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Starting a Creative Collective May 13 2022

Imagine a world in which we share our gifts.

When resources are scarce, we can pull ourselves inward. Like the folk story, Stone Soup, where the villagers did not want to offer their food to strangers simply because they were strangers. They wanted to remain isolated - to shut out people they felt ungenerous toward, depriving themselves at the same time. We would all feel richer, sharing and receiving, with equal abandon and abundance. In the same vein as the Stone Soup strangers, Kelsey Pike and Adri Luna had the genius to create a vision of feast and good fortune that needed testing, and the journey of Cherry Pit Collective was born.
Simple Beginnings:
Kelsey Pike was looking for a studio space for her hand papermaking business. She longed to reignite a communal studio much like her art school days. Kelsey saw an article about Maker Village, a community wood and metal shop in an underdeveloped area of downtown Kansas City, Missouri. She inquired about available space, explaining her vision: The idea of a communal studio for artists, makers, and creatives where the work and vision of women, non-binary, and marginalized genders/communities are supported and celebrated. The building owners loved the idea as they had been rehabbing the space and were ready to install final details.
Looking towards the Collective's front-facing windows.
Artists need adequate lighting for work throughout the day and night, heating & cooling throughout the year and plenty of electrical outlets for various tools required to create.
Ignited by the first steps, Kelsey and Adri Luna began forming and refining. Working with the landlords, they designed and build-out (and eventually up) the interior space that would become Cherry Pit Collective.
Part of the Pit Collective.
Enter and feel a sense of comfort, inclusion, and safety.
The warehouse, nestled between Maker Village KC and Oddities Print Shop, resides in the center of Kansas City, MO, near the corner of 31st and Cherry. Kelsey and Adri loved the exposed brick interior, thirty-foot ceilings, and tons of natural light from its south-facing glass panel front. There is a mixture of wood and cement floors and an additional skylight at the apex of the roof. The vision was open-ended studio spaces ranging from thirty to two-hundred square feet with simple wooden partitions designating each maker space while still creating community. They kept the basement open with its ten-foot ceilings. Most of the work was completed in 2016. By the summer of 2021 the final touch of a loft, financed by the building owners, was completed. The loft area, built towards the back of the building, houses an ingenious papermaking set-up, washer & dryer, plus an area used for orders and shipping needs.
How did they do it? Money & Resources.
Viewpoint from the front door.
One: Friends & Family Two: Kickstarter & Exceptional Donors Three: Shear Hutzpah Kelsey and Adri wanted to create a space to support female-identifying and marginalized genders/communities.

- There was a story to tell.

A look-see at a workspace.

