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Postcard Birthday Poster DIY

This project is part of a campaign I’m doing with Yahoo! Mail on different ways to keep in touch with family and friends. I had wanted to recreate an easier version of this big project I did for Aubrey last year and this seemed like the perfect time. I contacted the artist, Shanna Murray, to help me come up with artwork for a poster that everyone could download. It says “I’m so glad you were born” which is my favorite way to wish someone happy birthday. If you have a special person whose birthday is coming up here is how it works. You download the pdf below made up of 25 different pages that each have a part of the poster or “piece of the puzzle” on it. Then you email each page to a different person like their family and friends and assorted lovers. Then each person prints it out on cardstock, cuts it out, writes a note on the postcard, and stamps and mails it to the birthday person. The birthday person will get love notes and birthday wishes for a week or two from everyone they know as the postcards trickle in with the daily mail! Find detailed instructions and the download below!.

Step 1: Decide who you are going to give this surprise to and get their mailing address. You’ll also need to make a list of 25 friends and family with their email addresses.

Step 2: Download the 25 sheet pdf. Each pdf has some basic instructions explaining the project but you’ll need to include more detailed instructions with your email. Here is a sample of instructions you could include:


I’ve put together this little poster project for (__________’s) birthday. It’s pretty simple and just requires you to print out the attachment of this email on cardstock, write on it, stamp it and drop it in the mail. Then (_________) will receive all 25 pieces of the poster in the mail like a puzzle. (__________’s) birthday is (_____) so please mail it between the dates of (_____and____). If for some reason you can’t send your card in will you please let me know so I figure out a plan B.

1. Print out the paper on a heavy paper like cardstock.
2. Cut out the card.
3. Address the other side of the card to (_____________) fill in address.
4. Write a note to (__________) feel free to get creative, draw pictures, or even mail it in an envelope and attach old pictures.
5. Stamp it and drop it in the mail between (______________and__________)

If you have any questions email me at (______________).

Step 3: Send an email to each person with a different attachment and instructions.

Step 4: If you want you can send a follow up reminder about the mailing dates. When we did it we tried to get everyone to send it in but I sort of liked that a few came up missing, it wasn’t “perfect.”

Download the 25 pages with postcards below!

A special thanks to Shanna Murray for the beautiful design, to Aubrey Trinnaman for the photos and for Alexis Birkmeyer for pulling it all together. What do you think? Would you ever do this? Do you think you could get 25 people to mail in a postcard?

All photos by Aubrey Trinnaman for Oh Happy Day

  1. Eva

    June 1, 2011

    I love it!
    But I do think it can be a problem finding 25 persons who would send the card. Maby 10 would be easier?

  2. The New Diplomats Wife

    June 1, 2011

    Love it! Very cool idea and I’m always on the lookout for anything that brings back “real” mail. Eva, I’m sure you could adapt this for 10. My brother is in the navy and when he was stuck in boot camp over Christmas and New Years and his 21st birthday, we would have people write postcards at our holiday parties – the easiest to get a lot of people involved since I would catch them at the door. We provided the pre-addressed cards and stamps, and filling one out was your ticket into the party, and then i would mail them a few at a time. we’ve done this at going away parties too with great success.

  3. Kat

    June 1, 2011

    A Fabulous and FUN idea! I think I could find 25 people for a big milestone birthday…getting them all to send it is another story. This would also be a great idea to adapt for a wedding guest-book {have all the guests ‘sign’ a postcard with a note that makes up a piece of artwork to remind you of the big day!} or even a baby shower.

    PS – Congrats on the new site! It’s lovely!

  4. Laura Gaskill

    June 1, 2011

    Oh my goodness. This is so amazing, I am nearly speechless! But I think I can pull myself together enough to say THANK YOU!

    I am seriously considering adapting this project to use for my little one’s first birthday at the end of June…I am only wondering & wishing there were a way to preserve the finished poster that would show both the design + personal messages on the back. I think it would be such an amazing keepsake to have all of the relatives & friends contribute…if you can think of a snazzy display idea, I would love it if you could let me know! xo Laura

  5. Erica

    June 3, 2011

    What an incredible idea! This would absolutely make a birthday boy or girl’s day – or year!


    Erica @ tinseltwine

  6. corinne

    June 4, 2011

    what a great idea !! i must think to whom i/we could do this surprise !!
    Thank you 🙂

  7. LittleMars

    June 5, 2011

    Lovely idea Jordan!! the message and the concept, congrats!!

  8. Annika

    June 6, 2011

    I would seriously cry happy tears if somebody did this for me! What a great project!

  9. Vermiljoen

    June 6, 2011

    oh this is so lovely! We ‘ve got two birthdays coming up in the house.

  10. Paula

    June 8, 2011

    hermosa idea!!!

  11. cathy

    June 10, 2011

    you could preserve it by laminating them all together in correct positions. it may be easier to display this way too. recipient would be able to read front and back still.

  12. Anna (sixtyfourcolorbox)

    June 12, 2011

    I’m going to borrow this idea for Father’s Day. I’ll change the message and send one a day until I’ve sent them all. Then he has to wait to see what the message says!

  13. Whitney Fredrickson

    June 14, 2011

    I love this. I am doing for my sister-in-law right now. I just hope everyone cooperates!

  14. Kristen Rask

    June 14, 2011

    I love this idea!

  15. melle

    June 16, 2011

    This is awesome! The only downside is if one person flakes out, it will be quite noticeable and disasterous.

Comments are Closed

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