Do I Have To Use Stationery I Got As A Gift?


Hi Annabel,
I recently received a gift of some very pretty note cards and am getting ready to write a thank you note for them, but it made me stop and think about this question that I’ve had before.
When someone gives you a gift of stationery or cards, do you use their gift to write the thank you note so they see that you are using the gift? Or should you use other cards you already have because they didn’t intend for you to give their gift right back to them which almost seems like “wasting it?”
I figured if anyone knew the more appropriate thing to do, it would be you!
Hi E,
Excellent question – I’ve wondered about this myself. I always seem to have three tiers of stationery to choose from at any given time (good, better, and best) and I make choices based on the occasion and the recipient.
Luckily, in this case you really can’t lose. The important thing is that you’re writing the thank-you note in the first place. From an etiquette point of view, you’re covered.
Having said that, I think it’s very thoughtful to use your new stationery for this purpose. That way, the person can see how much you’re enjoying it — and gets to admire his or her own handiwork from a different point of view.
However, you shouldn’t feel pressured to use your gift every time you correspond with this person. Once is enough!
Graciously yours,
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