Like many makers and artists, most work from home, their bedrooms, kitchens, dining room tables, and ill-equipped basement spaces doing double duty. Creators pushed projects aside to accommodate family, children, roommates, day jobs, side businesses, and housework, with a lack of professional places to discuss collaborations and projects that were safe and quiet enough. Cherry Pit Collective would provide dedicated spaces for members to create, meet, and make, leaving home responsibilities to arrive at Cherry Pit Collective. Folks could come ready to work, focused, with space, light, comfort, and community, no longer isolated but in a safe environment for the development and growth of female-fronted businesses. Members would work together to support and promote each other through a shared workspace, shared environment keeping, costs, benefits, and risks. The collective would include monthly programming and skill-sharing events while creating a community of local makers - fostering collaboration over competition. So, in June of 2016, Kelsey and Adri ran a Kickstarter to raise $10,000 for a building deposit and final build-out expenses. For thirty-six days, Kickstarter offered possibilities. Cherry Pit Collective supplied their vision video and perks to backers for exclusive items made by local artists and folks who would be bringing their creativity and community to the Collective. In addition, throughout the campaign, the fledgling collective-to-be hosted a final push event called the Cherry Bomb-A-Thon. The campaign was a success and ended up $180 over the $10,000 goal. ​The Kickstarter took care of much-needed lighting, heating, cooling, and the build-out of electric outlets, making the space more affordable for its members at the get-go.
Welcome to Cherry Pit Collective.
Paying for these expenses upfront, with funds from friends, family, colleagues, and patrons keeps the space more affordable for members. In addition to crowdfunding efforts, they supplemented with annual fundraising events, classes, and monthly fees from members. If you are an artist or craftsperson in the Kansas City area, you may benefit from the minds at Cherry Pit Collective. They host workshops and classes on topics small art businesses need to succeed, such as craft fair booth set-up, filing taxes, fine-tuning SEO for your online shop, and how to get products into local businesses. Q & A with Kelsey Pike What are some obstacles to creating a Collective? In the beginning, we had trouble finding the right balance of work between members. As members grew to know and trust one another and felt autonomy and agency as members of the collective, it was increasingly easy to divide tasks based on personal interests and skills.
Crysta Henthorne - Illustrator, Graphic Designer, and Painter.
Members handle all aspects of managing the collective, including cleaning, promotional work, class programming, event coordination, and member recruitment. What is the significance of being a female-only space? The original mission was to fill the studio with hard-working artists & makers. The first dozen happened to be female-identifying which worked so well that we intentionally moved in that direction, making members feel comfortable, safe, and relaxed while working, freeing themselves, which is sometimes challenging in male-centric workplaces. How important is networking for artists and makers? A community feel is deeply integral to networking, rather than trying to meet the right people or make specific connections. Our collective builds on members with varying skill levels and backgrounds. Businesses are a decade or older, while others are just starting. The aim is to learn from each other. Fresh perspectives help seasoned makers see different vantage points, and established artists offer experiential advice. Members encourage each other to try new approaches, share unique specialties and support each other.
Kelsey Pike working in her papermaking studio.
Kelsey, how did you begin your business - Sustainable Paper+Craft? I learned papermaking in 2010 when I took a class at KCAI called Materials & Methods. I fell in love with the process and decided to make paper for the rest of my life. I started an Etsy shop at the end of that year. The original concept was to sell handmade paper sketchbooks I made as a studio project. The initial sketchbooks sold out. I did the math and realized the direction had to change, and selling loose paper sheets to other artists became the focus. In my senior year, dreading graduation and no longer having access to the paper studio, the thought of never making paper was disheartening. I finished with a degree from the Kansas City Art Institute in Art History and a minor in Printmaking. I tried for grants and got rejected, so I combined my Etsy profits with graduation gifts and purchased my own Hollander beater and other studio equipment that I still use. Initially, how important was branding to you with Sustainable Paper+Art? At the start, my concern with branding was minimal. My primary focus was making the highest quality papers that would perform in a way that brought people back for more. Over time, I made a logo, picked a font, created a website with photos, and it all went uphill from there. Did you have a mission when starting Sustainable Paper+Craft? I had no mission. I just knew I loved making paper and was good at it. More than anything, I wanted people to use what I was making because of its beauty, functionality, a pleasure to the eye, and forgiving qualities.

Kelsey's advice for fledgling makers/starting their own company

Sharpen your craft ⋅ Spend hours, days, and months learning ⋅ Become the expert ⋅ Travel if you can ⋅ Learn from masters ⋅ Read the books ⋅ Never stop practicing and stretching yourself ⋅ Listen and give back

