diy {sewn notecards}

Someone once told me that sending thank you cards is a southern thing. Is that true? I find it very hard to believe and am pretty sure that can’t be right. I’m a firm believer in sending a hand written note to say ‘thank you’….that is why is kills me that I have become HORRIBLE at it. Honestly, it is ridiculous how bad I am at sending them. When something arrives in the mail or a gift is given, on the inside I am so grateful and have full intentions of sending a note of gratitude. Then something distracts me. Then something else distracts me. Then so many other somethings distract me, it never happens.

FireCracker’s hospital stay ordeal was in April. 5 months ago. While we were there, we were overwhelmed by the kindness of others. I know our friends didn’t support us and shower us with thoughtfulness because they wanted a thank you card, but I wanted them to know my gratitude. It took me until June to finally write notes. Some were hand delivered. Others have been waiting for stamps and addresses. They are still waiting:

How sad is that? It is at a point now where I wonder if too much time has passed. However, I don’t think it is ever too late to say “thank you.” I’m getting all those cards mailed out this week. I’ve also come up with a game plan for the future. It begins with a stack of cards ready to go (inspired by these by Oh, hello friend).


  • Blank cards {mine are from Hobby Lobby, used a 40% off coupon}
  • Fabric scraps {you want something with light colors, I used a vintage sheet…check out The Stash & JaneSays Vintage for vintages sheets}
  • Thin lace or trim {mine was scored at a garage sale}
  • Small letter stamps and ink pad


Step 1: cut your fabric like little flags

Step 2: stamp “thanks”….you aren’t washing these so it doesn’t matter that the ink isn’t made for fabric

Step 3: Using a medium length stitch (too small can make the card tear easily), attach the trim and fabric. I did not space between my cards, just kept going. Once I was done, I cut in between the cards…this made it go a lot faster than cutting thread on each card as I went.

I also picked up a recipe box from Hobby Lobby. Inside are my cards, envelopes and stamps. In my ideal world, as soon as it crosses my mind to write a note, I’ll do it then…not 5 months later. The recipe box will get decorated eventually, but right now I’ve got it all together to at least attempt to be better at expressing my gratitude to others.


By the way, thanks for the suggestions for how to make my blog better…it was great insight from you and I appreciate it!

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  • Carol - What a fun idea. . .thanks for the inspiration!

  • Jessica @ Two Shades of Pink - These are simply lovely. I too have become awful at sending thank you’s (and no I don’t think it is JUST a southern thing. You have inspired me to GET ON IT and be more organized. πŸ™‚

  • Katie @ explanationrequired - Ha! I’m the same way. My daughter’s birthday party was at the end of May and I think I still have some thank you notes that we planned on hand delivering that we never got around to. Thanks for the reminder to go ahead and put them in the mail!

    P.S. Pinning this to my Vintage Sheets board ( Great idea!!

  • amanda torres - That is pretty smart, and some pretty good future planning!

  • lindsey - so cute! where did you get your stamps?

  • Yanet of 3 Sun Kissed Boys - If it makes you feel any better, I made a sympathy card for a friend and it has now been 3 years since her husband’s passing and I never mailed it. πŸ™

    Your cards are adorable. it doesn’t help that people like us can’t just buy a card and mail it. We have to MAKE something and then make it look all spiffy.

  • Loren - These are the cutest thing. Great idea.
    I’m also really bad at sending Thank You cards. But my BFs mother does it all the time and it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside so I’ve been trying to send more.

  • Katie R. - sewn notecards are my fav! I’m kind of obsessed with them right now πŸ™‚

  • Krista Lund - this would make a wonderful gift- stamps and all!

  • Kristin - i love sending thank you cards – and those are beautiful!

  • Kaytie - What a super cute project! I like the idea of displaying the cards so that they’re always easily accessible in your home. Plus you make me feel like I could whip these out and have them done TODAY! πŸ™‚

  • Corey Moortgat - Really cute idea! I’ve become terrible about thank you cards as well. I always prided myself that I did it, but I’ve just gotten worse and worse… ugh!

