Thursday, August 28, 2014

Paper Jewelry Cards by Jewelry Greetings

For those who enjoy sending special cards to friends and family and for admirers of paper jewelry, I have something unique to introduce today. Christiane and Oliver Hampel contacted me to see if I might like to review their new - and I mean brand new! - line of keepsake Jewelry Greetings.

jewelry-greetings-paper-rings

I looked forward to seeing the cards in person and was not disappointed... they are beautiful quality - felt-textured Strathmore Grandee paper with gold lettering and blank interior for personalization. Each card features a sturdy, punch-out ring that is easily assembled and fun to wear - just right to send to a friend as a birthday greeting, thank you, or just because.

jewelry-greetings-cards

The contemporary designs include Dancing Hearts, Bunchberry, Cherry Blossoms, Sunflower, Cattleya Orchid, and Trillium Lily. Of course the rings are not meant for everyday use, but will hold up quite well if worn occasionally.

Jewelry-Greetings-Assembly

The ring is detached from the card front along perforated lines and assembled as shown on the included instruction card.

Jewelry-Greetings-Assembly

Oliver, a graphic designer, and Christiane, a goldsmith, were born in Germany where they studied design and jewelry making; they now reside in Naples, Florida.

jewelry-greetings-cherry-blossoms-ring

Looking for a novel way to promote Christiane's jewelry line, she and Oliver collaborated on the nature-inspired card set. After receiving positive feedback from friends and family, they were encouraged to release the creative cards as a collection in its own right.

jewelry-greetings-instructions

Visit Jewelry Greetings which is also on Facebook. A Kickstarter campaign is underway too.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Woven Paper Baskets - Dorothy McGuinness

While perusing the list of artists whose work will be seen in the upcoming Pulp Culture: Paper is the Medium exhibit at the Morris Museum in Morristown, New Jersey, I was stopped in my tracks by remarkable contemporary baskets woven by Dorothy McGuinness of Washington state.

woven-paper-basket-double
Double

Nearly thirty years ago, Dorothy took a basket weaving class in Seattle and was hooked... that class led to nearly 200 more. She has studied with American Indian artists, traditional American basket makers, and with Japanese bamboo basket maker Jiro Yonezawa.

woven-paper-basket-abundance
Abundance

What is especially unusual about Dorothy's baskets is her material of choice.

woven-paper-basket-rippled-green
Rippled Green

Realizing she wasn't interested in taking the time to learn to properly prepare bamboo, and after attending a seminar on weaving with paper, watercolor paper became her medium. Dorothy now works with it exclusively.

woven-paper-basket-marine-concertina
Marine Concertina

She relies on a pasta maker to cut paper sheets into 1/8 inch (3mm) strips and paints them with acrylics. 

woven-paper-basket-carnival
Carnival

Dorothy began using paper to do diagonal twills of Japanese basketry.

woven-paper-basket-mushroom-box
Mushroom Box

She says: I’ve explored coiling, twining, plaiting, mad weave, rib style baskets and everything in between. But diagonal twills are what I enjoy working with the best. 

woven-paper-basket-rusty
 Rusty

Those of us who quill with one narrow paper strip at a time will marvel at these in-progress shots of Dorothy's Vault basket  - just look at the complexity of the process!

woven-paper-basket-vault-progress

woven-paper-basket-vault-progress

She continually experiments with color, pattern, and form to achieve a variety of sculptural shapes. A research scientist, Dorothy enjoys incorporating her love of math and geometry into the art. 

woven-paper-basket-out-burst
Out Burst

I'm looking forward to seeing her work in person next month... Out Burst and Electric Blue are just two of several baskets made by Dorothy that will be in the show. The exhibit dates are September 21 - December 7 and it will feature the work of nearly fifty artists. I'm pleased that a few pieces of my paper jewelry are included too - more about them in a future post. 

woven-paper-basket-electric-blue
Electric Blue

See many more examples of Dorothy's baskets on her website and Flickr.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Mixed Media Collages - Baye Hunter

Baye Hunter's distinctive collages caught my eye... they are featured in a show titled Bikes, Butterflies & Birds through September 1 at Rectory Gallery on Ward's Island, just offshore from Toronto, Canada. Baye works with Japanese paper, hand-printed tissues, and magazine pages.