What are the challenges creatives face in your city? Kansas City is a great place to live because it is still relatively affordable. As an artist or entrepreneur, you can pursue your creative interest and still afford to live comfortably. This idea is not lost on the community here and has created a saturation of creatives. With saturation in any field comes competition, the fear that every new venture is somehow detracting from your own. I confirm there is space for further cultivation of new ideas to develop success.
Kelsey Pike and Lauren Pearlman at Cherry Pit Collective in Kansas City, Missouri.
What physical aspects of your co-working community make people feel at home and welcome? The space has several shared areas, open to all members, making it feel like a cozy home. The kitchen, large communal eating area, lounge, and a big backyard with a fire pit give space to individuals outside their studio. Workspaces are open to the communal area, encouraging exchange between studio mates. It is impossible to arrive and not see who else is working, welcoming conversation and closeness. What are your top 3 tips for people hesitant to join a co-working space? We designed our membership admission process to ensure a mutual best fit. Our written application requires answering personal questions, then informal interviews and coffee meetings with members. If the candidate passes all these gateways, we know they will be a great addition, ensuring we have chosen them based on fit and what they offer the collective, as much as them choosing us. For any collective, Kelsey suggests the following:
  1. Test it out. Depending on the space, this might mean attending an event, going for a tour, or checking out open studio hours.
  2. Be your authentic self from day one. You want to connect with meaning and sincerity. These are people you'll see regularly. Allow them to get to know you and be a support system.
  3. Once your space is secured, spend time there. You make connections by showing up.
  4. If applicable, try volunteering in a way that will make you a valuable member of your community.
Cherry Pit Collective stands on ancestral land, honored with gratitude, the land itself and the people who have and continue to steward it - to the people of Kiikaapo (Kikapoo), Wazhazhe Mazhá (Osage), Kaw (Kansa), and Očhéthi Šakówin (Sioux). Kelsey Pike co-founded Cherry Pit Collective, a communal studio space for artists, makers, and creatives, where the work and vision of women are emphasized and celebrated. Kelsey is the cornerstone in creating an environment of members who work, support, and promote each other through a shared workspace and creative communing. Cherry Pit Collective hosts programs fostering collaboration over competition. You can locate Kelsey and view Cherry Pit Collective: Kelsey@Sustainablepapercraft.com cherrypitcollective.com Cherry Pit Collective on Facebook Cherry Pit Collective on Instagram
Fricka Jones - Artist, Writer, Editor
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The Lotus Position November 16 2021


Using Varietal Papers with Different Effects
Softly Spoken using PCI Paper
9 Wonderful Templates
There is little as soothing as folded paper art. The repetitive motion, sharp and crisp lines - fold, flip, fold, flip. The rhythm is comforting, hypnotic. I chose one of 9 templates from Brother Industries, their Lotus Flower. I used Brother's straightforward tutorial and selected papers that could handle multiple folds. The smaller I went, the thinner and more resilient the paper. Great choices from Paper Connection include the Yuzen paper line or Katazome, for starters. Give Itajimishi a go or try Lokta. Patterned, embedded, crinkled, solid, or semi-translucent, experimenting and outcomes trigger different appeals. I overprinted using my Canon PRO-100, which created a whole other feel. Note: Not all printers can handle heavier or fragile papers. My Canon PRO-100 has served me well. If I have a concerning substrate, such as felted paper, I back the material with a full-size/removable adhesive label paper from Dennison or Staples. Removable adhesive labels keep the paper stable as it goes through the printer.

“Make it your own.”


Lovely notes or perhaps beautiful hanging objects. Felted flowers, table placards, or an added adornment to create a moment of peace. Thank you Brother!

our papers help tell your story

fricka - artist in residence - our papers help tell your story

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New Papers, New Year January 04 2017

A new year, and new papers! As we say good bye to 2016, we look ahead to a year full of making great art and using great paper! As we expand our line of fine art papers, we hope that this new selection will be among your new favorites for 2017. new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper See what's new: Bunkoshi: a sturdy, heavyweight paper, ideal for all sort of fine art applications, such as printmaking, painting, drawing, and even book pages. New Heavy Creped Paper White coated for inkjet printing; print and sculpt! Price is a steal at $1.00/sheet! Kizuki-shi 4Monme: a crisp, lightweight kozo that is great for painting, drawing, and of course, printmaking. It is made using unbleached kozo bark.
gampi, kitakata, large format papers, new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper X Large HW Natural Gampi Sheets with deckle edge
gampi paper, kitakata, large format paper, new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper X Large HW Natural Gampi Sheet
XL Gampi: Can't get enough gampi? For all you gampi believers out there, this is the one you've been waiting for. An extra large 1 square METER plus! of gampi. It is lusciously large and almost opaque at 90g/m². Show us what you create with this giant sheet!
masa paper, rolled papers, printmaking paper, drawing, new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper Masa Soft White Roll 30 meters!
MASA: We have a masa paper in sheets and rolls. Such as Masa Soft White, Masa White, and Masa Soft White in 30-meter rolls. For further description of using with relief prints, please read here.
A.I.J.P., Awagami, inkjet paper, alternative photography, digital photography, bamboo paper, new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper A.I.J.P. Awagami Inkjet Paper
Alternative/Digital Photography Paper: The union of photography on washi has been a good one, and keeps getting better with the innovative uses of photographers who want something different than the glossy finish of photo paper.
new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper, digital printing A.I.J.P. Awagami Inkjet Paper
Paper Connection offers a wide array of coated papers for this new and exciting world. Not sure which photo paper to pick? Try our assorted sample pack!
new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper A.I.J.P Assorted A4 Samples
A.I.J.P., Awagami, Inkjet Paper, bamboo paper, digital photography, alternative photography, new papers, new fine art papers, washi, washi paper, Photomontage called "Red Dress" by Yana Filkovsky-Saito on A.I.J.P bamboo paper
For more about Yana's show please read our blog here.

