Several years ago, my daughter’s friend gave out personalized stationery as a party favor. Each of the 20 sheets had my daughter’s name and a clip art image of Hello Kitty. It was adorable, and, as I especially loved, USABLE! Most party favors are enjoyed for an average of 30 seconds (not a scientific study, just from personal observation) before they are lost under the car seat, under the couch, in the vacuum, etc. I am definitely guilty of passing out these types of party favors, too! My daughter loved seeing her name on the top of the stationery! She was especially thrilled because she can never find her name on any rack of personalized mugs, keychains, etc. in gift stores. There is usually “Rebecca,” but we have yet to see her preferred nickname, “Becca.” So when she came home with her name on stationery, it went right into her desk drawer to be used for thank you notes to friends and relatives over the next few years.
For the next birthday party my daughter attended, we decided to make a set of stationery for her friend as a gift. I chose a two-column layout in Word so I could slice the paper in half after we printed it to make two 8.5”x2.5” sheets. Becca helped me choose the font she thought her friend would like her name to be in at the top, and also several royalty-free clipart images that tied in with her friend’s interests. (We used four different images per set.) It took us several times printing it off before we got the centering of the name and placement of the clipart correct, but it eventually worked. When the final style was done, I printed it on pink, yellow, green, and blue paper, then sliced them in half, and tied them in a ribbon.
We then thought, in addition to stationery, we could put together a whole writing box with an assortment of colored pens, envelopes, and stickers. We headed off to the Dollar Store, and found just what we needed! We also found stacks of stationery with fun borders (the type of paper that is intended to go in your printer). We bought several packs of this paper, then included 5 sheets of each style in a file folder and put it in the stationery box. (We saved the rest for future stationery boxes we made for her friends.) We then packaged them all up in a pretty decorative box and used my label maker to label it with “[Name’s] Writing Box.”
The Writing Box was our go-to present for the whole fourth grade year. Each birthday girl received a box with personalized paper, an assortment of border stationery, a variety of envelopes, a stack of blank cardstock cards (so they could draw on the front of the card), and stickers. We did so many stationery themes that year based on each girl’s interest—pandas, music, butterflies, coral reefs/fish, paintbrushes, soccer, etc. For a few family friends, I also included address labels I bought online. Kids especially loved having their very own name on an address label!
I was a Class Parent for my son’s first grade class. In February, they were learning how to write letters to friends and family, so for the Valentine’s Day party, I made a small set of personalized stationery for each classmate with his or her name at the top. I gave each table group a stack of tiny Valentine’s Day stickers that the kids used to decorate the edges of the paper to use for notes.
We also made personalized stationery for holiday presents for my kids’ teachers, including the librarian, art teacher, and music teacher. Sometimes we wrote “From the desk of [name]” at the top, and always included a themed clipart in the bottom corner—painter’s palette, stack of books, desk, apple, music notes, etc. We tied the stack of papers in a ribbon with a label, and had a personal gift for the cost of a few sheets of paper and a bit of printer ink!
Last March, I was trying to find a style for thank you card my son would not grumble at using for his Bar Mitzvah thank you notes. Just before the Bar Mitzvah, I had thrown together a logo using clipart that the party place projected on their big screen and I also used on a sign-in board for the event. I decided to use that same logo as his thank you notes. I spaced the logo out on the cardstock to create 4 notecards on one sheet. (Again, it took a little while to get the spacing right.) Then I bought red envelopes online to fit the 1/4 sheet notecards. And, just like that, we had a personalized notecard!
Making the stationery has been so much fun! My daughter has loved picking out fonts and images she thought her friends and teachers would like. I’ve loved seeing the reactions we’ve gotten from the personal gifts, and knowing that (hopefully) this stationery has made writing thank you notes a little more fun!