How-to: Recycled Paper Envelopes

Make your own envelopes
Often when I need cards, I find myself making them from paper and scraps of supplies I have around my office instead of purchasing them. But for some reason I usually purchase envelopes for these cards. I have plenty of paper that usually gets put in the recycle bin, and I wondered why I was buying more paper in the form of an envelope? So I worked up a template to make easy envelopes from a standard size piece of paper, therefore envelopes can me made from most magazines that would usually be placed in the recycling bin.

Here’s how:


  • 2-3 pieces of magazine or newspaper approx. 8.5” x 11”
  • Scissors and/or exacto knife
  • Paper glue
  • Printer (to print templates)
  • Pencil
  • Bonefolder or butter knife
  • Ruler

1. Download the EnvelopetemplateΒ and print it out full size (a scale has been placed on each jpg to help with printing at the correct proportions).

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6 thoughts on “How-to: Recycled Paper Envelopes”

  1. I highly appreciate the idea of reuing scraps of paper, however, one thing strikes me in this tutorial: why would you print 2 templates and THEN tracing it onto 2 other (to be reused) sheets of paper? These instructions result in using 4 (FOUR) sheets of paper to make an envelop that usually exists out of ONE sheet of paper. You could at least try (if possible) to print the template directly on the sheets of paper to be reused.

  2. Anna, I noticed that, too, but I thought that I would print the template onto heavy cardstock so that I could use it multiple times. Of course, I can’t tell if that would be possible because the templates won’t open on my computer.

  3. I disagree that printing directly onto the paper to be reused is best. If you’re going to be making many envelopes (and we use a similar method and have made many (at least a couple a week) without the template wearing out) over time using two extra pieces of paper seems like a small amount in the end. What about ink (and the cartridges it goes in?) Never mind that you can use the templates for an envelope if you are ever done with them.

    Thanks for the tutorial. We make these regularly but it’s nice to have another size template around for when we make another size card. And I had not thought of making my own mailing label. Thanks for cluing me in!

  4. I can’t find a link for the third template. It didn’t show as a link in the article. Could you provide it, please? I have never made envelopes before, but have always wanted to do it. So now is my chance!

  5. My mom makes cards and envelopes from scraps- back when I was a teen and loved writing to pen pals (before email took over) I used to make my own envelopes from pages of fashion magazines. They were bright, colorful and stylish πŸ™‚

  6. Pingback: 10 Useful Things to Make with Junk Mail | Do Good

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