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Photo: Driely S. for Racked
Photo: Driely S. for Racked

Take Note: 20 of the Best Stationery Shops in New York City

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Photo: Driely S. for Racked

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Here's a bit of #tbt trivia for you: When was the last time you sent a handwritten note in the mail? (And no, writing out the check to your building management company doesn't count). It's certainly easier these days to fire off a quick text or email to thank your friend for sending you a housewarming present or dog-sitting for the weekend, but an emoji-less letter on cute stationery—whether stock or personalized—has an old-school touch of class that will not go out of style anytime soon.

Below, we've mapped out 20 of the city's best shops for anything and everything stationery, from boxed sets of thank-you notes and kitschy birthday cards to personalized letterhead and party invitations. Check out the shops below, ranging from well-known chains to neighborhood mom-and-pops, and get inspired to back away from the keyboard.

Additional research by Roderic David

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1. Blacker and Kooby by Vanessa

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(212) 369-8308
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Come to this Upper East Side spot, which relocated to Lexington Avenue after 50 years on Madison Avenue, when you know exactly what you want. Customization is the name of the game here, starting with simple thank-you notes and working up to frame-worthy bar/bat mitzvah and wedding invitations. [Photo]

2. Stationery & Toy World

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(212) 580-3922
"Stores like this simply do not exist anymore, except perhaps in small towns or beloved memories," one (of several) five-star Yelp review begins. Aside with providing the Upper West Side with a great selection of children's toys (Village Voice even named it the best toy store last year), the family-owned business also has a solid selection of paper goods, pens, and more. [Photo

3. EAF Fine Papers

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(212) 874-2649
Visit Website
Take the time to select the right paper and lettering for your personalized stationery at this Upper West Side studio, stocking up on engraved correspondence cards and letterhead. The store also offers monogramming on a variety of gift options, from candle votives to miniature soaps. [Photo]

4. Il Papiro

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(212) 288-9330
Visit Website
Featuring paper made in the Tuscan tradition, customers will find note cards, address books, leather-bound journals, and a variety of pens ready for purchase in the Florentine-inspired shop on the Upper East Side. Their extensive collection of marbleized paper products is unrivaled, too. [Photo]

5. Smythson

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4 W 57th St
New York, NY 10022
(212) 265-4573
Visit Website
Amid elegant women's purses and men's leather accessories are luxurious yet simple stationery options: correspondence cards in blue and white, fill-in-the-blank invitations, and leather-bound pocket notebooks. You can also use their website to handily preview what your customized business card or letterhead will look like before you order. [Photo]

6. MUJI Times Square

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(212) 382-2300
Visit Website
Those who like minimalist design will appreciate the Japanese store's stationery section, featuring no-nonsense paper and envelopes made of either cotton or recycled materials. [Photo]

7. Cursive New York

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(212) 867-5550
Visit Website
Pop into this Grand Central store for a birthday card or love note before hopping a on a train. You can also find Cursive, run by locals Douglas Duncan and Michael Schultz, tucked inside ABC Carpet + Home in Flatiron.[Photo]

8. Papyrus

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107 E 42nd St
New York, NY 10017
(212) 490-9894
Visit Website
We would be remiss to exclude the beacon of bedazzled birthday cards from this list. The beauty of these cards, neatly arranged by hue, is that they're a great substitute for when you forget to buy an actual present. They also offer boxed note cards, thank you notes, invitations, and more. [Photo]

9. Village Invites

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(212) 220-6199
Visit Website
In this by-appointment-only studio, find elegant and engraved personalized stationery options with modern motifs that bring letter-writing to the present day. Their downtown location at 20 East 13th Street is open for browsing (read: you don't need to call ahead) on most weekdays, if you're not quite ready to commit. [Photo]

10. Paper Presentation

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23 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011
(973) 992-1300
Visit Website
There likely isn't a stationery store in all of Manhattan with this much frontage. The massive store contains everything you could ever need made out of paper, from boxed cards to wrapping paper to every variety of envelope you could need. Talk to a sales associate about customized printing options for personal letterhead or wedding invitations. [Photo]

11. Greenwich Letterpress

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(212) 989-7464
Visit Website
If the bright and cheery atmosphere of this shop doesn't immediately perk you up, we don't know what will. The sister-owners here specialize in—of course—letterpress, so all of the personalized stationery here has an artisinal touch. The retail shop has ready-to-go thank you cards that you can buy individually or in sets. [Photo]

