
1. WASHI TAPE
One of the hottest craft supplies of the past couple of years, washi tape (for anyone who's not familiar with it) is a masking tape that comes in printed patterns and colours. It's sticky enough to stay put when stuck to paper but gentle enough to be repositioned and or reused. And with so many different designs available on the market, you can quite easily get lost in wasting oodles of cash on a mini collection.
It's bright. It's colourful. It's made from tissue paper. That's an all-round win in my books. Confetti is readily available at craft and party supply stores and can be picked up for a dollar or two. I think for me it's all about the randomness of just sticking the confetti dots all over the place and not having to be precise.
3. MAGAZINE COLLAGE Think back to when you were in school for a moment. Did you ever make collages in art class using clippings from old magazines, brochures and catalogues? Embrace and resurrect that exciting feeling of finding just the right image or block of text for your next envelope or creative project. It truly is quite addictive.
Ah, let's take a moment to appreciate the simplicity of the scallop. A glorious, semi-circular pattern that has often set my creative heart a flutter. Now pull out the tissue paper from the wrapping drawer and cut some strips (approx 2-3 finger widths). Now accordion-fold the strips so that you're left with a square-ish stack and using scissors, cut a semi circle ensuring that you do not cut the folded sides. Unfold and voila, you have strips of coloured, scallop tissue. Bliss.
Another one of those nostalgic craft supplies, stickers, have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. So on the 5th envelope I used masking tape stickers to randomly create a brick-like pattern on the face of the envelope, finishing it off with a cute animal character sticker.