Saturday, May 28, 2016

Line It With a Letter! (And Decorate It With...Paint.)

Line what, you ask?  Why, an envelope, of course!

Y'all probably remember that for the whole month of April (yes, I do know that that was a month ago), I was doing a letter writing challenge that my friend Jennie was hosting (I even wrote a guest post for her!), and you can actually still do the challenge at your own pace, if you like!
I'm happy to say that I successfully kept up with the challenge the whole month long, although I almost didn't for the last week.  And here's why.

I was at first using Jennie's printable stationary and not-made-by-me cards that I already had, but for the last week I wanted to do something different.  I think it was on Pinterest that I saw the idea to write a letter right inside the envelope (not that I hadn't thought of it before), so that, combined with Jennie's post on decorating envelopes, gave me the idea for what this post is about!   I had planned to go easy on myself for the whole challenge, but whatevs.  I suppose I can't be trusted.

White cardstock
Pencil + eraser
Acrylic paint (I neglected to include that in the picture.  Whoops.)
Washi tape (optional)
Each envelope I made is different.  I used a different paint for each, and even the sizes are not all the same, because I didn't go on a template or anything.

Hopefully you can see the pencil lines in this picture to get an idea of what I did, but basically I positioned an envelope I already had (you could use any rectangular shape - it doesn't have to be an envelope) in the middle of the paper, and traced around it, and then used my ruler to figure out where the center line of the envelope was, and continued that line all the way from one end of the paper to the other.  That way, I knew where to position my ruler so that the would-be envelope flap wasn't all wrong and mismeasured.  From there, I drew a straight line from the corners of the rectangle to the point at the end of the paper where my middle line ended.  I did that on all four corners.  Then I drew a another line about 1/4 inch outside of those four lines, and cut on those lines, so that when I folded the flaps, they would overlap.  I also cut in those grooves where the corners of the rectangle were, as shown below.  I thought it would work much better to fold the flaps after painting, so that's what I did!

I only told you roughly how I did it so you would have an idea, but really it doesn't matter how you make your envelope!  You could even use an already made envelope to write your letter inside!  What matters is the heart you put into decorating it, but more importantly, the letter itself.

Phew!  Now that that is over, we can get on to the fun stuff!  Painting the envelopes!  I was of course making five envelopes for the five people I was writing for the challenge.  For the first, I just did a simple polka-dot pattern with dark purple acrylic paint (I used one acrylic paint for each), using my index finger as my painting device (which I did for every one).  Woot for finger painting!

The second envelope I made featured this really pretty blue acrylic paint we have, and I just did random doodling all over.

For the third envelope, I chose a dark green paint, and to go along with that color, I finger painted trees along the front, and on the top flap, and then stripes on the other areas.
By this point, it was time for a pop of warm color!  I grabbed the red paint, and began playing around with triangles.
Now the last day was a bit different.  I had gone to bed late the previous night because I was completing that day's letter (I was not going to miss one day!), and the same was true for this day.  Er, night.  I was just too tired by this time to go to the trouble of tracing, measuring, cutting, an envelope.  I just wanted to write my letter and go to bed.

So...I did not go to the trouble of tracing, measuring, cutting, an envelope.  I just wrote my letter and went to bed.

Oh wait, did I say I "just wrote my letter and went to bed"?  Welllll, that may not be the exact truth.  You see, I can't go four other days doing something cool for my recipients, and then just leave the last one with a boring old letter that I was too tired to  make fancy.

I did, in actuality, write my letter and go to bed, but I had to write it all crazy-fun-like, so it wasn't boring.

I didn't leave it at that.  Oh no.  I got fancy with the outside in the morning (this is how I remember it, anyhow.  It was so long ago...).

