Printing Envelopes With Your Mac

There are many ways to print envelopes with your Mac. In this video, we'll look at using Pages to print a single envelope. Then we'll compare that to using Contacts to print. You can also get third-party apps in the Mac App Store that give you even more options.

Video Transcript
Let's say you want something a little bit better than a handwritten address for an envelope for something special. So you want to print something out. You can do this one of a few ways on your Mac. I'm going to show you two.

One, that you may go to right away, is Pages. Use Pages to print an envelope. You can do this using one of the Pages templates that's in there. So when you create a new document it asks you to choose a template. If you scroll down you'll find a bunch of envelopes. So I'm going to choose Classic envelope here and I get some prefilled in bits of information here. Return address, main address. I can go in and Edit these and make them what I want. I can, of course, change things like fonts and maybe make them larger, bolder, whatever I want to do.

I can also change the type of envelope I'm using. So I want to measure the envelope and I want to go and see if any of the envelopes under Page Setup will fit. The default here is envelope #10. There's a few others. Technically you can use Manage Custom Sizes but I haven't had too much success with that. You're going to have to do trial and error. If you make it custom size you're probably going to have to print out several different versions. Adjust things. Move things around just to get it right. In this case envelope 10 fits the bill.

I can go to File, Print and then make some selections here. One of the things you want to select is under Media & Quality. There's a media type for my printer and I can choose envelope to tell it that something thicken is going to go through than a standard sheet of paper. Also you want to worry about which way is up and which side to print on. So one of the things that you want to do is use a standard piece of paper and fold it if you don't want to waste an envelope and kind of mark on it to make it a fake envelope, feed it through and see exactly which side it's on. Or if you have a bunch of envelopes you may want to waste one just to see what happens. Then when you know how to orient the paper as you feed it through the printer you click Print and you should get a printed envelope.

So I got exactly the results I wanted but your results may vary. Printers vary on how they handle envelopes and, of course, the envelope size is going to mean you might run into some trouble. So you may have to go into this template here and move things around to adjust. You may need to do things like since this is the body text here you may need to add some spacing. I'm just putting some tab there. Things like that. So you do what you have to do to get the envelope printed and looking the way you want.

Now another way to do it is to use the Contacts app. Of course this allows you to print envelopes pretty easily. If the contact is already there then you don't even have to type the address. But if not don't be afraid to add a contact temporarily in order to do this. It's no different really than creating a new Pages document.

So I'm going to do File, New Card, and I'm going to just create a temporary card and set an address down here. Hit Done and with that contact selected I'm going to go to File, Print. The first thing you want to look at here is Style. Make sure you have Style, Envelopes chosen. Now you get a ton of options here and this is really interesting. You can choose a Layout and there's a bunch of different presets. So you have North American Envelopes and you'll see a lot more here than you did in Pages. There's International Envelopes and there's Japanese Envelopes. So a ton of different envelope choices.

I can choose the official 10 here and I can see that the width and the height is pretty much the number 10 that was in Pages. But I have a lot of other options as well. I can choose between inches, millimeters and points for my Units there and I can easily build my custom envelope. So I can define a custom envelope. I'll call it Test. Now I can edit all this stuff. So I can edit the width and the height. I can edit the position and the width and height of the recipient. The position and the width and height of the sender to customize everything. When I get it just like I want I can Print. Of course this is saved as a custom type. So if it works for me and I have a lot of envelopes of this size I can reuse it.

Then when I'm done with it don't be afraid to delete that contact if you really only wanted it there to print this envelope. It's really no different than creating a Pages document to use it once to print an envelope and then deleting it.

Now if you have a need to do more than just a single envelope here and there you may want to look into a specialty app. There are plenty in the Mac app store. You can use one of these to print larger runs or maybe it's something you need to do on a regular basis or do it for work. There's several different apps here so you want to look through them and find one that fits your needs.

Comments: 19 Responses to “Printing Envelopes With Your Mac”

    12/26/17 @ 12:32 pm

    A slightly off-topic question… is there a way (or app) to print address LABELS on a sheet label stationery that has missing (i.e a;read used in an earlier print job) labels? For example, on a sheet of, say, 3 x 7 labels and the first 5 labels from column 1 are missing, how do start at column 1 label 6?

