Painted Ombre Thank-You Tags For Any Occasion

PAINTED OMBRE THANK YOU TAGS
Ombre is one of the prettiest trends to hit the crafting scene and it’s not showing any signs of slowing down (unlike chevron, buh- bye.) These DIY Painted Ombre Thank You Tags are super easy to replicate and depending on the type of paint used, can really give gifts a pop of color. After you make a few of these you’ll want to paint a dozen to stamp with an Expressionery Thank You Stamp and have ready for the next time you need to say thank you.

Painted Ombre Thank You Tags


Sending a small gift complete with a beautiful handmade ombre tag is so much more fun than a traditional boring thank you card! By adding a handpainted tag your gift will have the thoughtful, handmade feel you know any recipient will appreciate. While this project does take some time, the outcome is worth the effort.

Step 1: Gather Supplies ombre painting supplies First, you will need a set of pre-cut gift tags and twine, or make your own by cutting out the desired size and shape tag from watercolor paper. Then, grab some watercolor paints, a small paintbrush, a glass with water to rinse the brush, customized Expressionery Thank You Stamp, paper towels and some newspaper to protect your working space.

Step 2: Arrange Blank Tags Next, take the blank white or ivory tags and lay them out on a piece of paper towel. This is important because you will want to soak up any excess water when painting.

Step 3: Start With Water Water is a key part of creating that perfect ombre look. Before you begin painting, take a brush and lightly cover the tag with water. When working with watercolor the pigment moves easily and the more water you have the better.

Step 4: Apply Paint How to apply paint for ombre Watercolor paints aren’t permanent to the paper like acrylics, so the color intensity can be increased or decreased depending on how much water is used. Watercolors are bright with less water and become pastel or transparent as you add water. For this project it’s best to start with the edge of the tag. This will be the darker more intense color. Add a tiny bit of water to your paint to get started and then apply a stripe of color to the tag. Let this dry about a minute or two and repeat.

Step 5: Add More Water use a lot of water with ombre painting Next, add a bit more water to the paint itself and apply a few more stripes of color to the tag. Keep these stripes as close as possible, increasing the amount of water in each stripe. This will give that that pretty gradient look. You may also want to use some water to pull pigment from one stripe to the next for a more subtle (less stripy) look. The great thing about watercolor is you can actually “lift” paint if there’s too much color by adding more water and blotting with a towel. So, don’t worry if once you get working there’s too much paint! Watercolor projects are easy to fix.

Step 6: Let Dry And Repeat Repeat ombre effect When you’re finished painting let the tags dry for at least an hour. Repeat the ombre painting process with the rest of the tags and switch up paint colors to create a colorful set!

Step 7: Stamp Thank You Ombre painted tags When the tags are dry, it’s time to grab your Expressionery Thank You Stamp. Line up the stamp across the bottom of the tag, or position it in the center for a horizontal message.

Step 8: Attach Tag and Gift Cut a piece of string or bakers twine to attach the thank you tag to a gift.

These tags are such a pretty addition to any gift, you’ll want to make ombre tags for every gifting occasion!

This post is a part of our 30 Days of Stamps blog series. Each week we’ll share inspiration and tutorials for easy handmade projects to make yourself featuring Expressionery self-inking stamps. For more stamp ideas, be sure to check out the 30 Days of Stamps series and share your projects on social media and follow along using the hashtag #30DaysofStamps.

Easy Teacher Appreciation Gift Ideas

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Teacher Appreciation Gift Ideas
Although Teacher Appreciation Week technically happens just once a year, really we should be thanking our teachers throughout the whole year for their kindness and support. As a busy mom, helping out kids with school assignments can be boring, until it’s time to do something fun and crafty- like a DIY gift. It’s a great way to show your child’s teacher how much they mean to your family and an excuse to craft! Even though it may be easier to pick up a gift card or two, going the extra mile to personalize a teacher gift can mean the world to them.

Our friend Laura Kelly from Laura Kelly Designs has partnered with a handful of crafty bloggers to share plenty of ideas to help you show teachers some love. The next time your teachers does something special to help your child, remember to say thanks. Take a look at some of our Teacher themed stationery and stamps for some inspiration and from 4/25- 5/25 you can use code TEACHERAPP for 30% off any Expressionery teacher gift.