  • cailan - I’m thinking about hand-written notes today, too. But I’m the same as you – the thanks is written all over my thoughts when I receive the kindness, but it seems to take an herculean effort for those thoughts to make it to paper. Adorable little box and notes!

  • amber - I need to do this. I am also terrible at thank you card sending. I usually get them all made, filled out & even addressed, just can’t seem to get them to the post office to buy stamps. Then, after months of waiting, I either give up or embarrassingly mail them. Glad to hear I’m not the only one. Great project for me! Thanks Ashley:)…wondering why I’ve never thought of it myself…

  • able mabel - Oh what a fun idea! Thanks!

  • Caitriona - I love the way you share your love through what you do and make:~)

  • Jeannette - I’m a big fan of hand written thank you notes and like to make my own – yours are so cute – I’ll have to whip some out to have on hand. They would be a nice little gift for someone too.

  • Rebecca - I love giving and getting thank you notes. My only request is that they are hand written. So much of my life’s correspondence is digital from e-mail to texts. I made a promise to myself that whenever a thank you is in order, it must be hand written. Lovely idea thank you for sharing.

  • Ranee - Love it! I just heard a devotional this morning about the value of sending REAL letters and how we are called to encourage others. I just might make some “just because” cards.

  • Minnesotamom - Cute cards! I was raised in a town in MN just a little over an hour from the Canadian border, and my mother staunchly taught me that every kindness shown is answered with a hand-written thank you note. So no, it is not solely Southern. πŸ™‚

  • Darcy - Those are adorable, as usual! I’m from the NW and my Momma was very adamant that thank you cards be sent out every Christmas, Birthday, etc. So now I have a stack similar to yours – ready for when I need to say thank you. Now what to do with all the adorable ones I received? πŸ™‚

  • mindee - thank you notes are NOT a southern thing! I’m from the midwest and have always been taught to write a thank you note. I love sending notes just because, too. Who doesn’t love getting ‘old fashioned’ mail? Cute tutorial

  • Savannah - Not just a southern thing! I live in Northern California, possibly the most liberal non-southern (just physically…like across the states!) place in the entire united states…and it was drilled into me by my mother (also, from northern california) from the time I could hold a pencil or pen. For my birthdays before I could write on my own she would make me draw pictures and she would send the thank you note! SO no it is not just a southern thing, I fully endorse it and will probably drill it into my own children! It takes only minutes after all and the gift-giver deserves a thank you!!

  • Kate - This is crazy, but writing thank you notes is exactly what I’m doing this morning, and I just realized I put the stamps on the opposite corner. What was I thinking?! I, too, am guilty of getting handwritten notes done late and then having quite a stack months later waiting on stamps or addresses. Thanks for encouraging me this morning. Any tips for the stamp issue? Ha.

  • Katie - Oooh, I am totally digging these. Thanks Ashley!

    I’ve also been perusing your Pinterest boards lately and I just have to say–I love your style.

    Thanks so much for all you share!

  • heather - these are so lovely!!!
    and such a great idea to have them on hand.

  • heather - these are so lovely!!!
    and such a great idea to have them on hand.

  • carina@a punk, a pumpkin and a peanut - I just made a bunch of cards similar to this last week! Yours are so so so cute. Love them.

  • Joan M - Thank you for this idea for thank you cards. Yes, I do still send thank you cards – I’m from Reno, Nevada, so I guess it’s not just southern. I even still send Christmas cards with handwritten notes.

  • Lisa Pummel - Nope, not a southern thing. I send thank you cards and I’m from Denver. And I completely think they are still necessary! It’s such a simple gesture, but it’s so nice to receive one. Bravo for sticking to it, even if they are a bit late!

  • Becs - Not a southern thing, I’m in the UK and I send thank you notes – although I think it is an increasingly ‘old-fashioned’ thing as email seems to be more common. Love these cards, thank you for the how-to, will definitely be having a go at them.

