Do-It-Yourself: Make Envelopes Out of Old Calendars

Simply Rebekah shows you how to make envelopes out of old calendar pages.

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Comments

  1. Robin says

    Cute! I actually did this in college quite a bit…using mailing labels for the address portion. Just a few weeks before the holidays, I ran across plastic template/stencils for envelopes (3 different ones. one the “standard” size and shape) Yay!

    My daughter is also discovering the crafty value of old calendar pages. :)

    Another fun thing you can do is make tiny gift bags. Using one or two pages, you can wrap the length of a small box (like the chocolate covered cherries currently on clearance at walmart), keeping the seam on the center of a narrow side. Wrap the bottom like a gift, and voila–a gift bag. To make it even cuter, fold the top edge of your bag-paper down about an inch. I’ve seen where you can tuck in a piece of cardstock, punch holes through all 3 layers, and tie a ribbon for handles…if you have thick calendar paper, you might not need the cardstock…if you want the folds on the sides, they’re easy to do too :)

    Have fun with all those pretty pages. :D

  2. Robin says

    oops, forgot to say that the templates (for envelopes) I found were 10c each, at a local thrift store. Wasn’t going to pass that up :D

  3. Robin says

    don’t see my followup post popping up…so I’m re-typing.
    I forgot to mention that those envelope templates were 10c finds at the local thrift store. (I’m sure you can find something like that at a craft store too, but for much more $)… :)

  4. Mary says

    Beware sending something like that thru the mail. If you try it, make sure it is taped **very well** at all seams. I work at a post office where mail is processed and the machines that process letter mail would eat that alive…and it would be difficult for our machines to read the barcodes that are sprayed on the envelopes if the pattern is dark. Best to use for in-person gift-giving only.

    On the same topic, beware cards from the dollar store. If the envelope feels like it could fall apart if you rub it too hard, it probably will! We have hundreds of Christmas cards still here, trying to be matched to disintegrated envelopes – if you buy “inexpensive” cards, maybe put them in a stronger envelope if mailing them! You truly do “get what you pay for” when it comes to something like that.

    Also, if in doubt about how much postage – ask at a service counter! Thousands of cards in square envelopes are returned for additional postage every day – they require 20 cents extra if square because they can’t be processed like other letters that are oblong. Don’t put rubberbands around a pile of mail and then throw it in a blue box – the rubberbands cause your letters to get bypassed during cancellation and someone has to remove the rubberband by hand. It speeds things up if you just throw them in the box loose. Always put a return address on your envelope. And, if you are enclosing a gift card, spend the extra money to buy a gift card envelope (something more rigid than paper) and make a note in the card ($25 Target gift card enclosed) so that your recipient knows what to expect! If the envelope becomes unsealed during processing, it gives the manual clerks here a better chance of matching the card to the giftcard, or it gives the recipient a clue to look for the giftcard, and if it’s missing because the envelope didnt’ seal well, they can call in a claim. If in doubt, tape the seal of the envelope shut!

    And finally, please don’t send cash thru the mail. I’ve seen envelopes ripped in half with half a bill on one side and the other half sticking out of the other end! Get a money order (some banks even offer them free to account holders) and make a note in the card – “$25 money order enclosed” – so your recipient knows to expect it!

    • Amber L. says

      @Mary, So, all your tips are so very helpful, Thank You! At work I always put rubber bands around the stack of envelopes so I don’t loose them on the way out to the mailbox (we live in a windy area). I will remember to take the band off right before putting them into the mailbox. My one co-worker laughs at me for taping envelopes but I fear the worst and need important papers to get to clients in good shape. Thanks again for the great advice!

      • Mary says

        @Amber L., Definitely better safe than sorry! I, too, tape all my flaps shut! I see dozens of what look to be good-quality envelopes split at the seams with the contents falling out…every day! If you put anything more than a few pages of paper inside an envelope, I would certainly seal both the flap and the seams with tape – your coworker should see what a sorting machine can do to an envelope with something like a car key stuck inside! These machines are fed by humans at a rate of around 30,000 pieces of mail per hour – we don’t always catch something like an envelope with a key inside – sometimes they make it part way thru and the machine jams and damages the envelope.

        So, always spend the money on a padded envelope if you are mailing something like coins, a key, a thumb drive, or other bulky item-they are either processed by hand, then, or on a machine built to handle thicker envelopes. And taking the bands off is very nice – also, hold off using things like paper clips on the outside of envelopes. I’m in a relatively small facility and we cancelled nearly a half a million (yes, million!) envelopes between the hours of 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. this evening alone – so if you think someone picks up your envelope and checks it over before it gets dumped into a hopper, I can tell you it doesn’t! :-)

        The post office does a great job, but it’s up to you to use common sense and protect what you are mailing so that it makes it through in one piece! If I took the time to make such a beautiful envelope as shown in this post, I’d also take the time to protect it if I decided to mail it – they are just too pretty to risk damaging!

        A few more tips – white and light colored envelopes are the best choice, and cards with designs along the bottom edge often make it difficult for the machine to read the barcode that gets sprayed on. If sending a parcel, include both to: and from: addresses somewhere inside, and only put the adddress on one side of the parcel. You don’t need to address all sides – the machine that scans them actually has 6 cameras that see all sides of a package at once.

        Write as clearly as possible, or type an address label if you prefer. The machines read the zip code, so try to make sure that is correct so your item isn’t delayed. If you don’t know the zip code, you can ask at any post office, or you can look them up online at http://www.usps.com – in the upper left in red is “find a zip code”. Use a permanent marker or other good-quality pen to write out the address, black or blue ink is best. Cursive writing is pretty to look at, but the machines love it if you’d print in block letters instead. If you are sending something like a wedding invite, take the time to verify with a clerk at the counter that you have correct postage – you don’t want something that important to arrive to your guests with “postage due” stamped on them, or returned to you and delayed because you didn’t put enough postage on them!

        And, if you are re-using a box or envelope, make sure there are no old barcodes, labels, addresses or other confusing writing showing. Black it out with a marker, cover it with a “priority mail” sticker from the post office, etc. And, make sure if you reuse something like an Avon box that it doesn’t indicate the contents are hazardous (sometimes you will see ORM-D on the side of the box – don’t use these!) or your box may just come back to you! You can always use a brown paper bag and cover up writing if you need to, or pick up a free Priority box at your local post office to use instead.