Free Envelopes: How to Reuse a Return Envelope




Introduction: Free Envelopes: How to Reuse a Return Envelope

About: Be limited only by your imagination.

I get at least a dozen return envelopes each week with bills, solicitations and just general junk mail.  I came up with a quick way to reuse them and this saves money because you don't buy envelopes and you keep a bit of paper out of the landfill.  In fact, it makes getting junk mail slightly less annoying.  It's really simple!  Now, you could take a piece of paper and glue it on top of the old envelope.  Shame, Shame, Shame!  Tacky, Tacky, Tacky!  Here's the way the cool kids do it.  You basically deconstruct the envelope and then reconstruct it inside out.  You use the original gummed seal on the inside instead of outside of the envelope and voila, you have a nice looking clean envelope.  Let's start.

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Step 1: Deconstruct the Old Envelope

Take your envelope and gently peel the sides away.

Step 2: Fold and Glue the Sides While Turning the Envelope Inside Out

fold the side flaps in.  Put some glue from a glue stick or white glue or scotch tape to fasten the sides.

Step 3: When You Are Ready to Use It, Lick the Gummed Side and Put It on the Inside.

The gummed side goes inside versus the traditional outside.  Then just address and stamp it and use it.  I've done this for years and I've never had one open on me.  My friends like getting them because they like to see what's on the inside.  

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    4 Discussions


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Been recycling those return envelopes for a long time -- what we couldn't find a reuse for. Never thought of turning them inside out. Brilliant!


    6 years ago on Introduction

    What a Great Idea!! I'm going to start using your idea. Thank you for a creative way to keep paper out of the landfill.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks HollyHarken. It's nice of you to say that. I would like to get to the point where the ratio was 3/4 reuse/recycle to 1/4 landfill.