Friday, September 6, 2013

I'm just a girl who loves paper!

A few weeks ago I was ordering some paper and print samples from a few online printers and it got me thinking:  I really do love paper.  But my love is discerning. I am not talking about newsprint or standard home printer white (though they do have their uses).  I mean beautiful papers with fine textures or an ultra smooth feel and a nice weight.  And then there are the colorful papers: solids, patterns, maybe something with a nifty colored fleck.  And let's not forget beautiful stationary with artful embellishments!  I am a creator of greeting and note cards and still I am tempted to buy other pre-made goodies... simply because they are SO PRETTY!  My love goes beyond the paper itself too.  Think of the countless possibilities for creativity and creation that a clean piece of paper can offer!

My love began really when I was a young girl.  I was definitely an artistic young lady, who loved to gather up all sorts of arts and crafts supplies.  Naturally I would be drawn to paper.  I get a lot of my artistic "genes" from my dad, a very creative fellow.  As a child, Dad would often take us to this awesome paper warehouse in a place "far, far, away".  Ok, maybe I am being a little dreamy here, but the store was about an hours drive away from home in the middle of pretty much nowhere.  I am not sure how he even found out about it.  It was WONDERFUL.  A huge, no frills, mini warehouse of all sorts of paper and envelopes in every style and color you could imagine.  The store has no real design to it, just a mishmash of big and small rooms that make it perfect for exploring and discovering.  We would get paper and envelopes to make homemade stationary and cards.  Dad had built a silk screen and we would print original Christmas card designs.  My sister and I would use our rubber stamps and create our own stationary for letters and such!  (You know, back in the day when people wrote letters with real pen and ink).  A favorite purchase would be the big bag of random paper pads!  It was exactly as you could imagine, just a big plastic bag filled with pads of paper, of all sizes, colors, and textures.  And it was dirt cheap!  Another favorite of mine were the mini pads of paper: 3 x 5, 1.5 x 6... or even smaller, like the size of a business card, they were perfect for homemade tickets or clue cards for homemade board games (yeah, we pretty much created everything as kids).  I still make treks to that store today.  It is just as far away, but not in the middle of nowhere any longer.  New businesses have been built up all along way, yet my beloved paper warehouse hasn't changed much.  Family owned, and looking pretty much the same, I still rely on it for my stationary and paper needs. 

I have amassed quite a stash: A whole closet full of boxes upon boxes of envelopes, various types of card stock and paper in a huge variety of sizes, and a TON of patterned scrapbook papers.  (Yes I, of course, whole heartily embraced that paper-pushing hobby).  My paper makes me happy.  I like to organize it.  I loved my neatly stacked card stock piles in my special cabinet, sitting there just waiting for me to slice and print and fold into cards.  Paper is so simple, so clean, and yet can be altered into something so spectacular and complex! 

We live in an increasingly paperless world these days and I am cool with that.  I own an e-reader and a tablet.  I love email.  And I certainly think there are advantages to less paper (like way less clutter!).  But there is still a place for the tangible, especially when it is a beautiful smooth and speckled card stock, just waiting to be printed with a doodled design! 

I hope this post inspires you to stop and admire the paper in your life!

Boxes of colorful envelopes from my favorite paper warehouse

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