From quick easy printables for the mom-on-the-go, to handprinted wooden signs for crafty moms, there is something for everyone in this collection of teacher appreciation gift ideas.

15 Easy Teacher Appreciation Gift Ideas

Mark your calendar for the official teacher appreciation week (it happens each May) but, remember to show your gratitude dying school breaks, vacations and the open or close of a school year too. As a parent you know what it’s like to never really be “off duty” and a little gift of thanks can go a long way for a teacher any time of year.



Sending cards to our troops

Sending cards to troops

In honor of Armed Forces Day this Saturday, we wanted to do something special for our troops. So we printed up some special “Thank You” stationery, formed a plan and got our whole company involved in writing thank you cards to our troops.

Did you know letters are the #1 thing that U.S. troops request? A simple thank-you note can reassure them and lift their spirits.

Sending letters to troops

If you’d like to send a card or a letter to our troops, there are many ways to do so. If a friend or family member has been deployed, ask them if they can give you a roster so you can write letters to specific troops.

But if not, there are lots of resources. Try going through a service like A Million Thanks. You can send as many letters as you like, and they’ll take care of addressing them for you. We were fortunate enough to get a roster from employees whose loved ones were stationed overseas, so we got to address each card.

If you’re not sure quite what to write, we’ve got you covered. Here are a few examples and tips to get you started:

Dear __________,

It’s hard to know how to thank someone who has sacrificed so much for our country, but I will do my best. Thank you for having the courage to stand up and defend our freedom. Thank you for all the things you have given up in order to be where you are today. I want you to know that there are millions of civilians who are proud of you and deeply thankful for everything you do. I am praying that you will come home safely and your family will be comforted while you are away. May you be blessed in all you do.

Sincerely,

_______________

Dear Service Member,

I wanted to take a moment and let you know how much your service is appreciated. Even though you are far away, you are in our hearts and prayers every day. I thank you for being brave, selfless, strong and courageous enough to help preserve all the freedoms we enjoy every day. May your tour go by quickly and may you arrive safely back home with your loved ones.

With deep gratitude,

_______________

Dear Service Member,

Thank you for the sacrifices you make daily to protect America and our freedom. We care, and we want you to know that we stand behind you. Thank you for your dedication and the sacrifices that you and your family have made on my behalf.

Many thanks,

_______________

A few more tips:

  • Thank the troops for their service and for the freedoms they secure for us.
  • Encourage them by letting them know that we support them.
  • Don’t address the card “Dear Soldier” unless you know the person is a soldier. Troops like Marines do not refer to themselves as soldiers.
  • Be creative – draw a picture, use decorative stationery or print pictures in your letter. (Many services like A Million Thanks don’t allow inserts, so photos need to be printed on the letter itself.)
  • Include your name and address, or email address – many servicemen like to write back.

How to write graduation thank you notes

How to write graduation thank you notes

Don't get discouraged! It's easy to write thank you notes.

Pictured above: Graduation Caps Folded Notes from Expressionery.com.

Graduation season is quickly approaching and while you might be dreaming of tossing out your pen and papers, think again. Along with the graduation ceremony come graduation parties, and along with graduation parties come graduation gifts, and along with graduation gifts come THANK YOU NOTES!

In our technology-infused society, the handwritten thank you note is becoming more rare. The good news about this is, that makes it really easy to leave a good impression on your friends and family when you write one! You never know when that may come in handy later!

I graduated from college and got married all in the same week. (In case you needed further proof that I can multitask!) Because of this, I received some especially generous wedding gifts from my church family, who had all known my family for many years. I took my time and wrote out each thank you by hand on cards that I had designed myself.

I didn’t think much of it at the time, but I found out later that one of the ladies had pulled my mother aside to tell her how much she appreciated the card. Not only had I written the note by hand, I’d told her what I was going to use her generous gift card for – new clothes. This made her feel that I truly appreciated the gift.

