Homemade Stationary

Writing letters is a practice that has been slowly fading to the wayside for generations. I started creating stationary about two years ago when I realized that children in our day and age didn’t know what “stationary” was. This blew my mind. I daydreamed as a child, of sitting at an old wooden desk with only paper and a feathered ink pen where the goal was to send a message. I know those letters and messages then, had more of an impact than our “quick text” society today. Oh the power of handwritten words!

It means something when someone sits down to write a note, a card or a letter. It’s tangible, personal, intentional and considerate. This is why I set out to begin designing stationary to host this sort of practice.

In this tutorial, I’d like to show you a 5-step technique I use regularly for creating personalized stationary. It’s very simple and takes no more than a a half hour to forty-five minutes, depending on how particular you are.


  • paper (card stock or printer paper)
  • pencil, pen, paints, colored pencils, marker, etc.
  • ruler
  • subject matter/inspiration

Step 1: Prepare your boarder in pencil, using very light pressure. These lines are typically erased later. Draw your design in pencil. Don’t be shy about letting your design go in and out of your boarder. It creates interest and a beautiful space once used for letter-writing.

Step 2: Outline your design with a fine-tipped pen. My preference is Micron .005 but sharpie also makes a great and affordable fine-tipped pen. Erase pencil markings.

Step 3: Add color if desired. A simple line work image makes for beautiful stationary, as well.

Step 4: Positioning your ruler vertically, place light hash marks in pencil along the side. I usually set mine at every 1/4 of an inch. I would suggest drawing the whole line in pencil first if you feel you need that extra guide.

Step 5: Turn your paper horizontally and begin drawing lines in pen, based off of your hash marks. Erase hash marks.

You now have a special frame for the words you’d like to write to loved ones or an unknown pen pal. You can make copies of your design and use again in the future or let it remain an original piece of art only for the recipient to see.

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