June 11, 2007

rock, PAPER, scissors

As I'm sure many artist crafter (and other) folks are, I'm enamored with paper. Big time. Beautiful cards and journals make me drool. Show me a collage and my knees go weak.

But of course the environmentally-concerned citizen/treelover in me sits on my other shoulder and counters my paper-consuming desires (when those desires aren't for recycled/reused/found paper goods - many of the above folks do use recycled/reused/found paper.)

The answer for me is: to fight whenever possible for chlorine-free, recycled paper products and in my own paper consumption (even for notetaking, letterwriting, printing on my home printer), to use found/scrap/recycled/reused papers. There is a LOT of paper floating around out there.

I sometimes go to SCRAP in San Francisco, and they have just about any kind of paper you could want, donated from places that for some reason aren't using the stuff. They have three hole punched paper that is perfect for taking notes in my classes. They have envelopes of ALL shapes and sizes (including padded ones for mailing). Posterboard. Colored paper. Printer paper. Sometimes even watercolor paper and card stock. Oh, and it costs next to nothing at SCRAP. The (sometimes cranky, but generally good egg) old French lady looks in your basket of wares and determines a price (my basket full of paper and other odds and ends is usually 5-12 dollars.)

book1_2 book1_3

I mentioned on my blog this simple journal I made from reused papers (pics above and below). I was inspired by lovelydesign and five and a half. Both make beautiful journals from reused, recycled, found paper. Please see five and a half's excellent tutorial on this. It's super easy and you can make great gifts from old papers for yourself and friends.


You might be inclined to recycle paper you've used that has scribbles/notes on it. But I think it's fun to intersperse blank pages in these journals with pages with your marks on them. One thing I love about lovelydesign journals is that Sharilyn puts old stamps and things in the envelopes in her journals. They are little gifts/surprises and they make the journal more personal and interesting. (And they remind me of Griffin and Sabine.)

If you don't have a place like SCRAP near you, you can probably find unwanted paper at big printers (I visited one that recycles TONS of paper), schools, any office (perhaps even the one you work at), and I bet at lots of other places as well. And see Gwen's recent post where she mentioned several great places to find used paper/collaging materials.

Happy green journal-creating and collaging to you!


tia said...

i love love love this post. i also make paper products out of recycled materials. you're right, theres so much perfectly functional paper scraps floating around out there. i wish more people would put it to good use.

Anonymous said...

Another great post! Thanks.
Check out http://www.pocketmod.com/
It's a way to fold a piece of paper (A4 or letter format) already printed on one side, and to turn it into a blank little booklet.
They make you print template pages (calendar, todo list, etc) to turn the booklet into an organizer but what is really useful to me is just the folding method.
In my office most people print on only one side of the paper and throw away loads of 1/2 blank paper that could be turned into neat little booklets.


tara said...

My office gets rid of tons of paper also! I often print on just one side, only to find out it's a "draft" and needs to be redone (on good paper again!) We have recycling, and I make sure all my paper goes there...but before it does: I dig through it, find the good stuff (graph paper, envelopes, stuff with handwriting)and bind books with it (we have a spiral binder at work)...I've actually been thinking of offering to send anyone who's interested some paper or spiral bound notebooks, since I have more than I can use.
If you're interested: email me (staralee18ATyahooDOTcom)!

ms. pea said...

shash, this post makes me so happy! i love the tutorial, i think journals and notebooks will be my gifts of choice for a while...

tracy said...

beautiful post shash! thanks!

Ali said...

Great post - thanks you for inspiring me once again.

gracia said...

Full of papery goodness you are, Shash.

see you, g