    12/26/17 @ 12:34 pm

    oops .. a couple of typos there! The bit in brackets should read … “(i.e. used in an earlier print job)”

    12/26/17 @ 12:37 pm

    Try starting with one of the Pages templates and only filling in the labels you want printed. You may need to modify the template to fit your labels, or make your own template, but it certainly is doable if you are willing to put the time and effort into it.

    Douglas Brace
    12/26/17 @ 12:54 pm

    Eric, I do not know how to do it in iWork for Mac but this is possible in Microsoft Word 2016 for Mac. In the “Mailings” tab, click the “Labels” button. Leave the “Delivery Address” field empty, select your type of label, make sure that “Full page of the same label” is selected, and click on the “OK” button. A new “labels” document will be created. This document is a table and the borders will be hidden but if you turn on show/hide characters you will see each cell in the table. cont…

    Douglas Brace
    12/26/17 @ 12:55 pm

    cont from previous comment… Each cell in the table represents a label on the piece of paper. All you have to do is go to the label that you want (such as column 1, row 6 from your example) and start to type what you want in that location. You can then print when you are ready.

    Douglas Brace
    12/26/17 @ 12:57 pm

    cont from previous comment.. When in the “Labels” dialog box, you can also type your address/text in the textbox, select “Single label”, and then the row and column that you desire. I previously prefer the steps that I outlined.

    Douglas Brace
    12/26/17 @ 12:58 pm

    ***** I *personally* prefer the steps that I *previously* outlined. *****

    12/27/17 @ 8:03 am

    Many thanks for those suggestions. I had hoped that there might have been something on the App Store. However, the solution (for me) is here …

    Helen Russell
    12/28/17 @ 11:25 am

    Using your tutorial with Contacts, I did not find a way to have a return address included.

    12/28/17 @ 11:33 am

    Helen: It should do so automatically. Perhaps you have never set your card to be officially “My Card.” Select your contact card, and then choose Card, Make This My Card. Then it should use your address as the return address.

    12/28/17 @ 12:36 pm

    Even though I have my Contacts Preferences to “Show First Name” Before last name, when I try to print envelopes or labels they show the last name before the first name. How can I fix that?

    12/28/17 @ 1:47 pm

    Shirley: Are you sure that those contacts have the first name in the first name field and the last name in the last name field? I can’t think of what else would cause that.

    Helen Russell
    12/28/17 @ 2:00 pm

    Thanks very much, Gary. I had mine set as My Card, but it did not work. So I switched it to my husband’s card – which did work – and then set it again as mine. Now it works. Love all the tutorials.

    Scott Smith
    12/28/17 @ 5:51 pm

    Chronos PrintLife will allow you to do what you are asking for, you tell the app which label to start printing on and how many labels you want.

    Fred Balfour
    12/29/17 @ 2:17 am

    I’m with Shirley (above) in the first name before last issue. I have contacts created correctly (first name in correct field). Using preferences, I set “first before last”. I even tried shutting down contacts and restarting to see if it would print correctly. I’m still getting “last before first” on the printed envelope

    12/29/17 @ 7:53 am

    Some thoughts on this. First, there are TWO places where you can set the order of first and last names. The first is in Contacts, Preferences, General. This seems to change it in the sidebar list, but not each contact. Though it may set the default for new contacts.

    The second is in the menu bar under Card, Show First Name Before Last./Show Last Name Before First. This is a setting for only the card you are viewing. So check each card and see how each is set. I read one report of someone having this set wrong for each card and had to spend 5 minutes arrowing through each card and changing each one.

    12/29/17 @ 10:38 am

    Yes, I have the correct name in the correct name field. If I use your suggestion of the Card Menu it will change a single card and it will remain for the print menu. However, it negates the Contacts Preferences “Show First Name Following Last Name.” There is a bug somewhere.

    Robert Williams
    12/31/17 @ 8:58 am

    I would like to send out self-addressed envelopes, where the return address is different on each envelope and is generated from a list. Any suggestions?

    12/31/17 @ 9:39 am

    Robert: I’d look for an app in the App Store or some custom service online if the amount of envelopes you are talking about is large.

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