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How-To: Printing Mailing Labels From Address Book

This holiday season, the Unites States Postal Service recommends getting First Class Mail out by Monday, Dec. 20 to ensure delivery by the 25th. The following two tips will help you get address labels printed up and ready to mail using your Mac (s aapl). Both methods use Avery 8160 Address labels in this tutorial, but a wide variety of Avery printable labels can be used.

Apple Address Book and MobileMe Contacts

Apple’s Address Book application on Mac OS X Snow Leopard has the ability to print directly to address labels.  First create a new group called “Holiday Cards 2010” in Apple’s Address Book.  Add the contacts you wish to send a card to this season to this new group.  Once this task is complete, simply select the group and perform the following steps:

  1. Select File>Print from the Address Book Menu
  2. Click the icon next to your Printer choice that looks like an upside-down triangle
  3. From the Style drop down menu, choose Mailing Labels
  4. Under the Layout tab, set the Page to Avery Standard and 8160 (or whatever type of mailing label you have)

Now you’re all set to print.  I would also recommend saving the results as a PDF file, and printing from there.  That way you’ll always have a record of whom you already mailed cards to this holiday season. If you want to change the font or add an image to the address labels, from that same print dialog box where you choose which type of label you’re using, simply toggle over from Layout to the Label tab and make any changes you want.

Avery Designer Pro and Google Contacts

Just as with the Apple Address Book solution above, the first thing to do when you’re dealing with your Google (s goog)-stored addresses is to create a new group called “Holiday Cards 2010” in Google’s Contacts.  Add your chosen contacts to the group. Now we’ll export the group to a local file on your Mac, and use Avery’s Designer Pro for Mac application to actually print the labels. Once you’ve installed Avery’s software, perform the following steps:

  1. Export the contact group in Google Contacts as a “Google CSV” file (google.csv)
  2. Launch Avery Designer Pro and choose 8160 – Easy Peel Mailing Labels (or whatever type of mailing label you have) from the list of all Avery Products
  3. Click on the Use Blank button in the bottom right hand corner of Avery Designer Pro
  4. From the toolbar located on the top left, click on the Text Box button to add a text box to the label
  5. Now click on the Mail Merge button located just below the toolbar, this will prompt you to load the exported CSV file (google.csv)
  6. Select the exported CSV file from the file system, and insert the columns you want to show up on the label

Now you can print from Avery Designer Pro’s File menu.  I would again recommend saving the results as a PDF file, and printing from there.

This technique is a little more flexible considering you have the option to choose one of Avery’s design styles. It’s also a little more powerful since you are actually designing the address labels in a designer that even supports layers, and of course a little more complex, as you need to export data and install and use a third-party application.

You can also mix and match the above two solutions, as you could certainly export your Google Contacts as a vCard and import them into Apple’s Address Book. The Avery Designer Pro application can also import Apple Address Book Contacts.  Either way, hopefully you find printing mailing labels on a Mac one of the easier one of the easier things to cross of your list this holiday.

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5 Responses to “How-To: Printing Mailing Labels From Address Book”

  1. ShopperSimon

    Thank you for this article – great timing as I mailed out Happy New Year cards.

    Question: How can I position and print select labels from a sheet? Example: I use the Avery 8160 labels (which are 3 labels across and 10 down). If I print 93 labels, I’m on sheet #4. If at a later time I need 7 more labels, how can I position them to skip the first three used spots on the sheet?

    Thank you for any help!