MINIATURE FOLDER STEP-BY-STEP TUTORIAL
This mini folder will be a final size of about 5 x 7 inches because that’s my most used size personally, when writing to penpals. It’s big enough that I can fit everything I want to without it being too bulky. A standard sized photo it fits very nicely in the folder, plus the letter, and any little goodies.
You can get a nice, big, pretty piece of paper like this from any craft store. Michael’s and Joann both sell individual sheets for under one dollar each. 12 x 12 inch is the perfect size and the folders are even cuter if you can find a sheet that’s double sided.
I had a request for this tutorial after sharing a photo of some snail mail I sent in this post, if you want to check it out, I used paper with double sided patterns (linked here).
MINI FOLDER SUPPLY LIST:
- 12 x 12 sheet of paper
- Ruler (my favorite)
- Bone folder (or something to help you crease the page)
- Tape runner or glue
Before you start, if you are using a one-sided sheet, you of course want to make sure to consider which way you want the folder to face. The pattern on the folder interior could be really fun, plus that gives you more space to decorate the front and back of the mini folder.
If you are using a thicker cardstock paper you might also want to cut down on the bulk. I generally only cut down the overlaps in this case. If the paper is thinner it is easy to adhere and fits into the envelope with no problem.
Suggested: What to Send to Your Penpal and What to Write in Your Snail Mail
The rough mini folder measurements are below for you. I’m a visual person with this sort of thing but I will try and explain it as well. Let me know in the comments if anything is unclear.
Cut your 12 x 12 sheet of paper down to about 10.75 x 10 inches. You want an almost square. The wider portion we will fold inward to make the inside edges of the folder (about 1 cm in on each side).
Once you have folded the edges in you should be left with a 10 inch square.
Now fold the whole page in half, be careful of the pattern on your paper and make sure it will line up the way you want it to.
The inside of the folder should be facing up when you open it back up.
Fold the bottom portion up a little less than 3 inches. This bottom fold will be the pockets of the folder so I usually make mine about 7 cm tall.
Use the center fold (from step 2) as a guide to cut a small triangle out of the center.
Glue everything down. I use a tape runner for this because it gives a good hold but none of the gooeyness of traditional glue.
You’ll see that I sometimes make my pockets by cutting down the center fold and and sometimes I leave it alone, this is just preference. For snail mail I usually decorate these envelopes to hold my mini folders. They fit really well and are sturdy enough to hold up well in the mail machines.