If you’ve ever wondered how people like Jane Austen used to fold their letters, then you’re in the right place! Listed below are some instructions for a quick and easy Regency letter folding technique, plus a bonus video version at the end.
Once upon a time, paper was very expensive. So, to save on costs, people would avoid using separate envelopes to send their letters in. Instead, they would simply fold the letter itself into an envelope – to save on costs and also to keep their words private from prying eyes.
Here’s how they did it…
Tutorial: Quick & Easy Regency Letter Folding Technique
This is one of several ways you can fold a Regency style letter. I like to use this particular technique as it’s quick and easy to remember, produces a good size letter and none other than Jane Austen herself used this method. So, that’s good enough for me!
What You’ll Need:
- Paper (any paper will do, but parchment paper would be super fancy and more authentic to the Regency period)
- Wax seal kit or pre-made wax seal (optional)
Regency Letter Folding Instructions
Once you’ve finished writing your top-secret letter, follow these steps to fold it up into an envelope shape… just like Jane Austen would’ve done.
Step 1. Turn your letter landscape.
Step 2. Fold the paper in half width-ways, but don’t actually crease the paper! Simply pinch the top corner and open your paper back out again. You should now see a pinch mark at the top of your paper indicating where the centre is.
Step 3. Fold one side of the paper into the middle to meet your pinch mark.
Step 4. Fold the other side of the paper into the middle in the exact same way.
Step 5: Fold the top down to make your envelope flap.
Note: It’s up to you how much you fold over for this part. I like to go with about 2 inches, so that my wax seal is in the middle of the envelope when I’m finished. But you could go with an inch instead if preferred. You can see the difference between the two in the photo below.
Step 6: Tuck the bottom of your paper into the flap you’ve just made and fold the bottom. You should now have something that resembles an envelope.
Step 7: (Optional) Finish with a wax seal, sticker or other embellishments.
Tip: If you don’t want to have to break the seal when opening the letter, then glue a pre-made wax seal on instead. Glue the top half only onto the envelope flap and then you can open the letter over and over again without the need to break the seal or rip the paper.
Bonus Tip: If you’re using your Regency style letters in a junk journal, then you can also hide ephemera inside your letter such as a postcard, stickers, tickets and any other paper ephemera that’ll fit inside.
Not only would these letters look great as journal ephemera, but they’d also be perfect as cute love letters to send to your other half. Especially if you use a heart stamp for your wax seal like I did for mine.
Watch the video version:
If you’d rather watch the video version of this Regency letter folding technique, then here you go:
And if you liked this tutorial, why not bookmark it or share it with a friend?