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Creating Memorable Thank You Notes

Updated on May 11, 2009

Writing thank you notes can be fun, or it can be a long and drawn out affair. Whether writing a single thank you for something or hundreds it is a good idea to come up with some guidelines to makeĀ  your thank you's memorable. After all, you want them to know that you are thankful and you want them to remember that they received a thankĀ  you.

Follow Those Before You

Following some rules that came from those before you will make it easier to come up with memorable thank you notes. Thank you's have been around for a long time and some things about them just shouldn't change.

  1. Take the time to write a hand message. Sure you could find a thank you with a message inside and just sign your name, but it won't be that great for the person receiving it. Instead, write a message inside the card (or on the back side if using post cards).
  2. Make it personal. Add names, include what you are thanking them for, and overall make it a personal experience. Add information such as what you will use the item for. Make sure you don't add money but rather refer to it as their generosity or kindness and give a general idea about what you will use the money for without giving an itemized list.
  3. Try to make it on time. Late thank you's are better then no thank you's, but it is best if you can send the thank you notes closer to the event that you are thanking them for. This will keep both fresh in their minds.
  4. Write your best. For some this is harder then others, but it is important that the receiver of the thank you note can actually ready what is written. You may need to practice a few times before putting it down.
  5. Use a good pen. The writing instrument that you choose will make a difference. You should use a good pen in a dark color to make it easiest to read.
  6. Take your time. No you shouldn't take your time getting the thank you notes out, but you should take your time writing them. After all, the sooner they get the thank you note the better!
  7. Take them to the post office. You want to do your best to make sure that your thank you note will arrive in a timely manner. Taking the stack of them to the post office is the best bet. Plus you can know that they aren't sitting around the house somewhere!

Make Them Special

Thank you notes are, sadly, becoming a thing of the past. However, this doesn't mean that we don't all love being thanked for giving gifts and helping out. It is important that you follow a few basic steps and "rules" for sending thank you's, but you can also make them memorable and special by adding just a touch of spice.

  • Confetti- Adding a little bright color, theme related confetti to the bottom of the envelope or to the inside of the card can always be a great way to brighten a thank you.
  • Use a special pen- You should use a good pen in a clear color for easy writing and reading. However you can get a little creative with color and have fun adding interesting colors to your card. Maybe you write in black, but sign you name in a bright gel pen. Have fun with it.
  • Stickers and Stamps- You can add stickers and stamps, both to the card and to the outside of the card. Maybe you find a cool sticker that says thank you and you use it to close all the envelopes. Whatever it is, have fun with it.

The biggest thing to remember is that if you would like to get it in the mail then chances are someone else would as well. Have fun with it and make it special!

Things To Avoid there are a lot of things you can do for a good thank you note, but what should you avoid in writing your thank you note? Here are a few things that should be avoided or saved for other times:

  1. "I am just writing to tell you...", This is one of those phrases that just isn't necessary and makes it feel a little like you would never have otherwise written to the person. So, skip it and just get right to the thanks (after all, that's why you are writing!).
  2. Money. Money is one of those gifts we all love, but is a more sensitive subject. It is a good idea to to use phrases like kindness and generosity instead of money and to let them know how much it helped without listing what you did with it. For example, replace "Thank you for the $50!" with "Thank you for your generosity!" And replace "We bought a new towel set, a shower curtain, and new soap." with "We used it for sprucing up our new bathroom".
  3. Avoid chatting about your life. Sure you like telling your grandma about what's going on and stuff, but this note should be about her. Make it short, sweet, and to the point. Don't ramble on and don't bother telling her about your life, job, or kids. If you want to share those details with her, write a separate letter.
  4. Be careful when thanking someone for something you didn't like. It's always bound to happen. Someone will give something that is horrible, ugly, unusable, or that you will put in your re gift pile. You still need to thank them for it. Just choose your words carefully. Pick out what you like about the item (there has to be at least one good thing about it) and mention that without getting carried away and being overenthusiastic.


Dear Aunt Sally,

Thank you very much for the car seat. Your generosity has helped us out immensely and will help keep the new baby safe for years to come. Thank you very much!

With love,


Notice that it is short, to the point, will fit easily on the inside of a lovely card, and doesn't go on about things not related to the thank you. Add personal touches with color, stickers, stamps, or even art work!

Writing a memorable thank you note is about following a few well honored traditions, getting them out on time, avoiding easy "mistakes", keeping it short, sweet, and to the point, and finally adding your own touch. It doesn't have to be a big touch, but something little and personal is a good idea. Oh, and try having fun with it, it will make your life easier!


Submit a Comment
  • Pan's Pen profile image

    Pan's Pen 

    10 years ago

    Nice article, it really gives me some great ideas as I need to start writing thank-you notes for my open house.

  • Dame Scribe profile image

    Dame Scribe 

    10 years ago from Canada

    I have had to do Thank you cards for youth charities I volunteer at and agree, simple is best and greatly appreciated. :)

  • James A Watkins profile image

    James A Watkins 

    10 years ago from Chicago

    Well done and needful topic, too. It seems the art of the hand written note may be dying out but I hope not. They are great to send and great to receive. Your advice was top notch.


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