How to make your letters exciting without attracting the attention of the CIA
    Photo by Natalie White / North by Northwestern

    Whether you resolved to chat more consistently with Grandma this new year, need inspiration to keep in touch with your study abroad host family or are just already scouring for Valentine’s Day gift ideas, this simple yet sophisticated stationary is sure to do the trick.

    Time: 30 minutes

    Cost: $18


    • scissors
    • pack of colorful scrapbook paper
    • hole punch
    • ribbon in various colors
    • envelopes


    1. Stop by a craft store to pick up a pack of paper and some ribbon. The Michaels in Skokie has great deals on scrapbook paper and big bins of ribbon for only $1 a spool. Just makes sure you buy ribbon no wider than your index finger.
    2. Decide on a size for the stationary (5×7 in. works well) and cut down the paper. You can use a variety of colors and patterns.
    3. Punch two holes in the top of each page, about an inch apart. Then cut a long strand of ribbon and thread it through the holes, ending in a small knot or bow.
    4. To personalize the stationary, print the name of the writer under the bow.
    5. Give away stacks of 10 pieces of stationary and envelopes wrapped in tissue paper as a gift or start using them for thank you notes or writing to your grandma.


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