Paper Sizing 101 March 13 2015

Sizing, dosa, wheat pasteMany of our readers are quite knowledgeable when it comes to sizing your own paper, especially sizing your "go-to" paper. Here is a step-by-step "recipe" for cooking up your own sizing and applying it to your favorite Eastern paper.
The photos shown here are mostly depicting sizing made from wheat starch. Nope!, it's not a gluten-free, but not a problem for the paper, and a nice alternative to animal-based sizing. Exciting news regarding plant-based sizing... last night we received a new Eastern paper, already pre-sized with devil's root starch, "konnyaku" -no animals used at all with this process, only human labor. Photos will be posted soon on social media. We have entertained many varying viewpoints on sizing and sizing recipes. What are yours? Please share below, along with your experiences in making your own sizing. In the meantime, enjoy our sizing tests, made in our paper "kitchen", here in Providence. Adding sizing to paper affects the paper fibers’ sensitivity to humidity, absorption, and bleeding. There are many materials that can be used to size paper; we will cover the sizing procedure for gelatin size and wheat paste. It is not unlike cooking, where 90% of the procedure is preparation. This method allows for easy application with a large soft-bristle brush.

Gelatin Sizing Recipe:

This is the recipe for rabbit skin glue that can be used to size paper. (Please note: the gelatin size will need to be prepared 8-12 hours in advance.) What you will need:
  • Rabbit skin glue: 1/3 Cup (powdered or solid sticks)
  • Crystalline Alum: 1 Pinch (potassium aluminum sulfate)
  • Double boiler with lid (a glass jar and sauce pan will also work)
  • 16–32 oz. plastic / glass container (glass is recommended)
  • Soft-bristle brush
Step One: Soak the glue in a quart of cold water for several hours until it swells and softens. (With solid sticks this may take overnight or 12+ hours). Sizing, dosa, animal skin glue Step Two: Once the glue has softened and becomes gelatinous, heat in a double boiler. The mixture should be stirred continuously until the gelatin has dissolved and the glue has become one consistent solution. (Note: never allow glue to boil). Remove from heat and stir in 1 pinch of alum. Allow the glue to cool slightly and apply warm to your paper. Apply one coat to the side you intend to use and allow to dry completely on newsprint. Additional coats may be added as necessary. Sizing, dosa, animal skin glue, wheat pasteSizing, dosa, animal skin glue, wheat paste Sizing, dosa, animal skin glue, wheat paste The remaining size solution can be saved in a jar in the refrigerator, and only requires heating to be used again. Note that storage length will vary from weeks to even months depending on several factors. Water quality is most important - bacteria and particulates can promote mold, and temperature should not be extreme. Solution should not freeze nor temps be too high. Sizing, dosa, animal skin glue, wheat pasteSizing, dosa, animal skin glue, wheat paste

Wheat Paste Recipe:

This is the recipe for wheat paste that can be used to size paper.(Please note: the wheat paste will need to be prepared one day in advance.) What you will need:
  • Wheat starch: 1/3 cup
  • Double boiler with lid (a glass jar and sauce pan will also work)
  • 16–32 oz. plastic / glass container (glass is recommended)
  • Measuring cup (1/4 cup – 1/2 cup size)
  • Soft-bristle brush
  • Nylon fabric
Step One: Fill the bottom of the double boiler with cold water and place on your heat source at a medium heat setting and bring to a low boil. (Alternatively, if you do not have a double boiler a glass jar placed in a saucepan works as well. Add enough water to submerge 1/3 of the jars height.) Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Step Two: While you are waiting, measure out your wheat starch and water. We used a 4:1 ratio. 4 parts water to 1 part wheat starch: 11/3 cup of water to 1/3 cup of wheat starch. Mix the starch and water together in the top pan of the double boiler, (or the jar for those who are not using the double boiler) Mix thoroughly, making sure none of the starch has stuck to the bottom. The resulting mixture should be an opaque white solution resembling milk. Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Once you have mixed the ingredients place the pan over the boiling water (or place your jar in the pan) and stir continuously until the mixture begins to thicken. The mixture will thicken to the consistency of heavy cream and small “chunks” will begin to form. Continue stirring until smooth and the mixture has the consistency of custard. Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Step Three: Now the mixture can be covered and allowed to cook over a low boil for 25 minutes, with a quick stir every 5 minutes. The paste should continue to thicken and become somewhat translucent as it cooks. After you’ve allowed the paste to cook, add small amounts of hot water from the pan to your mixture and stir until the paste is smooth and custard like. Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Pour the paste from your pan into your designated container and allow it to cool in a refrigerator over night. This is to allow the paste to gel into a homogeneous solid. Sizing, dosa, wheat paste Step Four: Once the paste has gelled, wring a small amount through a piece of fabric: nylon, cotton, handkerchief, etc… Slowly add small amounts of water and mix with a brush until the paste is thin enough to apply with a brush to your paper. Apply one coat to each side and allow to dry completely on newsprint. Additional coats may be added as necessary. Sizing, dosa, wheat pasteSizing, dosa, wheat paste Sizing, dosa, wheat pasteSizing, dosa, wheat paste Remember: As with all size, test for each use, and dilute as appropriate. If in doubt, thin and apply multiple coats. Allow the paper to completely dry between each coat. The best way to learn how much size to use, and when to use it is through experience and experimentation. Sizing, dosa, wheat paste, gelatin, rabbit skin glue

DIY Container Wrapping Tutorial February 14 2014

DIY, upcycle, marbled paper, hand made, craft, containerHow about wrapping a simple empty cookie tin to pretty-up your desk or kitchen storage, make a quick vase or gift?

After our last DIY tutorial, we felt ready to tackle wrapping a tin with some beautiful hand-made marbled lokta from Nepal to make a unique up-cycled object. What you will need: Frame supplies editTIN-1 Step One: Cut down a piece of paper to the size of the tin, leaving about a 1/4 inch extra on the top and bottom and at least one inch added to the length. Apply a coat of glue to the backside of the paper, and make sure you get all the edges.TIN-2Step Two: Place the tin centered (vertically) on the paper leaving an extra 1/4 inch on the top and bottom to be folded over later. Align the tin at one end of the paper and roll it slowly with two hands, smoothing the paper from the center out as you go. TIN-3TIN-4 Step Three: Pinch the extra paper around the edge of the tin on the top and bottom. Cut out a circle big enough to cover exposed tin area on bottom and adhere cut circle with glue. Burnish out any wrinkles and you're done! You can apply a clear coat of acrylic medium to the finished object to protect the surface, and add a slight sheen. This will also make the colors appear more saturated. You can also rub a clear wax candle (solid wax) to cover the paper to create a barrier, helping resist oil stains and fingerprints.TIN-5TIN-6

