How to Address Clasp Envelopes

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How to Address Clasp Envelopes

Two Parts:

Clasp envelopes get their name from the metal clasp that can be used to keep the envelope shut. These are usually larger than regular letter envelopes, so they can hold standard sized documents with no folding required. The address rules are the same as a regular envelope, but you may need to work around the position of the clasp to avoid wiggles in your handwriting.


Addressing the Envelope

  1. Consider an adhesive label.If the clasp on your envelope makes it difficult to write legibly, think about purchasing a sticky address label from a post office or stationary store. You can write on the label on a flat surface, then peel it off and fix it onto the envelope. If you decide to write directly on the envelope, just continue to the next step.
    • The return address label should be smaller than the main address label.
  2. Lay the envelope flat.Before placing anything in the envelope, lay it flat with the clasp facing down. Run your hand across the envelope so you can feel where the clasp is.
  3. Arrange the envelope in a landscape orientation.Turn the envelope so the flap is on the right side.
  4. Write the sender's address in the top-left corner.Write your address in fairly small print, so you have plenty of space in the center of the envelope. Use the same address format as you would on a normal letter. This is the standard in the US, and similar format are used for most other countries:
    • Name of Sender
      Street Address
      Apartment/Suite Number(if needed)
      State and Postal Code (a.k.a. ZIP code)
      Country(for international mail)
  5. Write the recipient's address in the center.Write the address where you'd like to send the envelope, in the same format. Write this on the same side of the envelope, in large print.
    • If the clasp is located under the center, feel for it first to plan where to write. To avoid bumps, you might need to write this slightly off-center, or write so the clasp is in between two line of the address.
  6. Add optional instructions.If you have extra instructions such as "Do not bend," write them once at the base of the front, and again on the back of the envelope.
    • If you're not sure whether you need to write "Air Mail" or a similar instruction, ask someone at the post office or look up instructions on the post office website.

Sealing the Envelope

  1. Place you mail inside the envelope.Flip the envelope open and slide your mail into the opening. Place the top edge of the document nearest the opening if possible.
  2. Lift the clasp arms.The most common type of clasp envelope has a butterfly clip with two metal arms. Unfold these so they stand straight up. You may need to pry them up using your fingernails.
    • If your envelope has two circles and a string instead, just close the flap and wrap the string tight around the other circle instead.
  3. Wet or peel the flap if necessary.If your envelope has a strip of paper along the edge of the flap, peel this off to reveal the adhesive. If your flap has a lick-able strip, wet this slightly to make it sticky.
  4. Push the metal clasps through the hole in the flap.Lower the flap and adjust the metal arms so that they are positioned right beneath the hole. Push the hole over both arms. Seal the flap against the body of the envelope by running over the edge with your thumb.
  5. Flatten and secure the arms.Push the clasp arms outward again and flatten them against the flap. To prevent the clasp from catching on other mail, put a piece of tape over the arms.
  6. Affix postage.Apply the appropriate postage in the upper right hand corner of the envelope, and your envelope is ready to mail. The exact postage required depends on the size and weight of the envelope, as instructed by your local post office. If you can't find instructions, just take the envelope to the post office and pay for postage over-the-counter.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    How do I address this? Russell Clark 527 6th. Ave. S.E. Cedar Rapids Iowa 52401
    Top Answerer
    The name goes on the first line, the street address (including S.E.) goes on the second line, and the rest (including the zip code) goes on the third line.
  • Question
    How do I determine postage? Not sure how many stamps to put on.
    Top Answerer
    It depends entirely on the weight of the envelope and its contents. Have a postal clerk weigh it to be sure.
  • Question
    Where do I put an attention line on an envelope?
    Top Answerer
    Put it near the lower-left corner of the envelope.
  • Question
    How long does it normally take for a small manila envelope to reach its destination sent First Class mail?
    Top Answerer
    Delivery time will be the same as for a regular, business-size envelope. It depends on how far it has to travel. Locally: one business day. Cross-country: two-to-three business days.
Ask a Question
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  • Try to write in straight horizontal lines on the envelope. You may want to use a ruler and even draw guidelines lightly with a pencil to help you write straight.
  • If you have messy handwriting, write the addresses in capital print letters. You could also try printing out the address on a sticky label, or asking a friend with clearer handwriting to write the addresses for you.

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Sources and Citations

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Views: 187,416

Nancy Drew

May 15

"This article about placement of address was a great help! I love the fact that this website is secure and hasproper steps with visuals that help the reader understand and solve their problem. Thanks to those who spend their time to write these articles!"

S. Zilos

Jan 8

"I wasn't sure if I should address it horizontally or vertically. Now I know. I also wondered if it would bebetter to tape over the clasp or not and that was answered as well. Thanks!"

Emma R.

Oct 7, 2019

"Very helpful. I did not know if I had to write the address vertically or horizontally. Now I do - thanks!"

Emily Brown

Aug 25, 2019

"I needed to find out which way to turn my envelope while addressing it. This helped me figure that out. "
Rated this article:

Colin Rutkowski

Jan 1

"This article gave me the confidence to fill out this bigger, fancier envelope like a regular one."

Stephanie Williams

Apr 28, 2019

"Never had to mail something in a clasp envelope before, so this article came in handy."
Rated this article:

Ashlee Crawford

Jun 13, 2019

"It really helped me, thanks for showing me how to do it. Now I know.

Video: How to address an envelope

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