If you love the look of hand-addressed envelopes but can’t squeeze the cost of professional calligraphy into your wedding budget, then this technique could be the answer for you.

You will need:

  • envelopes
  • paint pen (Decocolour)

DIY calligraphy before


1. Select a suitable font to coordinate with the invitations. One with a handwriting or script style will work best for this technique.

2. Print the address in a slightly darker colour than the envelopes.

3. Trace over the letters with a paint pen. Lay each envelope out separately to dry; stacking them could cause smudging or transfer onto other envelopes. You may need to do a second coat, especially if you are doing text that’s lighter than the background.

To be honest, they didn’t turn out quite as well as hoped. If I had a chance to do them again, I would do a couple of things differently. Here are my tips:

Don’t make the type too small
It makes accuracy difficult and letters may even ‘fill in’.

Increase the letterspacing
Since the pen is so much thicker than the printed letters, they ended up very squashed or even overlapping. (Obviously I’m using professional design software for this but you can still do this function in Word).

Use the most opaque pen you can find
It will give you the most solid colour and alleviate the need to do extra coats. I used a brand called Decocolour (purchased at Lincraft) and it was OK but it would have been much more effective had it been more opaque. If any readers have found a more opaque paint pen, please share with us!

Ms Polka Dot says: A simple and effective project from Alicia at Akimbo to give your envelopes a standardised and neat look. Try scrapbooking shops, pen shops or even borrow a fountain pen – just some other ideas  for obtaining that ‘opaque’ pen!

Hi, my name is Alicia and I am a paper addict.
I love designing quirky invitations through my business Akimbo. I’m also the Atypical Type A, my blog where I share projects and inspiration for home, parties and weddings.
Just for fun, my  favourite cocktail is a Japanese Slipper.