As we mentioned in our last blog, we’ve recently launched our Women We Love initiative, celebrating women-owned, led, and supported brands, which includes one of our favorites, Seltzer Goods. We chatted with Gay Lam, founder and CEO of Seltzer Goods, to find out how she started this amazing business, what inspires her and her team, and what she sees for the future of the brand.
Describe how Seltzer Goods was started. I know you were originally based in New York City and now call Asheville home.
Seltzer Goods started in New York City, where I was taking design classes at FIT. To support myself, I worked as a sales rep for stationery lines that I knew from being a buyer for my store in San Francisco. When I met Brian (on Friendster, if that gives you an indication of the year we met!) he was leaving his job as a copywriter and was going to start his own business. Somehow I wrangled him into starting one with me instead! The combination of my experience in retail and merchandising, and his copywriting, clicked and became Seltzer Goods.
Your greeting cards are made on 100% recycled paper and you make your products as eco-friendly as possible. Why does that matter to Seltzer Goods and why should it matter to everyone?
As a creator of products, it’s really important to make items long-lasting or sustainable in some way. It’s about the environment and also about doing your best work as a company. We use a litho printer that is zero carbon and has very high environmental standards. The paper is FSC-certified and 100% post-consumer recycled, custom made for us in the USA.
Our customers care about the environment, and we care about the environment, because having a future matters.
How do you keep Seltzer Goods fresh and new? Where do you draw inspiration from?
Seltzer releases a new collection of items every few months!
We are literally always working on new ideas and designs, and I sketch and write every day. Our inspiration comes from observing the culture that we live in, which is really fascinating, and we like to make commentary with wit, humor, and a sense of style. Women do everything in one day, going from work to play to fitness to family in a seamless movement of moments. We want to create Tools for Modern Living that help women live their best, multi-faceted, complex lives.
We know that Seltzer Goods is a women-led company and makes a lot of products with women in mind, especially your Feminist collection. Tell us how you came up with these fun, empowering pieces.
We are really inspired by the changing lives of women, and the strong girls that are growing up to dream big and achieve their goals! Women have more options now: attaining an education, getting married or not, owning a business, having multiple careers, maybe a third act after retirement.
The milestones in a woman’s life are not as limited as they used to be, and women want to wear the flair that speaks to this newfound freedom. That’s why we made our Feminist Buttons, and our favorite thing is to find new ways for people to express themselves! And the Feminist Definition Tote is so simple but just had to be put out into the world.
Is there a fun product idea or trend that you’d like to tackle but haven’t had the chance to yet?
Life is always inspiring new ideas. We are working on new products for 2019 now, but I can’t divulge our secrets! I’d also like to write books about small business, for women who want to own their own businesses. I’ll call it my “Business Ma’am” series.
What do you see for the future of Seltzer Goods?
Seltzer Goods is always evolving. Our team is improving, learning to be better every day, whether in design, writing, or running the company. Our future is creating products that make women’s lives better.
Anything else you’d like our customers to know?
How much we appreciate the support they give us. As customers and as women-led businesses, we set an example of how women can support each other.
To shop the full Seltzer Goods collection available at Paper Source, click here.
We’re super excited and not just because spring is in the air.
In case you don’t know, March is Women’s History Month and March 8th is International Women’s Day, so we thought it was the perfect time to kick off our “Women We Love” initiative.
Our CEO Winnie Park said it best, “As a company with a history of empowering women, it is time to celebrate our fellow innovators both nationally and internationally, bringing awareness to the importance of equality in our society. We are excited to provide our customers an opportunity to support the Women’s Empowerment movement in a special and unique way.”
We’re also proud to say our own design team here at Paper Source is all women. They’re responsible for creating all the original illustrations, iconography and hand-lettering seen across all of our exclusive products. They’re also the creative team behind our exclusive paper craft kits. They plan out all the die cuts, folds and techniques required to turn a simple piece of paper into a flower, wreath or cute little creature. Each of our designers brings their own unique vision to our design and products, hopefully inspiring you to do something creative every day.
And speaking of creative, we’ll have special “Women We Love” DIY activities in stores all throughout Spring, like our Empowerment Banner Mini Workshop which will be available for customers now through March 11th. On March 8th, both men and women alike can attend an open craft event to create women-themed posters and stickers in support of International Women’s Day on March 8th.
Equality and empowerment have always been an important ethos at Paper Source, starting with our founder Sue Lindstrom, so it is natural for our brand to support and to celebrate the continued journey for gender equality.
We hope you’ll join us in celebrating the special women that make up the fabric of our lives. #pscelebrateswomen
Don’t let Hollywood have all the fun – If you’re planning on watching the Academy Awards ceremony this year, why not bring the stars into your home with an Oscar party of your own? Make the night a five star affair for you and your guests with this collection of ideas and party essentials to help you throw a party worthy of winning its own Oscar statuette.
It’s not an Oscars party without a star studded line-up. Nominate your friends to attend the big bash with a glamorous Facebook invite. We’ve supplied you with an exclusive banner to use for your Facebook event. If you’re feeling extra festive, check out our Paper Bar to whip up your own formal invitations.
After your guests have walked the red carpet in their stunning outfits, have them fill out an Oscar ballot. Add a little friendly competition to the voting by awarding a prize to whoever has the most accurate ballot at the end of the night. Print out copies of our free downloadable ballot for everyone to fill out with their favorite nominees and place in a custom ballot box.
Tune in and watch the drama unfold in real time with your guests. Get ready to laugh as Jimmy Kimmel roasts every celebrity in the audience, and have plenty of tissues on hand while watching all the moving acceptance speeches. Don’t forget to have plenty of food on hand if you’re going to make it all the way to the Best Picture announcement. These Kraft Treat Boxes with Gold Foil Polka Dots would be the perfect way to serve up popcorn and other treats! Our Pop the Bubbly Napkins would be the perfect way to glam up your event and keep those pesky drink stains off your table.
When the show is over, see how everyone’s votes tallied up and declare the winner of this year’s Academy Award Viewing Party. As you hand them their very own Oscar, prepare for a hilarious acceptance speech. We’ve come up with a quick and easy way to make Oscar statues to award to the winners of the night.
Cut out the Oscar silhouette from our free download and trace the shape over two pieces of Antique Gold paper. Cut out your two silhouettes. Next cut a slit halfway down the center of one of the silhouettes. Cut halfway up the center of the other silhouette, until reaching the point where you stopped cutting the first statue. Join the two silhouettes together at the slits to make a three dimensional statue. Use tape to secure the two pieces together. We then used a strip of gold paper to cover the tape. Cut a strip of black paper and label it with an award for the night. We used the Uniball Silver Gel Pen. Tape the black strip around the Oscar statue into a ring and you’re statue is ready! Prepare a collection of various awards to make the winning even more fun.
We’d love to see how your party turned out! Make sure you snap some shots and share with us on social media using the hashtag #MyPSParty.
When Easter hops around, we love curating special baskets for everyone in the family, especially if it means a cute theme and lots of goodies to complement it! As we got a head start on this year’s baskets, we thought why don’t we add a personal touch and build a basket – literally. The result is a cute woven basket, perfect for housing Easter goodies or to serve as a carrier for the Easter egg hunt. Find the how-to below!
Print the template on the paper color of your choice (we used Paper Bag). The template pages include the following components: the body of the basket, the basket handle, the basket rim (in 2 pieces) and weaving strips. Cut along the solid lines.
Fold the side panels of the body upwards.
Take 2 wide strips and tape the ends together, slightly overlapping.
Tape the end of the combined strip to the inside of one of the verticals on the basket structure and weave it through the rest of the verticals, folding the strips to follow the contour of each corner and securing at the corners with double-sided tape. Trim excess if needed.
Adhere 2 thin strips together and weave them through the structure, going under and over on opposite verticals from the first strip. Complete the weaving with one more wide row.
When you finish weaving, secure the loose ends at the top with double-sided tape.
Fold the two rim pieces in half lengthwise.
Fold the rim pieces in the shape of the basket and wrap them around the top, overlapping with one another and adhere with tape.
Add the handle with double-sided tape.
Step 10 (optional)
Decorate your basket with flowers, washi and more!
We’re always looking for new ways to make the tradition of decorating Easter eggs new, exciting and not to mention, cute! This year is no different, so we’ve rounded up 6 ways to elevate your egg decorating this Easter with a crafty twist!
Use gilding flakes to foil your eggs for a luxe effect.
At Paper Source, we’re dedicated to Doing Something Creative Every Day, and value the handmade touches we can bring into all of life’s celebrations. This month’s Meet the Maker is no different and has helped make crafting both easy and accessible for over 20 years!
American Crafts is a leading source of modern, innovative and colorful crafting supplies. With an emphasis on capturing everyday moments and favorite memories, they strive to inspire, create and beautify the simple things in life with easy-to-use tools and unique products. Check out our interview below to learn how they got their start and how they continue to change the game.
Describe the heritage and legacy of American Crafts
American Crafts was founded by Steve and Alma Mitchell nearly 25 years ago. Along with their sons, the Mitchells transitioned from creating cross stitch patterns to producing pens & craft supplies. The family business steadily grew into a well-known source for crafting supplies and a leader in the industry.
US President Gerald Ford (left) present Steve and Alma Mitchell, founders of American Crafts, with a national entrepreneurship award.
What sort of crafting trends are you currently seeing?
Currently, we are seeing a shift from monochromatic office organization to a cleaner, more retro look. Minimal prints, felt, textured papers, unique writing instruments, and pastel, 1970’s retro color palettes make up the bulk of this trend.
Rainbow organization is also on the up and up. Driven by a desire for the perfect #shelfie, crafters are turning to every color of the rainbow to organize, colorize, and beautify their craft spaces. Pens, paper, washi tape, folders, books all come in a full spectrum of bright, vivid colors.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen done with your tools?
Our customers are constantly surprising us with their unique uses of paper, pens, brushes, and tools. They practice layering techniques, new color combinations, and creative uses of multimedia tools and mediums. They create custom planners and journals, make perfect scrapbook pages, and turn blank canvases into beautiful works of art that constantly amaze us and keep us on our toes.
View the full American Crafts collection here and kickstart your creativity today!
With 6 more weeks of winter on the horizon (thanks Punxsutawney Phil), we’re looking for any excuse to bust out our chinaware and brunch. Seeing as Valentine’s Day is nearing closer and closer, we tapped our friends from Girl Meets Party to plan the ultimate Galentine’s Brunch, full of handmade touches and female friendship. Here’s Jen from Girl Meets Party!
Valentine’s Day is the ultimate paper holiday, and we’re celebrating it in a big way with a Galentine’s Day brunch featuring nearly all Paper Source items. Discover how to host the ultimate Galentine’s Day brunch below from the back drop to the menu to all the little details in between.
For the backdrop, we used six sheets of the Dandelion Puffs on Fuchsia Paper, which is perfect to double as gift wrap after your party. To minimize shadows and gaps, we taped the front of the paper. We framed the paper with white balloons and placed a love balloon in the center. The balloon runner was the cherry on top, which you can find the tutorial for on Girl Meets Party.
Our menu template is one of the favorites from Girl Meets Party. For Galentine’s Day, it was enchanced with a golden embossed love stamp at the top, which was created from the Love Script Stamp, Gold Embossing Powder and the Embossing Heat Tool. The menu was completely paleo and healthy for all guests. The paleo muffins were a huge hit among the ladies along with the other items on the menu. The Lenox Golden Waterfall plates served as the perfect backdrop for these delicate menus.
The confetti was the easiest to create and a perfect hand-made touch to add additional color to the table by using the Heart Punch and a combination of pink and red business cards from Paper Source’s Paper Bar. Each business card made 6 hearts. We created a combination of 12 pink and red hearts in each section of the table, which counted as in between plates. For the center of the table, there were approximately 36 hearts.
The Place Cards
The place cards were our favorite detail at the table primarily because of the pink embossed ‘love’ on the each card. The Silver Shimmer Place Cards always print extremely well with an inkjet printer. To create them, we set our paper size to place card size (3.5” x 5”) and added names in a sans serif font in the bottom right hand corner. Print one as a test to ensure there’s a enough space for the stamp. Then, we used the Love Stamp, Pink Embossing Powder and the Embossing Heat Tool to add some textured detail.
Other Fun Details
Love is Love plates were actually the inspiration behind the entire event – We spotted these at Williams Sonoma in Lincoln Park and fell in love. The champagne labels from Gardenia Labels were a crowd pleaser as were the Mini Heart Foil Gift Bags from Paper Source. Roses paired with lush greenery from a local grocery store are a go-to for brunches unless we’re working with a florist.
This brunch was such a lovely time to come together and celebrate love for one another, ourselves and the exciting goals that lie ahead for 2018. Get more inspiration below or visit Girl Meets Party for added ideas.
Jen is the creator of Girl Meets Party, a lifestyle site celebrating gifting, entertaining and decor. She’s been head over heels for hosting since she had a play set of table & chairs at age five. In her spare time, she loves to explore Chicago with her husband, try new restaurants and hit up the local farmers market.
This month’s Meet the Maker is a beloved card making organization, Good Paper. As a Fair Trade, high-quality card making organization, they provide employment opportunities in disadvantaged communities. Check out our interview with them below to learn more about their mission, their card making techniques, and how they are changing the lives of so many.
What is the mission of Good Paper?
Our mission is to restore the human spirit. We promote work opportunities in disadvantaged communities where the market has failed to create sustainable employment for our people.
How did Good Paper get started?
In 2008, our founder, Jimmy Quach, was looking for ways to create economic opportunity for disadvantaged communities. These individuals had gotten through elementary school at best, but Jimmy realized that they were quite skilled at making intricate handicrafts. He looked for a handicraft that would use this skill and connect them to the U.S. market, something that would provide a steady stream of employment and income. Greeting cards turned out to be a perfect fit! Americans love greeting cards and deeply appreciate artisan hand-craftsmanship.
How has this company changed the lives of women around the world?
A stable, fair-trade wage offered by Good Paper enabled our cardmakers to leave immense hardship and provided a way to feed their families, send their children to school, and save for the future. By learning a craft and creating high-quality cards, cardmakers have rediscovered their strength and dignity. They proudly sign the back of every card they create.
What goes into the card making process?
Each card starts with handmade paper. Recycled paper and all-natural plant fiber are pulped, hand-pulled as individual sheets of paper, and then dried. We have over thirty different paper colors that can go into our handcrafted cards. From there, the cardmakers assemble and sign all their cards.
What is the inspiration behind Good Paper’s card designs?
We have designers in the U.S. who design our cards. Our process begins with quirky and punny brainstorming sessions at our San Francisco main office. We invite our funny friends and brainstorm topics and good (and bad) puns over lunch. We call them “yes” sessions because no joke is too bad to throw out…just yet. From there, designers select which concepts they want to turn into cards and have a blast doing so. We find inspiration from popular culture, puns from everyday conversations and jokes, people and relationships, other illustrators and designers, and collaborating with our Good Paper team.
How many countries are Good Paper cards sold in?
How many cardmakers work for Good Paper?
We have a total of 161 cardmakers in the Philippines and Rwanda. The cardmakers have developed a remarkable community, grounded in strong friendships with fellow cardmakers. We have seen many of our cardmakers reach important milestones such as marriage, graduation, and having children.
Is everything done by hand?
Each sheet of paper goes through a hand-made papermaking process. Recycled paper and plant fiber are pulped, put into molds, then dried. Each card is individually hand-assembled by cutting and gluing all the pieces onto the cards.
How does your social mission set you apart?
We know that people love shopping for and discovering great greeting cards, so we work hard to deliver that. In addition, we provide an opportunity with every card purchased to create a much-needed job and forward good in this world!
To view the full collection of Good Paper cards at Paper Source, click here.
One of our favorite parts about Paper Source is the creativity our employees and customers have when it comes to DIY. There are so many brides and grooms who want to take their wedding planning into their own hands, literally. We offer a plethora of workshops and in-store advice for couples who want to add that extra special touch to their invitations, thank you cards, bridal showers, wedding decor, and more! Check out some of our favorites.
In an effort to make your DIY list easier (and more fun!), we offer a variety of wedding-themed workshops. These classes will provide you with DIY ideas, how-tos, pro tips and hands-on crafting time for you to complete your wedding projects. Bring a friend and cross another item off your list.
Two customers created DIY tickets for their wedding inspired by old train tickets! Check it out here.
“We own a public relations and design company, so we were really interested in making our wedding invitations. I designed them with inspiration from my old train tickets from London to Paris that I’ve been using as bookmarks.”
Invitation Suite 101
Want to learn how to create your invitation suite? Check out this handy blog post!
Pop the Question
If you’re looking for a creative way to ask your bridesmaids to well, be your bridesmaids, check out this clever idea!
There are so many ways to incorporate personal DIY touches into your wedding. Visit any Paper Source location for some tips from our experts, and check out #myPSwedding on Instagram for some other creative ideas!
We are so excited to start 2018 off with the launch of our new Paper Source wedding collection! This year, our overall theme and direction for our design aesthetic was “Timeless with a Twist.” The idea was getting back to the tradition of Paper Source with elevated fine printing, glorious artwork, and unique capabilities such as painted edges, letterpress printing and more.
Our new collection features 30 brand new Paper Source designed invitation suites, as well as an exclusive partnership with Paperless Post who offers hundreds of gorgeous invitation designs from premier designers like Rifle Paper Co., Oscar de la Renta, Kelly Wearstler, kate spade new york, Felix Doolittle, and Paperless Post themselves.
Favorite New Features
Vellum is a translucent paper that can be layered over colored paper or printed pieces to add a frosted look, providing an elevated accent to invitations. Vellum is available with Digital Printing and is sold as a loose sheet.
Blind Letterpress printing is when a colored ink is not applied, leaving an impression on the paper that gives it texture and elegance.
For centuries, master bookbinders gilded the edges of books with gold to give it a precious quality. We now offer painted edges to highlight or accent the card design.
Many of our new designs are also offered on A9 sizes!
Thermography on Shimmer Paper
Thermographic printing uses fine colored powders that are pressed and baked onto our select papers to create a unique, raised print. We now offer this print method on our super-refined, Italian crafted shimmer paper that gives a lavish feel and glamorous luster and allows your important wedding details to stand out.
Recipient Address Printing
Leave the addressing to us with our new offering of recipient address printing!
Greenery and Foliage
Crests and Monograms
Negative Space and Calligraphy
From luxurious foil to exquisite letterpress, find the look of your wedding dreams.
Incorporate elements of your wedding location into the design of your invitation.
We are so excited to now carry an exlusive collection of designer invitations. Some of our favorites are below!
Oscar de la Renta
kate spade new york
Every Paper Source WeddingShop has wedding concierges who will assist brides and grooms with the selection and customization of their wedding suites. The in-store specialists can assist with save the dates, rehearsal dinner and bridal shower invitations, table tents, envelope printing options, thank you notes, DIY options and more! To learn more about what goes into a wedding appointment, click here.
To view the complete Paper Source wedding collection, click here!