12. JAM Paper & Envelope

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(212) 473-6666
Visit Website
Here's your simple solution for finding your basic paper needs in every color and every size, as they boast. The thank-you cards and note cards here might not be sassy, but the simple designs of these are reflected in their affordable prices. [Photo]

13. Essex Card Shop

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(212) 228-7740
Visit Website
This neighborhood spot might not be the fanciest place on our map, but the small business on Avenue A is perfect for quickly picking up a birthday card or boxed notecards—but leave yourself a few minutes to check out the vintage-looking postcards featuring non-cheesy shots of New York out front. [Photo]

14. Paper Source

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(646) 484-5764
Visit Website
Paper Source got its start more than three decades ago in Chicago and now has dozens of stores across the country, including six spread out among Manhattan and Brooklyn (the first one opened in Cobble Hill in 2010). In the Soho store, find stationery sets for both everyday and holiday, all of which can be customized to your liking. [Photo]

15. Kate's Paperie

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(212) 941-9816
Visit Website
The urge to ditch your computer and opt for solely handwritten communication is strong upon walking into Kate's Paperie, which offers ready-to-go boxed sets of cards and notes alongside decorative papers, greeting cards, notebooks, and New York City-themed items. [Photo]

16. Bowne & Co. Stationers

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(646) 315-4478
Visit Website
Tucked in the historic South Street Seaport area is this small-batch printing firm that was originally founded in 1775. It's rolled into the museum here and doesn't have customization options, but you can pick up hand-printed cards made by master printer Robert Warner that you won't find anywhere else. [Photo]

17. Dabney Lee

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(718) 596-4169
Visit Website
The picturesque Dumbo shop is all about personalization here, with brightly patterned boxed sets (hot pink chevron, anyone?) complimenting their invitation and announcement services. [Photo]

18. Papél New York

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225 Court Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 422-0255
Visit Website
The Court Street shop opened in late 2009 carrying cutesy small-brand stationers (that, according to their site, are "more than just a giggle") and soon expanded to customized invitations for weddings. [Photo]

19. Foxy & Winston

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(718) 928-4855
Visit Website
The Red Hook shop that opened in 2009 carries beautiful letterpress-printed and flat cards ready to carry out of the store, or store owner Jane Buck will walk you through the process of having her create a personalized illustration or logo placed on letterhead, calling cards, or envelopes. [Photo]

20. Lion In The Sun

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232 7th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 369-4006
Visit Website
Park Slope has relied on this shop since 200 for fine paper products that don't have a harmful effect on the environment—several of the brands carried here are made with recycled products. They're great for both boxed sets of save the dates and note cards and customized options for thank you notes and invitations. [Photo]

1. Blacker and Kooby by Vanessa

1390 Lexington Ave New York, NY 10128
Come to this Upper East Side spot, which relocated to Lexington Avenue after 50 years on Madison Avenue, when you know exactly what you want. Customization is the name of the game here, starting with simple thank-you notes and working up to frame-worthy bar/bat mitzvah and wedding invitations. [Photo]

2. Stationery & Toy World

125 W 72nd St New York, NY 10023
"Stores like this simply do not exist anymore, except perhaps in small towns or beloved memories," one (of several) five-star Yelp review begins. Aside with providing the Upper West Side with a great selection of children's toys (Village Voice even named it the best toy store last year), the family-owned business also has a solid selection of paper goods, pens, and more. [Photo

3. EAF Fine Papers

2025 Broadway New York, NY 10023
Take the time to select the right paper and lettering for your personalized stationery at this Upper West Side studio, stocking up on engraved correspondence cards and letterhead. The store also offers monogramming on a variety of gift options, from candle votives to miniature soaps. [Photo]

4. Il Papiro

1021 Lexington Ave New York, NY 10021
Featuring paper made in the Tuscan tradition, customers will find note cards, address books, leather-bound journals, and a variety of pens ready for purchase in the Florentine-inspired shop on the Upper East Side. Their extensive collection of marbleized paper products is unrivaled, too. [Photo]

5. Smythson

4 W 57th St, New York, NY 10022
Amid elegant women's purses and men's leather accessories are luxurious yet simple stationery options: correspondence cards in blue and white, fill-in-the-blank invitations, and leather-bound pocket notebooks. You can also use their website to handily preview what your customized business card or letterhead will look like before you order. [Photo]
4 W 57th St
New York, NY 10022