  • Jenna - Love this idea! I think I’ll be making a trip to the craft store tonight to get supplies to make my own πŸ™‚

  • Jamie - I lOVE that idea. Simple and pretty. I know only the very basics of sewing- so I think I can handle this one!

  • Erin - Southern or not… thank you cards are a must in my book! Love the cute cards! Keeping a stash on hand always helps to motivate! And especially when they are as cute as yours!

  • Jennifer - I feel the same way about hand written cards. I’ve been surprised by the amount of teenagers who I have given gifts to and I don’t receive a card. I know it’s not about the card but I think it’s a nice life skill to have. Your cards are so cute. I just grab cards I like at the store – yours are much nicer.

  • Jenn - I’m from WI and I definitely don’t think it’s a southern thing! Although I will say that sadly I don’t receive as many as I would hope. Seems like doesn’t seem to be important to some.

  • Laura - I’m a midwest girl and I LOVE a good thank you note. I collect mine when I see them on sale at stores. I usually have enough on hand, though my organization is lacking. thanks for the inspiration!

  • Nicole - These are beautiful, Ashley! I just happen to have all of these materials in my stash. I think I’ll make some this week.

  • nicole - Cute! Thanks for sharing! πŸ™‚

  • Crystal - Perfect timing!! I have been feeling awful about not getting out thank you notes for some late baby gifts from several months ago! Same thing here, I always get distracted! So, thanks for the nudge I needed and to put out some easy access cards for the future! By the way, I didn’t comment on your post about how God blew you away with the online snap shop for the adoption. BUT, HE IS AMAZING! Um, let me say it again. A. MAZ. ING. Amazing Grace. I’m sure you’ve heard it a thousand times since, but He can never be praised enough! Oh, the blessings we could see if we would just ask and believe!! We are in the same trusting boat, but within different circumstances. I can’t wait to see what He will deliver. πŸ™‚ Thanks for offering your blog as a place of inspiration and encouragement!

  • Nicole - so cute!

  • Nancy - Writing thank you notes is not just a Southern thing, I live in Arizona and still write thank you notes. I prefer this method over a phone call or email, because I love to get things in the mail (besides bills and junk mail) and I assume others do to. I read somewhere in some etiquette column (I think I read it in the Good Housekeeping Magazine’s etiquette column) that you can take up to a year to write thank you notes for occasions such a Wedding’s, Showers, Etc.; so you are way ahead of the game. The cards are such a cute idea and my mind is already spinning, I have a ton of scrap fabrics lying around the house!! Thanks for the tidbit.

  • Jessica Winter - We write them here in WA too. πŸ™‚

  • Karen - Adorable! Thank you for sharing the idea! I will definitely try this one! πŸ™‚

  • Amy @ dwell in the season - These are adorable! I love them! And great idea, I need to keep my notes OUT and VISIBLE! πŸ™‚

  • Lorena - Hi Ashley,

    what a gorgeous idea – I love it! Will definitely try this craft project. I have a little suggestion for your blog. It would be great if there is a print version of your craft projects so that we at home can print it and therefore be able to refer to it anytime without switching the PC on. What do you think? Is that a good idea?


  • stylefyles - Not a southern thing. I’m from CT, and the practice of writing thank you cards was instilled in me from a young age. My parents are from Ohio and upstate New York, also not southerners (and their parents are from the same areas, so no southern heritage here). I still write Thank You’s to this day.

  • Stayday - Great idea- I have the same stamps but wouldn’t think to use them on fabric!

  • Sarah - I don’t think they’re a solely southern thing, because the closest I’ve come to the south is Texas…and I know that doesn’t count. I think it’s a dying art, left to those who are more old fashioned, which my family happens to be. I hope to continue it on in my family, because I know in my generation (early 20’s) it’s all but dead.

  • Amy - SO cute! Also, if you were wondering in the midwest handwritten thank you notes are still being used, still encouraged, and still appreciated. I think it is more of a good manners gesture than anything. Better late than never!