1 Blog, 3 Novembers January 04 2013

2012 over!?! That was amazingly quick. I guess I do spend much of my time on the road and it is clear traveling or rather “not being home” speeds up time! To switch things up in my dual-life pattern, I spent the fall of 2012 in the East Coast of the US for a change. First DC, then Cleveland (noted in the previous blog. Early November started with a bang, with one the best Paper Connection Annual Holiday Warehouse sales ever! Then, more excitement by mid-November, as my staff and I organized a 4-day visit from a Paper Rock Star guest-Ms. Aimee Lee in Providence, RI. We had an awesome turn out for Ms. Lee’s hanji talk, demo and new book signing: Hanji Unfurled. After Ms. Lee’s successful visit to Rhode Island, I got to enjoy a “real” Thanksgiving with relatives, turkey and pies; it had been many years! Surely a day to recognize all that we have and all that we have in abundance. November, 2012 was certainly packed full with a cornucopia of accomplishments; I am very thankful, no matter what month it is.
Gloucester, RI Nov. 22.2012 Gloucester, RI Nov. 22.2012
Pies Nov. 22, 2012 Pies Nov. 22, 2012
By December, 2012, my suitcase was re-packed, and currently I am back on the other side of the globe. Since I’ll be on the road again shortly; heading to Seoul next week, I thought I would turn to TWO past abundant Novembers. Reflecting back as time springs forward. November, 2011: Journeyed north to Tokohu- the Northeast of Japan: For several reasons, this voyage to Tohoku was quite meaningful, especially post the March 11, 2011 disasters. The main goal was to check on my very good friend, who had moved back to the Tohoku area on March 1, 2011, I hadn’t seen her family since 1986. My friend warned me that all the coastal places we visited in 1986 “ARE GONE”, she wrote days after the tsunami hit. Another reason for going to Tohoku was to get a sense of the general post 3.11 feeling of the Tohoku survivors, where so many mingei-folk arts are/were born. The bonus of this trip was visiting with Mr. Koichi Odanaka at his studio. It was my privilege to meet Mr. Keisuke Serizawa’s last apprentice. I thoroughly enjoyed the back stories Mr. Odanaka told of his life with Mr. and Mrs. Serizawa in Tokyo. So it was a gratifying trip- educational and moving at the same time.Odanakas Work Odanaka’s work is truly irresistible. Although, it’s not something I stock at this point, I would like to support as many artists as possible in the Tohoku region of Japan. Let me know if you’re interested in any of his work; I’ll see what I can do! Here are a few of his stenciled items I purchased: calendar and textiles. November, 2010: Traveled, by plane, to Toyama-ken for the first time ever.
Fuji from the plane. Fuji from the plane.
Old Town of Yatsuo Old Town of Yatsuo
For centuries Toyama was known as the main pharmaceutical producing area of Japan. Back before plastic bottles with cotton stuffing, all medicines were wrapped with washi. The area was previously known as “Etchu” so the paper from the area is called "Etchu Washi".
washi bags& wrappers for medicines washi bags & wrappers for medicines
Of course, the need for washi dropped off with the invention of new packaging, but a young Mr. Yoshida, moved back to his hometown of Yatsuo, giving up a city life and a city job to start a washi-making mill in the small, well-preserved town of Yatsuo, not too far from Toyama City. Mr. Yoshida knew he had to make paper for new uses, so he decided to make kozo paper for artwork. Mr. Yoshida befriended the katazome master himself, Mr. Keisuke Serizawa, while he was working up at Ogawamachi in Saitama, making his own paper for his stencil work. Mr. Yoshida convinced Mr. Serizawa to try some Yatsuo paper (Etchu Washi) for his stencil work. From that point forward, Mr. Serizawa used the kozo paper made at Mr. Yoshida’s newly fashioned mill. FormingBlackKozosheetsIt was a start of what would become a long business relationship and friendship. Both the Yoshidas and the Serizawa’s had a deep connection with mingei and both had the passion to carry the tradition of washi and katazome into the future. Currently, the next generation of the Yoshida family run a paper shop, mill and incredible folk art museum, which houses the collection of the Yoshida parents. Thanks to the friendship between the Yoshida family and the Serizawa family, this Yatsuo operation called Keijyusha continues to produce decorated katazome papers, stationery items and collectible calendars employing Serizawa’s original stencils.Lookforthesign
kakishibu paper "rug" kakishibu paper "rug" in Museum.

