DIY & Crafts

Make custom stationery

By: Marg Meikle and Jess

Author: Canadian Living

DIY & Crafts

Make custom stationery

By: Marg Meikle and Jess

Using a logo you have created or an image you like, it is possible to fashion personalized letterhead and all kinds of other stationery.

Colour inkjet printer
Scanning software
Layout software or Microsoft Word
Logo or artwork
Business card paper
3-ring binder with cover inserts

Binder cover

A fun project for both kids and adults is to put together a page of images for a binder cover using your logo and/or other art. First, prepare the art by scanning, lasso-ing or cropping the images you want and enhancing, colouring, and sizing each one. Open your page-layout software and set up an 8-1/2 X 11" page with margins as small as you can make them. Now you can cut and paste or insert your images and start playing around with layout until you are satisfied.

Now try several different background colour options, too. When you are happy with the layout, print it. Try different papers for different results. HP's heavy glossy brochure paper made a lovely binder cover. You could also use this technique to make wrapping paper or book jackets.

If you want to do the spine insert for your binder, it is useful to use a template. Avery has free templates to use with Microsoft Word. Go to, click on SOFTWARE, then BLANK TEMPLATE LIBRARY, then BINDER SPINE INSERTS, and then click on the width of insert your binder takes. Download the template, type into it and insert art if you want, then print. You can buy their spine paper or just print on your paper and cut out your spine.

Business cards, book plates, all available by template.

To help you make custom business cards, HP offers a handy "wizard." You can also create your own cards using Microsoft Word. Visit, click on SOFTWARE, then BLANK TEMPLATE LIBRARY, and you will find blank templates for Microsoft Word documents of all kinds. These templates are the key to making labels, cards, dividers, and all sorts of other handy organizing tools. Just type in the text you want and use INSERT PICTURE FROM FILE to add a logo. For business cards, print up on business card blanks or cardstock. For bookplates, use the business card or postcard template and full page sticky-backed paper. Print and cut.

Letterhead design

Spruce up any letter with your logo. You can use HP's Letterhead Wizard for creating business or personal letterhead or you can create your own. Using your own colour inkjet printer allows flexibility -- you can produce serious business stock one day and silly letters-to-friends stationery the next. The same basic procedures apply.

Open your page-layout software or Word and do a page set up for your 8-1/2 X 11" paper: Portrait page orientation and 1" margins. Type your name, return address, email address, fax number and web site if you have one. Highlight that text and format it in the font and size you want. Position this text either at the top right or top left. Now, place the logo where you want it. If you are using Word, click INSERT, PICTURE, FROM FILE, then navigate to and click on the image of the logo you want to insert.

Putting it at the top center is quite formal and traditional, whereas the bottom corner is a little more contemporary. Try printing off some dummy letters (in greyscale to save colour ink) to make sure you have positioned everything correctly.

Save it as a template so you can use it again and again. If you are using Microsoft Word, here's more:
1. On the FILE menu, click SAVE AS.
2. In the SAVE AS Format dropdown menu, click DOCUMENT TEMPLATE. (This will give your file a .dot extension and place it automatically in a "My Templates" folder).
3. In the FILE NAME box, type a name for your new template, and then click SAVE.

You can now either:
1. Keep the template, copy it whenever you open a new letter and type right into it, then print, or
2. Print up a number of copies on good stationery, and type into a page you have set up that will fit perfectly when you print on your letterhead.

Related links
Kids' bookplate labels from HP

Labels and binder covers from HP

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DIY & Crafts

Make custom stationery