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Here’s how to make your own Hogwarts Acceptance Letters for someone special:
You will need:
White Printer Paper and White Envelopes (square envelopes are more realistic)
Tea bags or Coffee Grounds
2 Cookie Sheets
(and stamps to mail your letter with…if you decide to mail them)
For the first page and second page of the letter I used the font Magik. For Minerva McGonagall’s signature I used Parry Hotter. For the third page, I left Percy’s signature alone and for the font of everything else I used Witches Magic because I wanted the wording to be legible. You can use whichever font you desire.
You will also want to use a very legible font on the envelope so it gets to the right place!!
**Remember to change the dates on the first page!**
UPDATE: Since writing this post, the fonts I originally used to make the letters (except for Parry Hotter) have been deleted from the site listed above. Please use whichever fonts you would like instead from the ones available!
2. Print your letter on the white paper and print the envelope template with the person’s address onto a white envelope.
3. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.
4. To dye the paper, you can either use tea or coffee. Tea will always come out lighter looking than the coffee when dry.
FOR TEA: Steep tea bags in about 1 cup to 2 cups of water until it’s strong enough. Pour the tea onto a cookie sheet. It should be deep enough to cover a sheet of paper. Lay the paper into the tea and make sure to soak the paper completely. VERY CAREFULLY (because the paper can tear easily) pick the paper up by two edges and flip over to coat other side. Then once again very carefully pick the paper up, let any excess tea drip off for a second, and then lay the paper on another cookie sheet. Place cookie sheet in oven and leave until the paper is completely dry, which will take about 3-5 minutes.
If you feel the color isn’t strong enough on the paper (although you wont be able to properly tell until it’s dry), give it another dip in the tea bath or make a new batch of stronger tea.
FOR COFFEE: I used instant coffee for mine. Add instant coffee to the same amount of water listed above or depending on how much you need. You can also brew coffee in a pot first, but let it cool before beginning. Do the same exact thing you would have done if using tea, by pouring coffee on a cookie sheet and laying the paper in it. Remember to cover both sides and let drip off for an even color.
If you want the blotchy look, you can use a ball of paper towel or a sponge, dip it in the tea or coffee and then dab the paper that way. If you dont do both sides, one side will look somewhat darker than the other side. (See Below.)
If you want the edges to be teared a bit (say, like a treasure map) very gently rub the edge of the paper while the paper is still wet (and laying flat on the cookie sheet) until you remove the amount you want off. When it bakes it will look very nice. I didn’t do this because Hogwarts letters aren’t ripped at the edges, but you might like it better that way or want to use that technique in the future for another project. You can also use a lighter after the paper is dry and carefully burn the edges a bit. **Kids, DO NOT attempt this by yourself without adult supervision!!**
I tried out 3 different staining techniques to see what happened. Out of all of them, the technique I described above is the best way to stain the paper, by dipping it completely in the tea/coffee. I will show you the results of the others anyway.
For the first paper, I dabbed it with a paper towel but DID NOT dab the other side. One side was darker than the other and the overall color was lighter.
For the second paper, I dabbed one side and then halfway during it’s drying time I flipped it over and dabbed the other. This created a very blotchy, uneven look.
And lastly, I used the dipping technique for the third paper which created the best look (uniform color, but darker).
Do the same dipping technique for the envelope. The envelope is the hardest to do because it will crinkle a bit and may not dry evenly. Make sure when you dip the envelope you do it with the flap out and not laying flat in a closed position. I poured a little coffee inside the envelope to make sure I covered everything. NOTE: Wetting the envelope with the coffee/tea activates the adhesive! Don’t lay the flap adhesive-side down on the cookie sheet or it will stick to it when drying. Lay it face down instead or stick something under the flap to hold it up if you lay it face up!
I used a fake address for the example below:
How to finish your letters:
Once everything is dry, you can put your letter in an envelope and seal it up. Since the adhesive on the envelope is pretty much ruined at this point, seal it with liquid Elmer’s glue. I don’t put return addresses on the envelopes when I make them to add to the mystery.
If you want to make it fancy, use a Harry Potter Sealing Wax Kit, Owl Post Postage Stamps, Peel and Stick Hogwarts Crests, DIY Acceptance Letter Kits, Owl Post Rubber Stamps, tie some packing twine around the envelope, or if you’re planning on making a visit to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter anytime soon, have it stamped with their postmark.
If you’re lazy, buy Acceptance Letters already made. You can also just print the template onto parchment paper bought from an office supply store.
This is a very nice idea for any Harry Potter fan, or for a child’s 11th birthday. Of course, it can be used at any age just to impress someone you know. 😉 You can also just stick it in a friend’s mailbox without having to mail, as well, or use as birthday invites.
Have fun and be creative! 🙂