MacMost Now 770: Using Mac Mail Stationery

Mac Mail has a feature that allows you to use colorful email templates. There are many to choose from, and you can buy more from third-party companies. You can also create your own through a variety of methods.

Video Transcript
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today's episode let's take a look at Mail stationery.

So you may or may not have noticed when you go to compose a new message in Mail you can choose from a bunch of stationery. The button is right here; stationery pane, and you have different categories that you can look through. For instance plain stationery, photos, things like that, sentiments. So you can select one of these and you get this rich text formatted html email and you can change the text in it to anything you want. Often times you can change more than one text field.

It's got a background color and they usually have images and you can switch easily between these and in some cases you can even drag a photo to an area to customize the stationery. So you have a lot of different options here and there is a lot of different things that come with Mail.

Now one catch is that the person on the other end has to have something that can receive and display this complex email. If they are just using a very basic email client or they are viewing it on an online web based email they may not be able to see it. Obviously, if they are also using Macs and/or using iPads and iPhones it should display perfectly as Apple has designed it for that. But if they are using something else, something older or something at work it may not look perfect.

Now you can also create your own stationery but maybe not at quite the level that you have seen in the examples. So when you are composing a new message, you can go in here. Make sure that in Mail, by the way, that you have it set to message format Rich Text or this won't work. Then you can compose a message here and use Rich Text.

Turn on the format bar so you can see things like fonts and colors and then you can compose your text and create something like this where I've created some text with some fonts and I've centered it and I've dropped in an image here and I've changed font sizes. Things like that.

So this might be something that I want to reuse over and over aging just filling in some extra text here. What I can do is to is say File/Save As Stationery and then give it a name. Now when I want to create a new message with this I can compose a new message, and then I can click on the stationery button here, go down to Custom and you can see I have "Work Party" and it fills all that stuff in. I can go and customize this particular email here with some text and then send it out.

Another way you can customize it, if you are a kind of designer/hacker is to go into your hard drive level, go into Library/Application Support/Apple/Mail/Stationery. Under there you can find more folders that dig even deeper and you can see all the different pieces of stationery in here. You can go and customize them. You can see it is quite complex with different folders for different languages and different pieces to it. So I'm not really going to go into how to customize this. I'm not going to do it myself. But if you are the type that likes to do it you can start looking into it.

Now another thing you can do is kind of tack mail. You may already know this. You can copy. So I selected and copied the top banner from my website. Mail really does a good job letting you copy stuff in Safari and then paste it into a Mail message. It will take the html.

So I've copied everything from the top toolbar. I'm going to switch to Mail. You can see I've already pasted in things in the top toolbar there. So it is kind of a way for me to get some advanced html into a message. Once I do this, I can save this, for instance as stationery, and I would always have a way to start off an email with everything here including all the links in my nav bar for MacMost.

If you are a web designer you could design pages in whatever tool you use, simply view them in Safari, copy everything in there and then paste it in Mail. It is a very easy way to create html email and then create stationery from a html email.

But that's not it where stationery is concerned. If you go to the Mac App Store you will find that a few companies provide additional pieces of mail stationery that you can download as apps. With the apps what you actually do is install that inside of Mail. So if you want more stationery and want to spend a little money on it you can get that.

In addition to that there is also at least one app here that claims to allow you to design mail stationery. It seems to be a html editor with lots of features. I have not tried it myself and there may actually be more if you look outside the Mac App Store.

So there's a look at the different aspects of Mail stationery. How to use it and how to create your own.

Hope you found this useful. Until next time this is Gary with MacMost Now.

Comments: 11 Responses to “MacMost Now 770: Using Mac Mail Stationery”

    Carol
    10/8/12 @ 8:48 am

    When you copied your logo & shared it to Mail I can’t see what you clicked to get those options to come up. Please explain how did you do that?

      10/8/12 @ 10:34 am

      Just a simple copy and paste. I selected some of the web page. Then copied (Edit, Copy or Command+C) and then switched to Mail and pasted (Edit, Paste or Command+V).

    tom ackley
    10/11/12 @ 12:08 pm

    when i open mail on the iPad, i don’t get a stationery button option….???

      10/11/12 @ 3:02 pm

      This tutorial is about Mail Stationery on the Mac, not the iPad.

    Roger
    10/11/12 @ 1:08 pm

    Hi Gary, thanks for your “Using Mac Mail Stationery”; your demonstration was excellent, both in content and in clarity.

    Chris...
    10/31/12 @ 1:20 pm

    I’m running Mail under Mountain Lion and I can’t find a stationary button … I’ve looked in Mail preferences, looked on the alternate tool bar buttons and found font size and color buttons, but no stationary. I did check on the hard drive to see if there is a library with Mail Stationary in it and I did find it. Since this is a recent podcast, I was surprised to find that my system didn’t match. Where have I gone wrong? Thanks very much.

      10/31/12 @ 1:48 pm

      Are in a Mail composition window? It doesn’t appear in the main window, of course, since it only functions if you are composing a message. So start a new message and then look in the toolbar to the right.

        Chris...
        10/31/12 @ 1:58 pm

        Shall we all sing a chorus of “Duh!” now? Thanks very much.

        Sheepishly, Chris

    Ann
    12/31/12 @ 12:18 am

    I have often used mac mail on my old computer, I now have a brand new macbook pro and in the photo stationary it will not let me import photos. It also is missing half of the graphics on most of the pages. Help!

    emma
    3/6/13 @ 12:24 am

    i am trying to use stationary and if i try to type into a template first, then the pics wont work.
    alterantively, if i drag pics into a template, then the text wont let me edit it!?

    what is going on please?

      3/6/13 @ 6:13 am

      Not sure. Play around with it. If you still can’t figure it out, get it in front on an expert (Genius Bar, etc).

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