How to: Write a sincere thank you note

posted on: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Growing up after every christmas and birthday my mother forced us kids to sit around and write thank you notes to everyone who had given us anything.  I can honestly say this is something I excelled at, even then.  I have always relished in thanking someone in stationary form (it seems so permanent!).   If I missed an opportunity thanking someone, I would be totally mortified!  I have even had people send me thank you notes about my thank you notes before!

Recently someone asked me on formspring if I could write a post about "how to write all of those wedding thank you notes" and I thought - I can indeed help this girl!  So this  post will specifically address writing thank you notes for a wedding gift.  

First things first, Buy some pretty stationary!  It's no secret I love pretty personalized stationary.  For my wedding, my photographer designed a set that included our engagement photos.  I love it when couples have their stationer make them to match their entire stationary suite too!  It keeps their theme going strong and can give them a little peek into what the wedding tone will be like.  I look to Rifle, Minted, Etsy, Wiley Valentine for my thank you notes.  

Send it as soon as you receive the gift.  If you need a few days, fine.  If on the off chance you just haven't gotten around to it for several weeks - don't bury it in the back of your mind.  Write it.  A tardy thank you note is still appreciated!

If you're like me in anyway, the reality is that you'll be the one writing the thank you letters.  I believe my husband wrote a grand total of ... 2.  Which was perfectly fine with me... like I said, I actually love this kind of thing and ok, i like to be in control a little a lot.  But if you don't enjoy it, definitely enlist your (future) spouse to help.   
Just make sure you're on the same page.  

Now you can get to writing.  Make sure you have a good pen! Grab a cup of tea and some dark chocolate to nibble on ... and set a goal.  i.e.: i will finish 15 thank you notes tonight!

Put the date in the top right corner, then after the Salutation... Express gratitude.  Say thank you for what they specifically gave you.  If it was a tangible item, tell them how the two of you plan to use it.  This shouldn't be hard, you most likely registered for the item.  If it was money (don't address the amount, just the generosity), how will you spend it?  or what will you be saving for?  

If they made their way to your wedding, they likely spent a boatload of time, money, and energy getting there.  Express how thankful you are they could make it!  It should mean a lot to you that people would get on a plane or drive across the state, and sleep in a hotel to witness your marriage.  

Lastly, mention how great it was to see them at the wedding ... or if the wedding hasn't happened yet, how you look forward to visiting with them.  If they can't make it to the wedding, just say how you look forward to meeting or seeing each other soon.  

A couple of closings I use:  Warmly //  Every Blessing // With love and gratitude 

Close with both of your names!  You're a team now.  and forever!  

Hope this might have helped someone if they're stumped by what to write!  I've heard some people just clam up - it's just so much!  how do you thank them with a single letter?!  Be sincere, personal, and thankful and you really can't go wrong.  

6 love letters:

  1. Quite helpful, Sarah! I like your philosophy on TY notes . :)

  2. I wish more people considered 'thank you' notes to have value (for any occasion, not just weddings)! Another stationery company I wanted to point out is Walnut Paperie ( They are dolls with great taste!

  3. Great post! I am not as prompt on my thank you's as I used to be but I still get them done. I am currently being tested on my thank you skills as I have a baby on the way and have been trying to write them as gifts come my way. Thank you for the timely reminder on the importance of thank you notes and the extra motivation to get some written tonight!

  4. What a great post! And I have to agree with you...I really enjoy writing thank you notes myself! I will be sure to pass this post along to all the wonderful friends I have that are getting married this summer! Thank you for sharing!


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