Our best card sending and letter writing ideas

A hand-written note is a hug you get to keep.

Maybe you’ve made it a goal to develop a letter writing habit. Maybe you have someone you feel the need to reach out to more often. Or maybe you’re just the type of person who likes brightening days! Any one of those is a great reason for card sending and letter writing.

But as many reasons as there are to put pen to paper and let someone know you’ve been thinking of them, life can sometimes make doing it a challenge!

So we’ve gathered up all our best tips, tricks, reasons and advice for writing, addressing—even decorating—personal notes to the people you love, in the hope that they help you

Inspired? Create and share by tagging @HallmarkStores.

Decorating a card

Why send cards and write letters?  

Everything about seeing an envelope hand-addressed to you in the mailbox says “somebody cares”: the name and address in familiar handwriting, the fancy paper, the knowledge someone took the time to sit down and write to you and then find a stamp and send it…we could go on!

Basically, when you send someone a card or letter, you’re literally sending happiness into the world.

How to make card sending and letter writing easy  

Sending cards and writing letters is kind of like cooking in that it’s easier to focus on the task at hand if you’re well prepared. So first, let’s make sure you have everything you need.

  • Freshen up that stash of cards and stationery. You’ll be way more likely—and a lot more excited—to send cards and write letters if you’ve got stuff you’re excited to send. So take a few minutes and stock up on cute cards and pretty stationery that will motivate you to write more. We love these curated card assortment boxes for stocking up.
  • Clear a space on your desk. Messy desk space usually equates to a messy headspace. Make it easier to focus by tidying the area in which you plan to sit down and write.
  • Get out the good pens. Is there something really satisfying about smooth-flowing ink or is it just us? Avoid hand cramps and make card and letter writing a delight with a quality writing instrument.
  • Stock up on pretty stamps. Or for those of us who get irked by snowman stamps in August, some seasonally appropriate ones. You can shop all the stamps at USPS.com!
  • Make sure those address books are up to date. Pssst…we have a tip on the easiest way to do that here.
  • Brush up on the basics. If you don’t already know, here’s how to address an envelope—plus etiquette rules.

Where to find inspiration for card and letter writing  

Sometimes we’re ready and willing to write our hearts out, but we can’t think of a thing to write or choose a person to write to. Or sometimes inspiration is everywhere, and that’s part of the problem.

Here are some simple sources of inspiration to get your pen moving, no matter which conundrum you’re facing:

  • Check your calendar. Who’s birthday is drawing near? Who’s celebrating an anniversary? Is there a major holiday or a fun “smalliday” like National Card and Letter Writing Month coming up?
  • Check your social media. Does someone seem to be having a hard time after a job loss or the death of a loved one? Check in on them with a card or letter.
  • Check your texts. Did someone send an exclamation-filled message about finally getting that promotion, or finding out that they’re expecting? Congratulate them!
Writing a personal note

How to write a heartfelt personal note  

You don’t need a big reason or special occasion to send a card or letter. Here are some tips for card and letter writing from our Hallmark writers:

  • Open it up. Start with “dear” or even “dearest.” Or try “hi” or “hello” or the old-school charm of “greetings.” Add the recipient’s name and you’re off!
  • Say why you’re writing. If you’re sending a greeting card that already explains it, skip this step. Otherwise, let the recipient know what got you thinking of them today. Helpful tip: Be specific, like “I heard [name of song]” or “I baked [type of cookie] with your recipe” or some other true, real-life nugget.
  • Go on a bit. Add a line or two more about why you’re writing. Add a specific thought about the story, a detail about the day, a compliment or a comment. Helpful tip: Focus on the recipient and what they might want or need to hear from you.
  • Reaffirm your relationship. Finish with a little reminder of why your recipient matters to you. It can be as simple as “you always make me smile,” as serious as “I care about you very much” or anywhere in between.
  • Say it again. End with a quick reminder of your reason for writing. It’s kind of like a bookend…or the closing of one of those five-paragraph essays from high school.
  • Finish strong. There are so many wonderful ways to close a letter. Try…
    Best wishes
    Yours truly
    Your friend


…and sign your name. That’s it! If you need more tips on what to write in a card or letter, we have ideas for pretty much any sending occasion or holiday right here.