What I did was, first, I decorated one side of a piece of cardstock with light purple acrylic paint.
Then I let that dry, and, since it wasn't an envelope like the rest, I folded it fancily.
It ended up being kind of thick, and hard to fasten securely.  But I got it done.
Just a quick note: does anyone else find it hard to comprehend that the address side of an envelope is suppose to be the front, and the open up side is the back?  That has never made sense to me.  I mean, do YOU walk into your house through the back door?  Do YOU drink your water out of the bottom of the glass?  Do YOU stick your head out through the bottom of your shirt?  Didn't think so.

Now, we're done with decorating the envelope, but we can't forget the most important part - writing the letter!  It's so fun to write right inside the envelope, don't you think?  And you don't have to write anything long either!  I, for some reason, don't know how to write a short letter, so I used up every inch of space I could, but that's totally weird you don't need to write more than you're comfortable with.  Also, I wrote my letters before folding, so I didn't have to wrote over the creases.
 Yes, I went fancy with the envelopes, and yes, I wrote long letters in each, but no, I didn't think that was enough, apparently.  So I made a little watercolor bookmark to put in each letter, sort of as a thank you gift for...being my recipient?  :)

I sealed each envelope with washi tape of some sort.
Don't you just love it when you have supplies that all coordinate so perfectly?  It makes my heart soar.

To make it easier to write each day of the challenge, I taped up the calendar where I could see it easily, and under it, all of my recipients' addresses, along with their day of the week.

This was such a fun challenge to do, and right up my alley!  Jennie really thinks the same way I do, and I am so happy to be her friend!

P.S.!  Man, have I missed blogging!  Things have been a little crazy lately, with my not being good at using my time well, and traveling, and such.  Maybe I will get back on track during the summer, but we will see.  Tomorrow I'm off to Tennessee, and BWSC starts on Monday!  Stay weird!

{P. P. S. Linking up here!}


  1. Those envelopes are really nice! I like how you did all the painting with your finger. (Read: that sounds simple enough for me to do! ;)

    And, I'm really curious about how you wrote your last letter 'all crazy-fun-like'. It looks really neat. Did you just start and write in whatever direction you felt like, or? Your handwriting is pretty, too, by the way. :)

    1. Thank you Jessica! Finger painting is so fun and yes, so easy!

      Yep, that's exactly right! I just started sort of in the middle and wrote one line over the whole piece of paper. I actually took a picture of the whole thing, but then I thought better of it. I'd rather not share a picture of a personal letter with all the world. And thank you! I like it. :)

  2. Those are soooo cool!!! I would love to see an envelope like that in my mail box. xD I bet you make a lot of people feel special. go you!! It's so pretty!

    1. I hope I make people feel special! I know I feel so loved when I get a letter, so I want others to feel the same! Thanks for commenting, Julia!

  3. I need the emoji where the eyes are both little hearts. These envelopes are so great! Jessica is right the letter where the words of their own way are super cool!

    1. Haha, that would be a good emoji to use here, I suppose! I'm so glad you like them, Vanessa!

  4. whoaaa. Those are so cool. And pretty. You've made me want to start writing letters. I love the way you fold the cards into envelopes as well - I'm going to try that. :)


    1. Thank you SW! Eep, that is SO SO exciting that I made you want to start writing letters! It is such a fun activity, and so rewarding! And yes, please do try folding cards into envelopes!

  5. I love those envelopes a great deal. And I loved your challenge.

    1. Thank you! I loved the challenge too! Jennie is good at that. :)

  6. This is such a fun DIY and the envelopes look awesome! Maybe I'll give it a try :)

    1. You're right - it was very fun! And thank you! I'd love it if you tried it, and feel free to show me tour results! Thanks for stopping by, Arushee!

  7. Omg this seems like such an awesome challenge! You made some really cool envelopes, I'd be so proud of them if I were you - and I'd be so happy to be one of the people receiving them!

    Little Moon Elephant

    1. Oh man, it was a fantastic challenge. I loved it! Haha, yeah, I guess you could say I'm proud of the envelopes I made, but I acknowledge that nothing I do is done without the power of God! He gives me whatever skill or talent I possess. Thanks so much for commenting, Amy!


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