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Punch Perfect: Create Custom Stationery Sets

  • By Jennifer Cegielski
  • Photos by Annie Baron

Get inspired to create your own personalized designs using these simple techniques.

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Plain flat and folded cards and envelopes in colorful papers are plentiful at stationery stores--choose your favorites in complementary combinations, and you can easily customize a complete set of stationery using a few basic tools like paper punches and ink stamps. Card edges, envelope corners and flaps, and even gift enclosures all benefit from a little decorative embellishment. You might wish to select a single signature motif like a hydrangea blossom, or coordinate several different patterns that work together for a cohesive look.

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Acqua Scalloped-Punch Stationery Set

Acqua Scalloped-Punch Stationery Set

Create borders, corner cuts, and bands to embellish colorful cards and envelopes with an edge-punch set.

Red Hydrangea Punch Stationery Set

Red Hydrangea Punch Stationery Set

Accent a complete set of cards and envelopes in different ways with a single paper punch. One with a simple motif, like this hydrangea silhouette, keeps the look bold and graphic. 

Navy Ink-Stamped Stationery Set

Navy Ink-Stamped Stationery Set

Make your mark with white and blue inks and stamps for a personalized set of cards and envelopes.

Tips and Techniques

  • Make an Impact
    Make an Impact

    It’s the play of positive and negative space from the cutouts and the contrasting colors that make the punched papers pop.

  • Stamp It
    Stamp It

    Try using stamps in unexpected ways--stamp around one corner of a card or create a partial border just along the edge of the envelope flap. You can also print with two different colors of ink--we’ve used white ink on dark paper here, as well as the reverse. If you do use white or light-colored ink on dark paper, be sure the ink is dry before moving onto the next section of stamping, as every mistake or smear becomes more obvious against darker colors of paper. 

  • Technique
    Technique

    When selecting stationery to punch, be sure to choose light- to medium-weight card stock for the cleanest cuts, and use solid, even pressure with the punch flat on your work surface when possible.

  • Go Edgy
    Go Edgy

    Ordinary cards and envelopes take on an elegant flourish with a few thoughtfully positioned punch cuts. Edge punches create a perfectly punched line along a paper’s edge, but you can also use them to make partial punches--and don’t forget to cut a few corners, too.

  • Make an Impact
    Make an Impact

    It’s the play of positive and negative space from the cutouts and the contrasting colors that make the punched papers pop.

  • Technique
    Technique

    When selecting stationery to punch, be sure to choose light- to medium-weight card stock for the cleanest cuts, and use solid, even pressure with the punch flat on your work surface when possible.

  • Stamp It
    Stamp It

    Try using stamps in unexpected ways--stamp around one corner of a card or create a partial border just along the edge of the envelope flap. You can also print with two different colors of ink--we’ve used white ink on dark paper here, as well as the reverse. If you do use white or light-colored ink on dark paper, be sure the ink is dry before moving onto the next section of stamping, as every mistake or smear becomes more obvious against darker colors of paper. 

  • Go Edgy
    Go Edgy

    Ordinary cards and envelopes take on an elegant flourish with a few thoughtfully positioned punch cuts. Edge punches create a perfectly punched line along a paper’s edge, but you can also use them to make partial punches--and don’t forget to cut a few corners, too.

Tools & Materials

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