  • Leah Jones - a thank you note is better late than never! I know all about being late with thanks….I recently bought a writing desk for that sole purpose, to have an organized spot to write a note! let’s hope it works. love your cute card πŸ™‚

  • Kina from Joretta Natural Knits - This is a grea idea for Christmas cards too!!!

  • Tamara - I live in austria, and I have to admit, I would never write a thank you card and i basically never received one.. it just totally uncommon here, ‘though I find it a really nice way to show that youre thankful. but i dont know if i should start that, people are already stunned that i write christmas cards πŸ˜‰

  • Meghan - Those are so cute.

    I was born and raised in Georgia, and I still live here, and NO- thank you notes are not just a southern thing.

    I think what it is is that southerners hold onto-and even treasure- our traditional values and etiquette quite a bit, and sending thank you notes is something that a lot of people are losing the custom of doing. In the South, most mamas still teach their children the importance of thank you notes- after any gift is received.

    I know a girl who decided, along with her husband, that Thank You notes were an unnecessary thing after their wedding. I felt bad for her mama, because in a way, it makes HER look bad- like she didn’t teach her daughter common courtesy. I would have been so embarrassed. And if thanking a person for a gift seems unnecessary, then the groom and bride should have also let everyone know GIFTS were unnecessary.

    But I certainly don’t think courtesy is limited to the south. Like you, I write thank you notes and then forget to stamp them and mail them. I’m so embarrassed when I drop them in the mail a month late! But better late than never. Your notes are too cute!

  • Josephine - ooooooooooh. this is perfect to remind me of my super overdue project and that is to send ‘thank you’ cards too. thank you for the inspiration too ashley! x

  • Kristin S - Darling!

    I agree with so many above.

    I was raised in Boston and have been in the South since 1983. I was just as expected by my mother to write thank you notes in the North as in the South.

    It SEEMS a generational thing now that is fading away sadly. I sent my best friend’s daughter a hs graduation gift in May and still wonder if she received it. That’s where my glitch is: at least acknowledge receipt of a gift.

    And I don’t think it is ever too late to send a thank you note.

  • amy jupin - totally stealing this one.
    and yep, thank yous are definitely southern.
    but i think it’s a sweet and meaningful gesture.
    southern or not.

  • Marsha - These cards are adorable and so simply made. I love your photos and I look forward to seeing more of your DIY projects.
    My grandson plays soccer and I adore watching those little sweaty guys running around the field and just plain enjoying every moment. Thank you for reminding me of it.

  • Kelly - Um, just this very week I sent some thank you notes that were far, far less punctual than yours because thank you is important no matter when but boy was I embarrassed! Kelly

  • Kristina L - One time when I was a young teen, somebody did something small but kind for me. As I was contemplating whether or not I should send a thank you card, my dad told me “Gratitude is never out-of-place.” This saying has stuck with me throughout the years, and when in doubt, I try to err on the side of gratitude. (And by the way, I’m from the north!)

    These notecards are so cute! I think having a stack of them around would definitely make the writing process a lot more fun.

  • Simple Saturday Tutorials - […] Sewn Notecards via Under the Sycamore […]

  • Amy - This is such a great, and easy, project, thank you for the idea!

  • Anneliese - Saw these on TipJunkie and had to pop over. Just beautiful! I am a big believer in thank you notes as well, and also not as on top of it as I should be! Horrors. It is certainly more motivating to get right on them if you have some beautiful DIY ones to send.

  • kim h. - Here is my version of your notecards.

    so simple… why didn’t I think of that!?

  • TEAM CRAFTWELL - Wonderful idea! would be great for a gift!

    Team Craftwell

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  • Laurence - Beautiful! I really love the way you add a touch of color and texture with the fabric. Thank you for sharing… BTW, your tutorial is very easy to follow. Thanks you!

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  • Katrina - Thanks for a GREAT tutorial! I share it on my blog: