We just returned from a whirlwind adventure to attend the New York Stationery Show where we launched many new items (including show favorite – our hand dipped cards which are remnant pieces that soak up the remaining dye bath from our silk work). It was a long awaited trip, as this is the largest wholesale trade show in the United States.
NSS booth display
“Now in its 68th year, the National Stationery Show® is the world’s most comprehensive marketplace for greeting cards, stationery and related lifestyle products. No other trade fair in the U.S. matches the depth and caliber of stationery selection at the NSS—or serves as the launching pad for so many young, creative businesses each year.”
Booth display – silk and paper
It is always a pleasure to connect and draw inspiration from other creatives in our market. In the past we have been intimidated by the quality of art and artist on display at this show which prevented our exhibiting, there are just stunning levels of creativity and craftsmanship on display. We have since realized that while we may not be at the top of the pack or offering the latest trends, we have unique and creative art to contribute and in turn have our place among industry leaders.
Silk ribbon and handmade papers at NSS 2014
A fun highlight was seeing our Seattle neighbor and sometimes silk collaborator Real Card Company at the show, and finally meeting the principals in our other longtime Seattle stationer Silberman/Brown. It was a fantastic (albeit exhausting) trip and we are already looking forward to attending next year!
I just wanted to drop a quick note to those folks considering using seed paper for their wedding or promotional items. When was the last time you bought a seed packet and started a garden? For some of us the answer was just last season we pushed our seeds into the soil for our garden veggies. For many of us, we have not held a seed for years. When we wanted to add flowers to our window box we bought starts from the grocery store, when we wanted that indoor plant we bought a mature plant from the big box home store. Many of us have had sunflower seeds at a baseball game or pumpkin seeds from our Jack-o-Lantern but have not touched a live seed nor potting soil since elementary school.
As papermakers who embed our paper with seeds, we often are asked about how our paper grows. The easy answer is “that depends on the gardener”. We test our seed paper extensively as we understand that people need to know that when they tell their family there invitation will bloom – it has to bloom! The problem with this situation is not the viability of the seeds but rather the inexperience of the gardener. We would love to offer a guarantee that you will have a beautiful garden of flowers when you plant our paper goods however there are just too many factors out of our control to offer such a guarantee. We can guarantee that our papers contain viable seeds that have the potential to grow but as you supply the conditions under which those plants are starting their tender lives, we cannot guarantee your success.
Our seed papers do have live seeds that can sprout if you properly care for them. If you cut the paper into escort cards or business cards; you will find enough viable seeds in the trimmed pieces that have the potential to sprout. That being said we have heard from people over the years who stopped watering their seeds in frustration after just three weeks when nothing pushed through the soil. With our paper there are seeds that can take six weeks to germinate. These people who expect immediate results and tire of caring for the seeds, letting them dry out; effectively killing them before they have the opportunity to sprout are more often then not disappointed with the paper (rather than their gardening). For this reason we do not offer a guarantee. We would be happy to mail you a free sample that you can carefully test under your own gardening conditions before you decide to use seed paper for your wedding or business event. Most people these days are very removed from soil and seeds. Most of us buy our plants (and vegetables) that have been started (or fully grown) by professionals under optimal conditions. If you are considering offering your guest or client the opportunity to start a flower from the seeds you send them keep in mind the challenges they will face.
The bulk of our seed paper contains the following seeds:
Mary used our seeded paper to create her save-the-date, featured in the invite suite above. We love working with all our brides, but this was one rather special considering she works for and sourced many of her wedding elements directly from Etsy. For a list of all Mary’s resources, check out her My Etsy Wedding page. And to follow Mary and Tim’s love story and their adventures in creating a sustainable life in Richmond, check out their blog 17 Apart.
OREEKO (Organic, Green, Eco, Blog) is a trusted resource on the web for “reviews, how-to guides, current news & ideas on how to simplify green living”. We were listed amongst a group of hefty competitors (7 to be exact) as resource for Eco Wedding Invitations in their Green Wedding series.
“The invite allows you to establish a direct line of connection with all your guests. Use it to make a statement that can be both memorable, personal and green!” We could not agree more!
Our excerpt from the post:
“OF THE EARTH
Soft colors and delicate nuances give these wedding invitations a very romantic and natural feel. They use Lotka paper made from the bark of the Daphne bush, a renewable resource from Nepal. All lotka envelopes and paper are 50% recycled and 100% tree free. The paper is also acid free and your purchase will benefit the economic enterprise of rural craftspeople in Nepal. The company also makes a cotton & abaca paper, created without chemical resources and with special attention to water conservation.”
Our only surprise was that our greenest product trait – that our papers generate oxygen when planted – was not mentioned in the flattering description of our goods.
You can read the entire post here and follow the OREEKO blog, which covers everything from weddings to style to food and health, here. It is a favorite read in our world – many thanks to OREEKO for the nod!
2013 was a monumental year for our business: we moved, our shop and clients received a wide array of press, we have segued back into the tradeshow circuit….oh, and did we mention we are rebuilding our website? All in all, much has been accomplished and there is much to look forward to in 2014!
We are now offering a finished edge silk ribbon (not just bias cut).
We have added many new papers to our already large line, including these papers from India.
There is much to look forward to in 2014 including the events and tradeshows we will be attending!
Seattle Wedding Show Washington State Convention & Trade Center Saturday January 11th, 2014 10:00am to 5:30pm (ticket sales open at 9:30am) Sunday January 12th, 2014 10:30am to 5:00pm (ticket sales open at 10:00am)
Seattle Gift Show Washington State Convention & Trade Center
Saturday January 18th, 2014 9:00am to 6:00pm
Sunday January 19th, 2014 9:00am-6:00pm
Monday January 20th, 2014 9:00am-6:00pm
Tuesday January 21st, 2014 9:00am-6:00pm
We announced earlier this year a partnership with Sashaco, a local (Kirkland, Washington) startup company who began buying our silks last year and makes beautiful hair clips and pins out of our ribbons. Here we have a collection of photos of their wonderful work!
As 2013 winds down, we find ourselves without much time to reflect on what a crazy year it has been as we are looking forward to what 2014 has in store for us. We expect big things to come from this and our other (soon to be revealed) partnerships as we keep our eyes on what is next.
I am sure you will agree, these silk flowers are fantastic! We have over 170 colors now in our silk line and there are so many that would work beautifully in this clip format. Imagine the brides who can color coordinate their whole suite of paper goods with their bridal party attire, just by tying together the ribbon on their invitation with the ribbon in their flower girl’s hair. What do you think?
Our green flower print handmade wrapping paper was included in a round-up of holiday wrapping options in Artizen Magazine.
“Artizen magazine’s goal is to spread the love with inside scoops on the artisan and handmade industry.” The magazine is free to readers and offers myriad of inspiring images and projects. We love seeing the creative holiday uses for our papers and we also love being recognized by our fellow artisans – what a compliment!
While we don’t like to contribute to the frenzy of the season, we know there are only a few shopping days left and hope you consider using handmade, beautiful packaging this year. A thoughtful and lovely finishing touch to even the most practical or impractical of gifts – you can check out our selection of papers here.
Here is a quick look at the Northlake Wedding Program for the Center for Urban Horticulture event space. We are using our Earth Silk ribbon blend #016 in conjunction with the lotka seed paper, black print and a light weight slate background. We think this says Whimsical Romance! What do you think?
Spend the day “cruising around the Northlake Area in limos and party buses while visiting an array of beautiful venues and talented wedding vendors along the way”.
Tickets are $20 and include transportation to each venue, a sampling of the amazing featured catering options and gift bags for the first 50 guests!
The Tour will begin at UW Center for Urban Horticulture with registration taking place from 10:00am – 12:30pm. Transportation will be provided from 11am-4pm.
Be sure to stop by our booth at the first stop on the tour – the Center for Urban Horticulture (where our earth friendly goods will be fittingly displayed). Say “hello” and check out a few of our favorite invite samples and the most popular designs of 2013. OH, we will also be offering a sneak peek of next season’s collection – something you will not want to miss! See you there!
It appears we have officially segued into the fashion industry: we have launched our very first silk ribbon wrap design! This is a one yard length of our hand dyed silk that is finished with two pointed ends and a seam stitch along the entire length.
Our modern take on the classic “fairy ribbon” design is available in over 150 color options. These Earth Silk ribbons are made by hand in our Seattle studio. We measure, mix, dye, rinse, wash, dry, fold, iron, stitch and sew to bring you this great wrist accessory.
The wrap is a thoughtful, eco-gift idea and an easy and affordable accessory option to elevate any ensemble. After years of inquiries, we are excited to offer to offer a hand dyed silk ribbon option to our jewelry-designing and accessorizing clients worldwide!