Technique: Repurposing Privacy Envelopes

Welcome to my blog Paper Crafting With Rebecca!

I so enjoy all things paper! I notice the texture, scent, patterns, colors, weight and even the "vibe" of paper. I also dislike having to throw away paper if it still has "life" to it. Privacy envelopes are a good example of this. Have you ever noticed the pretty patterns inside these envelopes?

In our house we try to keep finances as "paperless" as possible, however, it still seems as if I am constantly receiving statements, advertisements or requests for donations in the mail. These mailings often include a brand new envelope that would normally end up in the recycle bin. But not in our house! I save these free unsung beauties and give them new life. Let me show you one of the things I do with repurposed privacy envelopes.

First you will want to open/flatten the envelops so you can fully see the patterned side of each one.

Next, to conserve space, I trim off the ragged edges and the glued seams. This will make it easier to stack your stash in a tidy pile.

Now, what to do with these pretty and varied sizes of paper? Well, for starters, let's make a set of four cards to give as a gift set.

1. Trim some of the repurposed paper into strips measuring 0.25", 0.5", and 1" wide. Don't worry about the length at this point.

2. Cut four pieces of black cardstock to 4" x 5.25".

3. Start gluing the strips of repurposed envelope paper to the black cardstock in a staggered pattern. Don't worry about the pieces hanging off the edge of the cardstock (those overhangs will be trimmed off in the next step). I like to see a bit of the black cardstock between the paper pieces, but you can arrange the strips as you like best.

4. Once all the cardstock is covered, trim off the overhanging pieces of the repurposed envelope paper. (Save the trimmings for the next piece of black cardstock).

5. Repeat this process three more times so you have a set of four backgrounds.

6. Next you will need to cut four pieces of white cardstock to 4.25" x 11" to use as your card bases.

7. Score and fold at 5.5". This is also a good time to include a stamped sentiment inside each card base if you want to.

8. At this point you will want to look in your stash for your favorite embellishments. I chose to use some gold foil single word sentiments and adhere them to scrap pieces of the black cardstock cut 4" wide.

9. To add a bit more "bling" I attached three strips of Cricut glitter tape to each one as a background to help the word sentiments "pop" and add some interest to the card.

10. Now attach the black/repurposed paper cardstock to the white base cards.

11. Lastly, attach your embellishments. I used foam tape to attach the single word sentiment strips to the cards to give added dimension.

Isn't that better than simply throwing those privacy envelopes into the recycle bin?

Generally, when I make a gift set, I use my punch board to make a coordinated gift box to store the cards and their matching envelopes inside of.

Thank you for reading my blog! I hope you have fun creating and finding more things you can do with this readily available free source of patterned paper. Take time to look around your house for other ways to use repurposed paper and be sure to share your ideas with us in the comment section below.

Happy Paper Crafting,


  1. This is very helpful. Thank you for showing how to make these.


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