6. MUJI Times Square

620 Eighth Ave New York, NY 10018
Those who like minimalist design will appreciate the Japanese store's stationery section, featuring no-nonsense paper and envelopes made of either cotton or recycled materials. [Photo]

7. Cursive New York

87 E 42nd St New York, NY 10017
Pop into this Grand Central store for a birthday card or love note before hopping a on a train. You can also find Cursive, run by locals Douglas Duncan and Michael Schultz, tucked inside ABC Carpet + Home in Flatiron.[Photo]

8. Papyrus

107 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017
We would be remiss to exclude the beacon of bedazzled birthday cards from this list. The beauty of these cards, neatly arranged by hue, is that they're a great substitute for when you forget to buy an actual present. They also offer boxed note cards, thank you notes, invitations, and more. [Photo]
107 E 42nd St
New York, NY 10017

9. Village Invites

10 E 39th St New York, NY 10016
In this by-appointment-only studio, find elegant and engraved personalized stationery options with modern motifs that bring letter-writing to the present day. Their downtown location at 20 East 13th Street is open for browsing (read: you don't need to call ahead) on most weekdays, if you're not quite ready to commit. [Photo]

10. Paper Presentation

23 W 18th St, New York, NY 10011
There likely isn't a stationery store in all of Manhattan with this much frontage. The massive store contains everything you could ever need made out of paper, from boxed cards to wrapping paper to every variety of envelope you could need. Talk to a sales associate about customized printing options for personal letterhead or wedding invitations. [Photo]
23 W 18th St
New York, NY 10011

11. Greenwich Letterpress

39 Christopher St New York, NY 10014
If the bright and cheery atmosphere of this shop doesn't immediately perk you up, we don't know what will. The sister-owners here specialize in—of course—letterpress, so all of the personalized stationery here has an artisinal touch. The retail shop has ready-to-go thank you cards that you can buy individually or in sets. [Photo]

12. JAM Paper & Envelope

135 Third Ave New York, NY 10003
Here's your simple solution for finding your basic paper needs in every color and every size, as they boast. The thank-you cards and note cards here might not be sassy, but the simple designs of these are reflected in their affordable prices. [Photo]

13. Essex Card Shop

39 Avenue A New York, NY 10009
This neighborhood spot might not be the fanciest place on our map, but the small business on Avenue A is perfect for quickly picking up a birthday card or boxed notecards—but leave yourself a few minutes to check out the vintage-looking postcards featuring non-cheesy shots of New York out front. [Photo]

14. Paper Source

83 Spring St New York, NY 10012
Paper Source got its start more than three decades ago in Chicago and now has dozens of stores across the country, including six spread out among Manhattan and Brooklyn (the first one opened in Cobble Hill in 2010). In the Soho store, find stationery sets for both everyday and holiday, all of which can be customized to your liking. [Photo]

15. Kate's Paperie

188 Lafayette St New York, NY 10013
The urge to ditch your computer and opt for solely handwritten communication is strong upon walking into Kate's Paperie, which offers ready-to-go boxed sets of cards and notes alongside decorative papers, greeting cards, notebooks, and New York City-themed items. [Photo]

16. Bowne & Co. Stationers

211 Water St New York, NY 10038
Tucked in the historic South Street Seaport area is this small-batch printing firm that was originally founded in 1775. It's rolled into the museum here and doesn't have customization options, but you can pick up hand-printed cards made by master printer Robert Warner that you won't find anywhere else. [Photo]

17. Dabney Lee

45 Washington St Brooklyn, NY 11201
The picturesque Dumbo shop is all about personalization here, with brightly patterned boxed sets (hot pink chevron, anyone?) complimenting their invitation and announcement services. [Photo]

18. Papél New York

225 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
The Court Street shop opened in late 2009 carrying cutesy small-brand stationers (that, according to their site, are "more than just a giggle") and soon expanded to customized invitations for weddings. [Photo]
225 Court Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

19. Foxy & Winston

392 Van Brunt St Brooklyn, NY 11231
The Red Hook shop that opened in 2009 carries beautiful letterpress-printed and flat cards ready to carry out of the store, or store owner Jane Buck will walk you through the process of having her create a personalized illustration or logo placed on letterhead, calling cards, or envelopes. [Photo]

20. Lion In The Sun

232 7th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Park Slope has relied on this shop since 200 for fine paper products that don't have a harmful effect on the environment—several of the brands carried here are made with recycled products. They're great for both boxed sets of save the dates and note cards and customized options for thank you notes and invitations. [Photo]
232 7th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215