There are still a few 2013 Serizawa desk calendars for sale at Paper Connection and many beautiful items in stock and for sale from this precious operation in Yatsuo. Please call us or email us for more information.SerizawaProducts

Serizawa Calendars and Serizawa stencil biz card holders. etc. Serizawa Calendars and Serizawa stencil biz card holders. etc.

Joomchi! Everybody's talking about it! October 03 2012

Korea claims a unique and intriguing art called joomchi. How do you go about making joomchi? It's easier to try with your own hands than to explain in words...but here it goes. This is my beginner's understanding of the process: At least 2 layers of Korean mulberry paper, or hanji, are first wet, then, aggressively gripped, grabbed, stretched, and manipulated until the fibers are broken down and almost "felted" to your liking. Hours of aggravating the paper are expended, while possibly years of angst is relieved. A major transformation occurs; once flat sheets of paper become a very organic, leather-like, almost living form. No adhesives are used, however, natural dyes, pigments, other papers, fibers, and cloth can be "collaged" in to create a very special mixed media paper art. We learned that Japanese mulberry paper (kozo) works fine for making joomchi, as our colleague Barbara Green tested it. She used Paper Connection's senkashi (a heavy weight un-dyed kozo paper, traditionally used for clothing) and some vintage, pigmented kozo. I finally made it to the nearby Atrium Gallery in Providence to see one of their latest shows: Joomchi and Beyond, curated by Ms. Jiyoung Chung. I blogged briefly about Ms. Chung and her exhibit at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, last June, 2011. Subsequently, I was lucky enough to attend her workshop early spring 2012. Many of the works shown at the Atrium are part of Ms. Chung's fantastic book also entitled Joomchi and Beyond. Please see Jiyoung's book for photos of her method and process. She is a great teacher. For more photos of the show, click here. Another artist who works with hanji and creates joomchi is Aimee Lee.
I am this wall, 2009, by Aimee Lee
It is truly amazing when you think that no adhesives are used, and all the papers are transformed by hand technique alone. I love this use of natural persimmon juice by Aimee:
The squirrels arrived first, 2012, Aimee Lee, natural persimmon dye, hanji, paper yarn
Ms. Lee is just out with her new book Hanji Unfurled, which details her research and works on hanji. Can't wait to meet her in 2 weeks at the Morgan! Aimee is also planning a book signing tour in New England in November, thus I'm hoping she will come to Providence and Paper Connection, of course! Who's in for meeting Aimee Lee and talking paper?!?!

Introducing Allyson DuPont June 15 2012

Allyson is a local graphic and package designer who uses paper including our paper. We are always happy to see her smiling face. Below is Allyson's use of our Lokta Brown Berry and Vine paper in the center note cube.
Our Lokta Brown Berry paper takes center stage as one of Allyson DuPont's note cubes, as seen on etsy.
A RISD grad with a BFA in Graphic Design, Allyson runs her own design business while supporting disability advocacy projects through her work: website design, print design, branding and identity, and developing her own stationery and invitation line on etsy. Please read (here) more about Allyson and why I was inspired to introduce you to her on this blog. Thanks Allyson! So glad you made the paper connection....

Washi Tape plus more cuteness! April 12 2012

Back in the fall of 2011 I met this young, talented designer, while at the Kokeshi Festival in Tokyo. I couldn't resist but bring her irresistible designs to you, here in "America" via PaperNado.com. These incredibly cute washi tapes, vintage patterned papers, letter sets and tiny messenger dolls; all just arrived! Contact: info@papernado.com.

Can you stand the cuteness?!


My Visit to Marimekko Tokyo March 10 2012

Honestly, I would have loved to have gone to Helsinki this year for the 50th anniversary of Marimekko; dreamed about going to those special anniversary events happening at the Marimekko Village......but alas, a couple weeks ago, for my quick fix, I had the chance to go in the Marimekko store in Tokyo's Ometesando. Snapped these few photos... Even just that brief experience got me all jazzed up and ready for spring! Speaking of "jazzed up" I'm heading to New Orleans next week for the first time! Promoting Paper Connection's unique papers at the SGC International Conference. If you are attending I would love to meet you, so stop by and say hi.