The Paper Tree

For exquisite gift wrapping, bookbinding and book covering, scrapbooking, paper crafts, origami, decoupage, iris folding, card making, gift tags and stationery.

The Paper Tree store online

Over the years, we have featured many of our retailers and most often they are brick and mortar stores that we love, many of which also have an on-line “shop”. This time, perhaps for our very first time, we are featuring a totally-on-line retailer: The Paper Tree of Newark, England. Read More

The Fat Finch

Roberta Beyer has loved birds since she can remember. Growing up in Las Cruces, New Mexico, “ my love of birds began as a child and I joined the Audubon Society when I was 8 years old.  I used to sit out on our back porch with a small tape recorder that I had and I would record the mockingbird that was in our big cottonwood tree.  My mom nicknamed me Bobolink (they called me Bobbie otherwise) because I loved birds so much.”  Read More

Featured designer: Karen Klein

Re-launching her candle line after a six year hiatus, (child raising) Karen Klein is delighted to be back at it!

Karen Klein had always had a passion for Italy; from fashion to wine, the food…. the Italian culture was alluring. It is out of that passion for Italy …and for candles, that her elegant and decorative candle line was born. Read More

Rossi 1931: The Gift of Christmas

“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!” 

 Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

For many of us–whether we choose to admit it or not–Christmas is about presents. Children eagerly wait in anticipation of Christmas morning. Far-sighted adults start stockpiling on-sale gifts early in the summer. The procrastinating multitudes flock to the mall in the week or days before Christmas. However, gift-giving did not become the central Christmas tradition it is today until the late 18th century. Stores began placing Christmas-themed ads in newspapers in 1820. Santa Claus, once and still known in some cultures as St. Nicholas, the increasingly popular bearer of gifts, started popping up in ads and stores 20 years later. . But despite the Christian roots of gift-giving, the practice ultimately steered Christmas closer to the somewhat secularized holiday it is today. By 1867, the Macy’s department store in New York City stayed open until midnight on Christmas Eve, allowing last-minute shoppers to make their purchases. Today, Christmas is the ultimate gift-giving bonanza.

Holiday gift giving began long before Christmas. The Romans would give gifts to one another on pagan festivals like Saturnalia, the winter solstice, and the Roman New Year. The tradition of gift giving became associated with Christmas because of the Three Kings’ offerings to the infant Jesus. The magi traveled to Bethlehem to present the gifts of frankincense, gold and myrrh.  Early on the Church discouraged the practice of gift giving because of its pagan associations. But by the Middle Ages the tradition had become so popular that it became a mainstay of the holiday season. It was during that time that St. Nicholas, a Christian Bishop in Turkey, known for his generosity, was giving to those less fortunate than he. He also gave to children of all backgrounds, simply because he felt they needed to savor their childhood, and have joyous times to remember. The most common gift given were homemade foods and sweets, oranges, a rare treat. It moved throughout the world very quickly, and before the 10th century it is known that nearly every country was participating in this exchange on St. Nicolas’ Eve.

Although the tradition of gift giving has a long Christmas history, those gifts being presented in colorful paper and tied up in curls of ribbon is a relatively new practice. While Christmas cards began to be sent in the mid-nineteenth century it wasn’t until many years later thatdressing up presents in Christmas finery caught on.

Early on gifts were wrapped in simple tissue paper or more sturdy brown paper. In the nineteenth century, gifts were sometimes presented in decorated cornucopias or paper baskets. The technology did not exist to mass produce a decorated, foldable, paper until the 1890’s, when developments in printing presses allowed colored ink to be printed fluidly on stiffer papers. Before the introduction of scotch tape in the 1930’s gifts were tied up with string and sealing wax.

Over the years the look of wrapping paper changed as well. The first wrapping paper was decorated in the ornate style of the Victorian era. Gilded flourishes of cherubs, birds, and flowers draped across sheets of popular wrapping papers. 

In the 30’s and 40’s, patterns became more stylized due to the popularity of Art Deco.

Decorations moved away from nature to symbols we commonly associate with Christmas today

collage

Popular patterns included ice skaters, snowflakes, Christmas trees, and candles. It was during these decades that Rossi’s decorative paper was born, inspired by traditional Florentine designs of the Renaissance. Later on they included contemporary alternatives

featuring little details that add up to big impact: small hits of brilliant gold and silver metallic ink, finely detailed and multi-layered illustrations, delicate flourishes and stunning patterns and colors.

Aficionados rejoice! Next year’s Christmas papers are a combination of two techniques; letterpress and a heated application of gold, producing a very special outcome. 

 

We here at Rossi are truly blessed to be able to do what we love and share our products with you. Thank you. Have a joyous Holiday season.

 

“We wish you light snows and twinkling lights. A home alive with cookie smells. A child to play with, a dog to pet and the hope of answered prayers.”

 

So glad you asked…

There are thousands of thoughts lying within us that we do not know until we take up the pen to write. As Oscar Wilde said in that famous play, The Importance of Being Earnest ‘I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read on the train’

So, “why should I keep a journal?” you ask.

