Email and text messaging may be the quickest way to communicate, but they will never replace the handwritten note. There are many occasions where you need to send a handwritten card or a letter—to express sincere thanks or sympathy, personalize a gift, or make an impression on an important client.
Stationery can also be a reflection of your unique style and personality. Here are tips on choosing stationery, so the recipient of your letter will know, at a glance, that this note is from you.
Get a feel of your personal preferences
There are a lot of elements to consider, such as font, borders, icons, monographs—the selection can be quite overwhelming! So first look at samples, not to choose a particular design but to get an idea of what you like. Are you drawn to pale or bright colors? Modern or antique fonts?
Texture is one of the things that email or text messaging cannot give: the weight, the surface of the paper, the soft edges of embossed monograms or the rustle of parchment-type letter sheets. While you can find a variety of designs on online, do pass by a local stationary store to get a feel of what paper stock you want, so you can narrow down your options when you look at online stores. Also think about the kind of pen you will be using: will it blot through the paper, or smear? Ask the stationary store owner whether that paper is suitable for fountain pens, or gel pens—whatever you tend to use the most.
Think beyond white
White is a safe choice, especially if your stationery will have a very vivid illustration or design. But for simpler designs, you may want to choose a paper color that’s more dramatic: soft blues and greens, tobacco stain, pale gray, soft creams…
Choose your format
Letter sheets are great, but correspondence cards are the most versatile for short notes—especially if you’re not the type who’ll write very long paragraphs.
Think about your audience
Will you be using most of them for business correspondence, or for casual correspondence with friends? You may want to have two sets made. Since you’ll be using them for years and for a number of occasions, the investment won’t go to waste.
Photo from papercrave.com