the art of the thank you note

// card // 

Good writing looks easy, but anyone who has attempted to write something as simple as a thank you note knows that is isn't. Sometimes a simple formula makes it a lot easier. When I write reviews of people I know that my formula is essentially...

area of improvement

aka a compliment sandwich. 

I've always thought the ability to write a well-written thank you note, is one thing I definitely want to teach my kids. In a world of email and texting people really appreciate a thoughtful, sincere handwritten note. However, I've never really had a formula for how to write them. As Judge Stewart would say, "I know it when I see it." 

So, I was thrilled when last month's issue of Harper's Bazaar featured an essay on the importance of thank you notes. The author, Samantha Boardman, breaks down what her mother deemed were the five elements of a good thank you note. 

1. Thank the person for the gift.
2. Describe what it will be used for and why you are especially grateful for it. 
3. Make a reference to a recent event in the person's life ("I hope your trip to Biarritz was wonderful").
4. Mention something positive that is going on in your life ("We have had the most enjoyable Christmas here in Palm Beach") never overusing the pronoun "I."
5. Thank the person again for the thoughtful present and tell them that you hope to see them soon.

Perhaps this is worth Pinning for the next time you sit down to write your own. I know I will. 


P.S. Some of the most delightful greeting cards I have ever seen.