~Your children and grandchildren will want to read it. Perhaps that’s hard to believe right now for maybe your life seems quite ordinary and of little interest to anyone else. But, wouldn’t you be thrilled to find a journal written by your great grandfather about life in the 1800’s or your grandmothers take on her new purchase, the first washing machine? Such a peek at days gone by is fascinating. And so it is with you; when your grandkids or great grandkids are talking to people via hologram, they are going to be absolutely fascinated by your excitement of those ancient things like the I- Phone and Microwave oven. Share your thoughts and emotions of where you were when the World Trade Center was attacked or your experience driving your first hybrid car…… any and all pertinent events. While you may think that you’ll be able to remember everything clearly in the future, you won’t. It is said that by age 80, you will only remember the faintest outlines of the big occurrences in your life. Your journals will leave a legacy for your family.

~It can make sense of issues. After struggling with a choice and thinking long and hard about it, make a decision and then write down how and why you came to that decision. A journal can aid you in these dilemmas.  In time, if you start doubting the choice, you can look back, remind yourself of why you made that decision in the first place, and feel reassured.

It is a perfect tool to use if you find yourself in a funk and can’t seem to get out of it; look back through your journal to find the times when you were happiest.  Old journal entries can help you rediscover the kind of changes you need to make to get your life back on track….or simply to realize what a fool you were in your 20’s. Finally, simply writing about your feelings and frustrations helps you focus on what’s really going on in your life and in your head, so that you can come up with a solution to your problems.

~Journaling grants you immortality. Think of the billions of people who have and will perish from the earth without leaving a trace of themselves behind. They vanish into the ether, completely forgotten in the annals of history. A journal helps make you immortal. It is a tangible piece of evidence to leave behind that you were here! And who knows? Maybe the whole world might be interested in your musings someday. How many men were ignored in their lifetime, only to be celebrated after their death?

~It’s empowering.Philosopher and psychologist William James once said, “If you can change your mind, you can change your life” — and journal-writing can help you do just that. Writing about the ups and downs of your daily life can help you to get perspective on your experiences and find lessons in them. Keeping a journal is a constant and clear way to remind yourself that YOU — and nobody else — are the author of your own life story.

Whether you use your journal as some of us do, to simply keep grocery lists or your “to-do “list, or as a therapeutic catharsis, or to have the printed word to reflect over your past, it is for certain that journaling has become very popular. The most telling statistic on the popularity of journaling comes from notebook/journal manufacturers, who estimate that more than five million blank books are sold each year.

 

“I have all my life regretted that I did not keep a regular [journal]. I have myself lost recollection of much that was interesting and I have deprived my family and the public of some curious information by not carrying this resolution into effect.” Sunday, 20 November 1825,Sir Walter Scott

 

A Brief History of the Journal

What is a diary as a rule? A document useful to the person who keeps it. Dull to the contemporary who reads it and invaluable to the student, centuries afterwards, who treasures it.” 

Sir Walter Scott.

letterpress notebooks

Journaling is not a modern phenomenon; there are recordings traced back to 55AD China. During the Renaissance period, the Western world began journaling regularly and the diary, began to have some literary value as the importance of the individual began to come to the fore. Ladies of the court in tenth century Japan used pillow books to record their dreams and thoughts with images and poetry. Throughout history, travel logs were also used as journals in both the Eastern and Western worlds. They were used to record details of places, people, navigational insights, botanical and other information. Since then it has often been used by the historian, not only as a supply of factual information, but as a picture of the daily life and personality of its writer.

The most poignant records of recent years was the wartime diary of Anne Frank. Broadly translated, it is one of the most widely read pieces of literature in history. It was begun when Anne was 13, just before she and her family went into hiding from the Nazis in a small apartment annex in the city of Amsterdam, and ended shortly after her 15th birthday, when the Nazis raided their hideout. After the war, her father, Otto, the only survivor in the family, decided to publish his daughter’s heart-rending diary. 

Distinguished diaries have also come from literary figures, such as Virginia Woolf and Emerson, religious leaders like Pope John XXIII, statesmen: George Washington, Winston Churchill and Thomas Jefferson, and a host of nonpublic figures whose personal dramas have become historical classics. But diaries should not be seen solely as literature; as Henry David Thoreau once said, ”the journal is a record of experience and growth, not a preserve of things well done or said.” In studying the lives of great men, one might notice a common trait: they were all consistent journal writers. If it weren’t for their journals, we probably wouldn’t know much about their great lives and deeds.

In the 1960’s the idea of journaling really came into play, when an American psychotherapist, best known for his development of the Intensive Journal Method, began offering workshops and classes in a method  using reflective writing as therapy with the ultimate goal of psychological healing. It is believed that by recording and describing the significant issues in one’s life, one can better understand these issues and eventually diagnose problems that stem from them. Today that method has been taught to over 250,000 people.