P.S.: Your note doesn’t have to be long. Just sincere!

Cards and letters on a table

Ways to build a letter-writing habit  

There’s enough stuff in our lives we must do—and probably not enough we get to do or love to do. What if we could get into a card-sending, letter-writing habit that falls in that last category?

Here are a few hints to help fit sending personal notes into your routine.

  • Make it easy. Keep your stationery, pens and stamps accessible, especially when and where you’re most likely to write.
  • Start small. Write one short note inside a greeting card—or maybe just send a postcard. See how good it feels to write, seal, stamp and send a simple note.
  • You do you. Do you love ritual? Great: Make some tea, light a candle, curl up in a comfy chair and grab your favorite pen. Are you a check-the-box-and-move-on type? Maybe your stationery stash is on the counter, where you can dash off a quick note while you’re sifting through the mail. Or if you’re the consummate multitasker, carry a little portfolio and write in waiting rooms.
  • Do what’s fun. What will make you look forward to mailing or delivering your note: knowing you’ve chosen the perfect card, written a wonderful letter or turned the envelope into a work of art? Any one of those will make the recipient smile—and give you something to look forward to.
Letters and cards on a table
Decorating envelopes

How to decorate an envelope  

We firmly believe one of the most fun parts of sending a card or letter is decorating the envelope. Why not let your pen pal know right from the start you think they’re a big deal? Here’s how:

Start by gathering your supplies:

  • Pencils, pens and markers. Try for a range of colors and styles. Thick and thin. Metallic, white, glitter. Brush tips, wide nibs, calligraphy.
  • Stickers, seals, washi tape. All the stuff you wished you had in elementary school to fancy-up a letter or note? Go get it!
  • Scratch paper. For sketching out ideas. More on that below!
  • Pencil, eraser and a ruler, compass and square. If you’re confident with free-handing your envelope decorating, go for it! But if you’re more methodical and precise by nature, we recommend these tools.


Try some of these tips:

  • Do a rough draft. Make some little sketches on scratch paper before you start on the envelope to play with how the addresses and designs fit your space.
  • Pencil it in. Lightly pencil in your design on the envelope before you bring out the markers.
  • Double-check your addresses. Before you go over everything in marker, review the essentials: Name, address, city, state, zip—for both the address and return address.


And don’t forget to download these free envelope-decorating tip sheets with hand-lettered fonts and designs to try!

Send a letter to you, too  

Yes—we are absolutely recommending that you send a letter to yourself. Opening a message written a year ago—or even five years or more in the past—can be moving, entertaining and even therapeutic.

Here are some ideas for messages to write just to you:

  • Words of encouragement. On a day you’re feeling like you can do anything, take a minute to remind Future You how it feels or Past You how far you’ve come.
  • Happy wishes. Capture your hopes and dreams to be opened on birthdays, anniversaries and other milestones.
  • Good things. Write about great memories, what is making you happy right this second and what you’re looking forward to in the future.
  • Big questions. When you’re wondering what the days ahead will bring, ask the questions. Let your older, wiser self answer them.
  • What it’s like. Tell Future You how you spend your days, who you hang out with, what takes up space in your brain.

Tip: Believe it or not, it’s easy to completely forget these notes to yourself exist. To make sure you open them, put them somewhere safe and remind yourself about them with an online calendar or app—or write the date or reason to open them on the envelope and keep them somewhere you can’t miss.

We’re hoping these tips and ideas for card sending and letter writing have you feeling like sending cards and writing letters will be a breeze from now on!


If you’re looking for more ideas for sending cards and writing letters, we’ve got lots!