Not long after graduation, I found myself needing a reference for a job I was applying for. Being a new graduate, I didn’t have many people who could do that for me. But as soon as I put the word out, that lady’s husband (who had known my family for years, but didn’t know me all that well) wrote one of the best letters of recommendation I have ever received. I still carry his recommendation on my LinkedIn profile.

Writing your graduation thank you notes

Don’t feel pressured or worried that you’re going to say the wrong thing. As long as you write honestly and from the heart, there’s really no wrong way to write a thank you note. I probably only spent two minutes writing and addressing that one card, but as they say, it’s the thought that counts.

Graduation thank yous

Get inspired to write great thank you notes with cool stationery and accessories!

First, pick out a set of cards that suit your style. There’s no rule that says graduation thank you’s have to be formal – it’s all up to you. If you’re not the type to design your own cards, you can still get a custom look with personalized thank you notes.

Print your name or a simple “Thank you” message on the front of anything from formal embossed cards to casual, cartoon-style illustrations. You might even want to get a couple of different sets and send more formal notes to certain relatives and more casual notes to your friends. (Just don’t make the mistake of pre-printing the thank you message that goes inside – taking the time to write your cards by hand will mean so much more.)

Now that you’ve got your notecards, grab a few pens. Gel pens are great because they don’t skip like those cheap pens you wrote your term paper with. Black is the most formal color; others like blue, green and burgundy can add a more warm or casual feel. Choose based on your own style and how you want the recipient to feel when they open the envelope.

Graduation thank you note wording

And now, for thank you note etiquette 101. Just kidding – there are only a few things you need to keep in mind.

  • The greeting – “Dear” is often a good word – it’s polite, yet friendly.
  • The message – Thank the person for coming to your party and/or graduation, if they attended. They took time out of their busy schedule to be there and support you. Then, mention the gift (even if you didn’t really like it) and thank them for it. Never say you’re going to return or exchange it. If you received money or gift cards, tell them what you plan to use the money for. (Just don’t tell them if you blew it on an Xbox 360.) If you can’t think of much to say about the gift itself, talk about your summer plans – how you can’t wait to start your summer job or start your college classes.
  • The closing – this is where you have a lot of freedom. If you want your note to feel formal, “Sincerely” is a classic. For a more casual tone, you can try “Thanks again,” for relatives you can use “With love” or for a really formal (business contact style) tone you could use “Best regards.”

Graduation thank you card examples

Here are a few examples to get you started:

To a teacher:

Dear Ms. Williams,

I can’t believe I’m graduating! I am so excited, and I wanted to take a moment to tell you how much I have appreciated your help over the past few years. You’ve been so patient, and you inspired me to decide upon a communications major.

Thank you for coming to my party and for all your words of wisdom over the years. I will always remember you as one of my best teachers.

Thanks again,

Elaine

To a friend:

Dear Jennie,

Wow, I can’t believe graduation is finally here. It feels like just yesterday we were freshmen! I wanted to thank you for your friendship over the years and let you know how much I’m going to miss you.

Thank you for coming to my party. You really didn’t have to get me a gift – your friendship is enough! – but I am so excited to put the beautiful lamp you got me in my new room. It will remind me of you every time I turn it on.

Your friend,

Elaine

To a relative:

Dear Uncle Joe and Aunt Susan,

Thank you for flying all the way from San Diego for my graduation! It was great having you there. Thank you, too, for the generous gift. I was going to take my old backpack on my trip this summer, but now I can get a new one with wheels and the works. It should make traveling much more comfortable!

Love,

Elaine

Sending your notes

And now for the last step – actually sending the cards! It’s easiest to address each envelope as you write your notes – that way, you don’t end up putting the wrong card in the wrong envelope. Then, stamp or stick your return address on the back flap – this saves a ton of time and makes the envelope look nicer too. Finally, put on a stamp and stick a batch in the mailbox.

Keep in mind, you don’t have to write all your thank you notes in one sitting, or even mail them all out together. It’s often easier to send out a batch here and there until you have them all done. Just keep a running list of all the cards you need to write so you don’t forget whether or not you sent someone’s card!

And now that you’ve completed thank you note writing 101 … it’s time for a pop quiz! Just kidding. Toss that cap in the air (but keep your stationery close by). It’s time to celebrate!