Journal therapy has been used effectively for grief and loss; coping with life-threatening or chronic illness, repairing troubled marriages and family relationships; increasing communication skills; developing healthier self-esteem; getting a better perspective on life; and clarifying life goals.

Still, people journal for a variety of reasons; to record memories, to improve their writing, to develop self-discipline or help change bad habits, to reach new levels of self-discovery.  The reasons are endless, but overwhelmingly journaling gives people a space to develop their thoughts. The diary is, first and foremost, a psychological tool, an instrument for self-understanding. Those who recognize it as such look upon their journals as companions and confidants. Like a good therapist, the diary is the perfect listener.

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For information about the beautiful Italian journals available through Rossi 1931, visit www.rossi1931.com

Italian Stationery Wins Over Your Heart

Valentine’s Day is traditionally known as the day of love, often expressed by handmade paper Valentines and homemade treats of all sorts.  Rossi embraces this tradition, in fact, it’s practically the company credo and you’ll see it proclaimed numerous times onrossi love the Rossi website.  It’s true: the Rossi stationery products are made with creativity and tradition—and a big dose of love!

With less than a week to go to the Big Day, share your love and appreciation with these inspirational Valentine ideas crafted with Rossi products.

All Heart: A new pattern from the 2013 Letterpress Collection
Red is for Roses:  A new pattern from the 2013 Letterpress Collection. (also available in tan)

Kris Stewart, owner of Scroll Book Arts, loves using the new letterpress papers
for her albums and books.  She explains: “Never having worked with letterpress before, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it! Now it’s officially my favorite Rossi paper to work with. Letterpress has such a nice texture to it. If you haven’t felt letterpress before, the printing process leaves an indentation so you not only see the printing, you feel
it. This paper is a dream and I thoroughly enjoyed crafting these albums.”

Bookbinder Kris Stewart will win over your heart with this lovely album crafted with Letterpress paper
Bookbinder Kris Stewart will win over your heart with this lovely album crafted with Letterpress paper
The Letterpress texture works well for albums and books
All Heart:  the red bookcloth sets off the tan letterpress paper and the texture works particularly well for albums and books

Rossi decorative sheets are not only great for albums, but work well with any product branding. Juliette Goggin from the UK packages her soap line, jewelry and repurposed goods with Rossi papers.

Juliette Goggin’s handmade treasures look extra special when packaged with beautiful paper

For more information about Juliette Goggin, please visit: http://www.juliettegoggin.co.uk/

Kris Stewart’s books can be found on her Etsy store, Scroll.

For Rossi products, see our list of US Retailers.

To see a video of the Rossi1931 collection, click here. For more information about Rossi1931, please visit http://rossi1931.com/

WELOVE

Featured Designer: Scroll Book Arts

It’s always fascinating to learn about entrepreneurs who have turned their passion into thriving businesses. It’s even more interesting when you discover that Rossi decorative papers have played an important role in their businesses!

That’s the case for Kris Stewart, a talented bookbinder from the Pacific Northwest who has been designing exquisite books and albums for the past 14 years. Last year, she designed two of her best-selling albums using Rossi decorative papers: a beautiful blue peacock feather motif with shimmering gold accents and a weathered gold brocade on a white background.

Happily ever after: a popular Rossi sheet used for a wedding album Happily ever after: a popular Rossi sheet used for a wedding album

Kris describes herself as a “maker” and a “designer.”   She says, “When I was really young it was construction paper with tape and staples (way too much tape and way too many staples!)  Then it was coloring books filled with abstract patterns just begging for the right combination of crayons. Next it was grand architectural plans for houses I wanted to live in when I grew up, complete with furniture arrangements and landscaping.”

A brilliant Florentine pattern, traditional and modern

“Now that I’m an adult, I may not live in any of those houses I designed as a child, but I am still a maker and a designer, happily working at the intersection of beauty and function.  Bookmaking  became a passion when I happened onto a class 14 years ago. I researched new techniques and tried new ideas and now specialize in paper covered albums and scrap books which I sell through my Etsy shop, Scroll.

Kris says she is very fortunate to work with the world’s most beautiful papers every day: “How lucky I am!  I get the opportunity to work with papers from around the world, including Italian-made Rossi  Papers.  They have become some of my best sellers!  One of my favorite things is to go to the paper store and pull out one big drawer after another, looking at and feeling each paper.”

Kris says that the design process for an album’s cover starts with choosing the decorative paper.  She states: “That seems like it would be the easy part, but really, there are too many choices!   So much beauty, so little time.”

Kris is a master at combining materials like this sand-colored binding paired with a Rossi seashells paper.

Her plans for the 2013 line of custom wedding and baby albums are coming along nicely, and lovely Rossi papers will once again be represented.  The new albums will debut in mid-January and she looks forward to another exciting year of bringing smiles to customers’ faces.

Kris Stewart’s books can be found on her Etsy store, Scroll.  For more information, please visit Scrollbookarts.com

To see a video of the Rossi1931 collection, click here.

For more information about Rossi1931, please visit http://rossi1931.com/

 

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