By Christine Song

The Best Stationery Sets You Need for Every Occasion


Beautiful, thoughtful, and ready for anything life throws at you.

Stationery sets are the perfect desk supply to have on hand for any and every moment of life that deserves attention and acknowledgment.

Is your friend expecting a baby? Know someone going through a rough time? Need to thank a family member for a gift or kind gesture?

A handwritten note is so personal, significant, and meaningful in this day of fleeting electronic messages. Nothing is too small or unworthy of a quick note, especially one written on a beautiful stationery set.

Having a stash of stationery sets at the ready makes writing your sentiments so easy and quick. You can easily buy individual cards throughout the year, but the convenience and bulk buying of stationery sets is efficient, easy, and streamlined. Plus you always have something lovely on hand when you need a card, rather than having to rush out and grab something at the last minute.

With all the beautiful options for stationery sets, whether personalized to an occasion or beautifully blank for anytime use, there’s no excuse for not staying stocked up on the ones you need.

Stocking up on stationery sets

You might be wondering what stationery sets will work for you and how many you should have on hand for the year ahead, especially if you’re making an effort to send more hand written notes than in years past.

Luckily for you, the great thing about stationery sets is that they never expire or go out of style. They’re always there, ready and waiting for you. You can buy one set or a few and use them until they run out, just replenishing as needed.

If you’re new to stationery sets, you can start out with a one-size-fits-all design that will work for any kind of occasion — a birthday card, thank you card, little note just to say hello, etc. This is an easy, fast, and affordable option if you’re not an expert and don’t want to invest in a million kinds of cards all at once.

However, if you’re especially dedicated to celebrating and recognizing all family and friend events this year with a handwritten note (or if you just love stationery sets and are looking to stock up!), give the activity below a try. This will help you figure out what kinds of stationery sets you need to buy and how many of each one you need.

  • Count the number of birthdays, holidays, and anniversaries you know you want to acknowledge this year. Go through your calendar and make a tally of every kind of occasion. How many birthdays? How many anniversaries?
  • Look at last year’s calendar. How many “other” kinds of occasions were there? How often did you meet with a contact you needed a thank you card? How often did you go to a wedding? How many people came to your birthday party and needed a thank you card?

Once you have a general idea of the kinds of occasions you have sent cards for in the past — plus what you expect to send this year for recurring events like birthdays — you can create a general estimate of what you’ll need for this year.

  • Do you have a lot of different kinds of events? Look for bulk, assorted stationery sets. You can get blank cards or a series of cards covering a variety of occasions like birthdays, thank yous, blanks, etc. If you need 30 birthday cards, but don’t see a bulk set you like, try buying 3 different stationery sets of 10 cards in the designs you love. These three from Paper Source are all festive and fun ideas: colorful pinatas, watercolor balloons, and a rainbow message with bouquet.
  • Do you have a lot of one specific event? This simple set of 48 cards comes with 6 different happy birthday designs. It’s nice to buy a bulk variety pack because it saves you time but keeps your recipients from all receiving the same card from you this year (which could be awkward if you’re sending cards to family members or coworkers who might see their matching cards!).
  • Do you have a few really special events? If you don’t have a ton of cards to send, but want them each to be really special, consider investing in a few really nice stationery sets. You can easily get a set of 10 cards for less than $20, but if you are only sending a few cards this year, think about upgrading your budget a little to get a set of cards with special features like really high quality paper, letterpress printing, or foil lettering.

Should you buy blank stationery sets?

Sometimes the prettiest stationery sets are blank (meaning there is no printed text) on the cover or inside. Blank stationery sets are so versatile and flexible — you can avoid buying a stationery set for every occasion if you have a good set of blank stationery.

This is great if you write a lot of thank you notes or other cards that are driven by your personalized message, as opposed to broadcasting a general message on the front flap.

But what if you’re not one for a lot of words or can never figure out what to say?

If that’s you, cards that say what you want them to on the front cover will ease the pressure a bit.

But don’t give up on the blank stationery set! There are ways to make it work for you.

For example, look for covers that pop and have a wow factor, taking some pressure off your words. And look for cards that are smaller in size and flat (don’t fold over like a traditional card). Less space to write means less unused space to feel awkward about if you’re struggling for words. Here are some great blank stationery set ideas for you:

  • Beautiful, flat notes with a simple, unobtrusive design are the perfect size for a quick message and won’t look awkward with fewer words – we think you’ll love the Colette Stationery Card Set for just these reasons.
  • Another flat note option that focuses on the envelope design, this beautiful, simple Bitsy Printed Envelope Set comes in a fresh, invigorating mint color.
  • Make a splash with beautiful florals on the Lively Floral Blank Card Set, which includes folded cards (not flat) to express any sentiment through the use of the 4 different colored backdrops.
  • And a vibrant, laser cut peacock design on the cover of this stationery is sure to impress for any occasion.

Individual stationery sets you need on hand

If you decide to venture slowly into the blank stationery set realm with just one set instead of buying in bulk, here are some of our top recommendations for each category of card you might need:

  • Saying thank you. When it comes to saying thank you, we love the Woodland Thank You Card Set’s floral design, beautiful colors, and elegant gold envelope. An equally beautiful and intricately designed card is the Rose Gold Thank You Card Set, the envy of all other thank you cards. But if you’re looking for something a little less flashy and florally, with an air of simple elegance, the Blackberry Thank You Card Set or Modern Thank You Card Set are winners.
  • Just because and thinking of you. These kinds of cards are such a joy to send and receive, especially to express gratitude and warm sentiments for no particular reason at all. The “smiled and thought of you” message on the Smile Flat Card Set will make your recipient feel so special. Or maybe tacos bring you and your friends joy; plan a just because taco night with this perfect Taco Time stationery. Lastly, this fun postcard says it all: “Better Than a Text, Cuter Than an Email.”
  • Happy anniversary. Celebrating anniversaries is an unexpected delight for your recipients. It takes some remembering on your part, but imagine how it would feel if others remembered and recognized yours? Whether it’s a wedding, dating, friendship, work, or other special day in history to remember, try this lovely Happy Anniversary Boxed Set with a beautiful floral design and foil stamp.
  • Explore sets that contain assorted messages in one box, that can quickly fill a void in a bind or give you just a few of the most common messages. The Bouquet Assorted Card Set fits the bill; it comes with 2 cards each in 4 different designs, covering you for those popular occasions: Thank You, Congrats, Happy Birthday, and Wishing You Comfort. Another fun option is to personalize this blank fern card on the inside by following the prompt on the cover that reads “A Note to Say.” Versatile and colorful!

If you’re a pro, make the leap to personalized stationery sets

Personalized stationery sets are a fun alternative to blank stationery sets. Adding your name or initials, or a simple design to stationery can take beautiful blank stationery and turn it into something a touch more unique and personal. Rifle Paper’s personalized stationery flat notes, like Midnight Floral and Monogram Floral, are unique and make a statement. And websites like Shutterfly allow you to personalize stationery sets even further with your own photos. For example, this assorted stationery set option allows you to mix and match 4 styles.

A beautiful, handwritten card can convey thoughtfulness and care unmatched by other methods, so keep your stationery sets stocked, filled, and ready to go!