Thank You Note Etiquette

Hand written thank you notes represent a time-honored, tremendously important art, and one of my favorite etiquette traditions. So you can master this custom, here is everything you need to know about thank you notes!

Occasions for Sending
Pray tell, why send a thank you note? Aside from practicing your penmanship and having a spectacular excuse to purchase luxurious paper goods (my vice!), sending a thank you note shows gratitude and appreciation for whatever lovely gesture someone has done for you. It signifies more than putting pen to paper – it’s taking that extra thoughtful step. Also, while better later than never, strive to send it within two weeks of receiving the gift, gesture, etc. So, the million-dollar question: When do you need to send a thank you note?

  • If someone has so generously given you a gift (e.g. wedding, birthday, Christmas, etc.)
  • If someone has interviewed you for a job
  • If someone has graciously done you a favor
  • If someone has hosted you in their home
  • If someone has invited you to an event (i.e., they treated you to a concert or play)

Foolproof Thank You Note Formula
Follow this formula for a foolproof thank you:

  • Line 1: Address the person with “Dear”, i.e., “Dear Paige,”
  • Line 2: Open the note by thanking them for the gift, gesture, etc. “Thank you for the wonderful cookbook, it was so thoughtful of you.”
  • Line 3: Let them know that you are enjoying the gift and what it means to you. “I adore the Barefoot Contessa, and have loved learning new recipes from this amazing cookbook. I recently made the roasted chicken and it was delicious!”
  • Line 4: Close the note with a final thank you. “Thank you so much again for the beautiful gift, and I look forward to seeing you soon.”
  • Line 5: Sign the note with a salutation and your name, with the salutation depending upon your closeness with the recipient. If it’s a dear friend or family member, most sign it “Love,” where as if it’s a work colleague or acquaintance it’s recommended to sign it “Fondly,” “Best,” or “Warmest Wishes.”
Addressing ABC’s
Here’s a quick guide to follow:
  • The recipient’s name and address need to be written as follows:
    • Recipients Full Name
    • Street Address
    • City, State, and zip code
  • Recipient’s name:
    • Unmarried woman: Ms. Holly Golightly
    • Unmarried man: Mr. Doc Golightly
    • Married woman: Mrs. Holly Golightly or Mrs. Doc Golightly
    • Married man: Mr. Doc Golightly
    • Divorced woman: Mrs. Holly Golightly or Ms. Holly Golightly
    • Divorced Man: Mr. Doc Golightly
    • Widowed woman: Mrs. Doc Golightly or Mrs. Holly Golightly
    • Widowed man: Mr. Doc Golightly
    • Married Couple: Mr. And Mrs. Doc Golightly
    • Married Couple, husband is a doctor: Dr. Doc Golightly and Mrs. Holly Golightly
    • Married Couple, wife is a doctor: Dr. Holly Golightly and Mr. Doc Golightly
    • Married Couple, both are doctors: The Doctors Golightly or Drs. Doc and Holly Golightly
  • Don’t forget to write your return address. You can hand write it in the top left corner of the envelope, affix a return address label in this same place, or use a return address stamp on the back of the envelope above the seal.

Hopping Down the Bunny Trail: Easter Entertaining

Chocolate bunnies, Dutch tulips, decorating eggs – they can mean only one thing: Easter! As a child, we celebrated Easter with my grandparents, attending church and relishing in festive traditions at our country club. Swathed in a sea of pastels, we participated in a wildly fun egg hunt on the driving range (my brother always found the coveted “golden egg”), followed by a delicious brunch and an afternoon amusing ourselves with Easter baskets brought by the bunny himself. I’m a bit of a chocoholic, and according to my mom, had usually devoured my Easter treats by the day’s end!

Whether you’re spending this year’s holiday with family or friends, follow my tips for a truly wonderful Easter Sunday. 

Bunnies, baskets, and speckled eggs, oh my! Here are some of my favorite Easter decor items: 

This playful tradition isn’t just for the little ones! Did your bunny ears just perk up? Easter baskets can be customized for both children and adults and here’s how:

Purchase wicker baskets, stuff them with Easter grass, and fill them with goodies including:

  • Kids: The cornerstone of every child’s Easter basket, be sure to include plenty of sugary sweets – chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, chocolate eggs, and lollipops – as well as non-edible treasures such as stuffed animals, crayons, coloring pencils, and books. 
  • Adults: No matter our age, many of us still have a sweet tooth so include a bevy of Easter treats – chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, chocolate eggs, and lollipops – as well as thoughtful items tailored to the recipient. For instance, if you’re making a basket for your husband and he loves Kiehl’s, include some of his favorite products from their line; if you’re making a basket for your sister and she loves to garden, include some precious monogrammed gardening gloves. 

Synonymous with spring – and speaking of, happy first day of spring! – fresh flowers bring beauty and life to any home. Not to mention the incredible fragrance they emit! To help inspire you, here are three arrangement ideas for under $100 that I created:

Arrangement 1: Lovely for a guest room, living room, or even kitchen table. I love the different textures, heights, and pop of pink.
Tulips, Stock, and Brunia Albiflora 
Arrangement 2: Gorgeous for the dining room table or as the centerpiece for the buffet, this arrangement was inspired by Peter Rabbit’s garden. I wrapped a leaf around the inside of the vase to add a polished look.
Freesia, Kale, and Ranunculus 
Arrangement 3: Perfect for a library table or in the den. Again, I wrapped leaves around the inside of the vase to add dimension – I love the contrast of the tight rose blooms with the full hydrangeas. 
Hydrangeas and Roses 

We all remember a truly sensational meal, so “Bring the Buns” and impress your family and friends this Easter with this delicious menu!

Easter Brunch
*Barefoot Contessa Recipes 

Easy Elegant Supper for Family or Friends

Happy Friday! Whether you’re planning on tucking in for a cozy weekend or you’ve suddenly become inspired by my blog and are going to host a dinner party, here is one of my favorite menus for an easy yet and elegant supper. And did I mention it only takes 35 minutes? In terms of a table setting, casual bistro style is the way to go: quilted place mats, printed cotton napkins, and silver napkin rings. Enjoy!