A thank you from Ms. Post

Remembering to say please and thank you is the first step to any kind of etiquette, right? Well, the opportunity to write thank you notes arrives way too frequently. This either means we are spoiled rotten and surrounded by fabulous people or... well, no, we are just spoiled rotten and surrounded by fabulous people. That is a FACT. Regardless of what instigates a hand written thank you, {be it a job interview, a birthday gift, a slew of wedding presents or a special outing with a special friend} they can easily slip off our to-do lists, especially in this day in age where we could just shoot off a thank you text or email! We are here to remind you that it is WORTH taking the extra time to hand write a thank you. How many pieces of "personal" mail have you received via USPS in the last week? And how many "personal" emails have you received. Point made... getting a thank you card in the mail is straight up classy and makes us all feel special. Our etiquette icon, Emily Post addresses (pun intended) some of the most common questions people have about writing thank you notes. We found them to be insightful and hope that you do too...

Before you start...

Remember that thanking people needs to be about just that: expressing thanks. So refocus, reorganize, and rethink the process. Get in touch with the sincerity of thanking people for thinking about you and sending you something—even if it’s a hot pink polyester sweater.

Who needs a note?

All gifts should be acknowledged with a note, unless the goodies were opened in front of the giver—then you have the chance to thank them in person.  An important exception: many of an older generation expect a hand-written note. Providing them with one is an appropriate gesture of respect and consideration.

When should thank-you notes be written?

Write your notes as soon as possible, and don’t hesitate if you feel you’re late: a late note is always better than no note at all.

Can a thank-you note be creative?

Absolutely. Incorporating photos, children’s drawings... anything at all that compliments the sentiment is appropriate. Just remember to include a short written thank-you as well.

Will an e-mail suffice?

The reality of email thank-you’s, much like email itself, is a degree of emotional distance: an email to your grandmother is simply not as personal as a note written in your own hand. So if you have a casual relationship with the gift giver and you correspond via email regularly, an email thank-you may be appropriate. For most other people, the written thank-you is your best bet for an expression of warm, heartfelt thanks. The last thing you want is for someone to be disappointed when her hand-knit scarf is acknowledged with a loud, animated e-card.

How do I make writing thank-you notes fun?

Break up the list and schedule a few different days to write your note. Each time give yourself a little something to make it interesting: music, a glass of wine, your favorite radio show, a cup of tea—perhaps even some chocolate. Take the time to yourself for writing out thank-you notes: don’t try and wedge it in between laundry, a TV show and extra work from the office. You’ll be able to think more clearly and your focus will translate to the page. Above all, try to enjoy yourself. Giving thanks shouldn’t be a chore—and doesn’t have to be if you make the effort to keep it interesting.

We think the fun starts with cute stationery... of course! If you have a large amount of notes to send out from a wedding, anniversary or large party, consider having a custom "Thank you" post card made. One side can include pictures from your event while the other side can share a general sentiment while still leaving room for a couple of sentences and signatures. Badda - bing - badda - boom! What a sweet way to save time and people will love them!

*Photos courtesy of Laura Ashbrook Photography