Envelopes are something that most people ignore. They might contain junk mail, bills or letters. Unless they have special meaning, most people throw envelopes in the trash without a second thought. One way to change that is to fold your own envelopes. Folding your own envelopes gives you an opportunity to decorate the envelope with stamps or words and house your letter or card in a unique creation, which makes it even more special for the recipient.
Making a Paper Envelope
A handmade envelope can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. The easiest handmade envelope comes from a square sheet of paper. You will also need a pencil, a ruler and a glue stick or double-sided tape to hold your envelope together.
To make your envelope, first use the pencil and ruler to draw a light line between the opposite corners of the paper to create a large X. Next, make a small dot at the center of the X to mark the center of your piece of paper. Now, fold the two opposite corners of the paper toward the center, making sure both corners touch the center dot.
Then, use your fingernail to crease the folds in the paper. Fold the bottom point up so that it's about a one-half inch above the center dot, and crease this fold as well. This extra space helps to ensure that the bottom flap will overlap both of the side flaps. Use tape or your glue stick to secure the area where the bottom flap overlaps the two side flaps. Fold the top corner down to overlap the center dot by about a one-half inch to make the envelope's closing flap. Use a glue stick, double-sided tape or a fun sticker to seal your envelope.
Making an Envelope in Word
If you're addressing a large number of envelopes by hand, you might wonder if computers can help with this tedious task. Fortunately, Word makes it easy to input your return address, delivery address and any other information before you print directly onto your envelope.
To create an envelope in Word, click on the Mailings tab and then on Envelopes. This brings up a window where you can type in your delivery and return address. Click on the Preview option to select the type of envelope you're using and follow your printer's instructions for feeding and printing the envelope. If you don't print envelopes often, print a test envelope first so that you're sure about the correct way to feed them through your printer.
Mailing and Shipping Envelopes
If you want to purchase envelopes to use for mailing or shipping, there are many different options available. The Post Office defines envelopes as ranging in size from 3.5 inches to 11.5 inches long. They also offer flat rate envelopes that you can ship anywhere in the country for a set price, regardless of weight.
Office supply stores offer envelopes in a wide variety of sizes and options. These range from commercial envelopes to announcement envelopes. You can also find catalog or booklet-size envelopes. They're available in a wide variety of colors and paper stocks. Some envelopes are even available with or without security windows. Whatever your need or preference, there's an envelope available for you.
Stacy Zogheib's writing has been published in various online publications including Classroom.Synonym. She is a teacher and developmental specialist with experience teaching first grade, special education and working with families of children ages 0 to 3. She has a Bachelor of Arts in elementary and special education from Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio and a Master's degree in Early Childhood Education from Northern Arizona University.