Blue-Jay-Collage

The subject matter is inspired by the Toronto Islands where she lives. I was interested to learn that the islands are a popular tourist destination and the largest car-free urban community in North America... needless to say, bicycling is common there.

bike-collage

Not only does Baye bike in the Toronto vicinity, but she has ridden extensively in Europe, Asia, and western Canada. She has studied art and is a photographer, watercolor artist, ESL teacher, and web designer - a busy person with varied interests that inform her art.

monarch-collage

To create a collage, Baye first draws an image, then chooses papers collected over time that correlate with the subject matter and colors she has in mind.

birch-tree-winter-collage

birch-trees-collage 
These are combined with hand-printed tissue paper onto which she stamps patterns and adds a color wash. She applies the papers to a backing paper which is then cut or torn into pieces. Each piece is adhered to the drawn image, and lastly, a color-softening paint wash is applied.

cardinal-collage

 See more of Baye's art on her website.

owl-collage


Monday, August 18, 2014

The Kirigami Project by Omiyage

If you're on the lookout for a relaxing papercraft to try, you might enjoy a visit to the Omiyage blog where you can catch up with The Kirigami Project. Since the first of the year, Marisa Edghill, co-owner of Omiyage, a supplier of crafty paper goods - origami paper, washi tape, and more - has been sharing a free kirigami pattern each week.

kirigami-examples

Perhaps you've heard the term kirigami and wondered how it differs from origami... while origami is folding paper, kirigami is folding and cutting. Have you ever made a paper snowflake? Congratulations, you've already entered the fun world of kirigami!


kirigami-diagrams

Thin paper is best - origami paper works well, as does tissue paper. Heavy paper leads to bulky folds and layers that shift when you try to cut... whoops, there goes the perfect symmetry. I suggest starting with this Omiyage post, where you can scroll down to see diagrams of 4, 5, and 6-fold processes, and also have a look at this very short video.

kirigami

Marisa's designs are impressive in that quite a few resemble specific items, not just random, pretty shapes... abstract reasoning is obviously one of her strong suits! She has devised patterns from camellias to campfires and even kissing birds on top of birdhouses, just to name a few.

kirigami-birds-birdhouses

The more cuts that are made, the lacier the result, but Marissa proves that even very simple designs can be appealing. I'm a fan of these bold, graphic arrows.

kirigami-arrows

I asked Marisa for ideas on what to do with kirigami... aside from enjoying the in-the-moment cutting process, of course. She answered that the shapes can be stacked to use as gift adornments or strung as garlands. You can even frame your favorites.

kirigami-gift-bows

Here Marisa had the idea to transform a batch of kirigami shapes into colorful envelopes by photocopying them.

kirigami-envelopes-process

kirigami-decorated-envelopes

Visit the Omiyage blog to try out a new kirigami design each week and then, if you like, share the fruits of your labor with the hashtag #thekirigamiproject via social media.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Cut Paper Illustrations - Sarah Trumbauer

Another paper cutter, you ask? Indeed, I say! Sarah Trumbauer brings her unique touch to original and highly detailed cut paper designs. Leaves, flowers, art nouveau, children's stories and fairy tales... all are fair game.
Good-Things-Paper-Cutting

There's nothing like a gorgeous close-up to show the intricacy of a paper cutting... Sarah is also an avid photographer.

paper-cutting-detail

Each design begins with a drawing that she cuts by hand...

rough-drawing-papercut-cosmos

...and when complete, is enhanced with a graduated color backing paper. I was interested to learn she designs and prints the papers in her home studio - the very best way to obtain the desired effect.

Cosmos-Paper-Cutting

Sarah often turns her work into wearable art. These elegant, nature-inspired necklaces feature tiny (just 1.25 inches!) hand cut designs that float between two micro-thin layers of glass...

Cut-Paper-Nature-Pendants

...while miniature versions of cut paper scenes are printed, placed in oval pendants, and fitted with beveled glass.

Papercut-Necklaces

There isn't anything especially fancy about Sarah's tools... she relies on a Martha Stewart craft knife (watch her cut some impressively tiny stars in this very quick video) and changes the blade after each papercut inchie.

papercutting-detail

What brought about your interest in this art?

My mom‘s family is Pennsylvania Dutch and she introduced me to scherenschnitte when I was growing up. In college (Sarah is a graduate of Corcoran College of Art + Design in Washington, D.C.) I focused mainly on drawing and painting, but a few years later I started using it as another tool for my illustrations, and I fell head-over-heels in love. It went from being a hobby to something I've been doing full-time for about 3 years now.  

layered-paper-cutting

What do you enjoy most about the cutting process? 

I love that with papercutting, I am creating something beautiful and meaningful using only an x-acto knife and a simple piece of paper. Watching the illustration develop from an intangible idea to a finished papercut, one cut at a time, really captivates me.

papercut-peace-ornament

I'm already looking forward to Sarah's winter/holiday designs. Recently she shared an ornament sneak-peek on Instagram and in the past has created beautiful cards.

papercut-snowflakes

Due to a sudden deluge of orders this past weekend, Sarah regrets she is not able to accept requests for original designs at the moment. They will be offered again in several weeks, but meanwhile see many alternatives in her shop or via Facebook.

fern-papercutting


Monday, August 11, 2014

Paper Connection International - Specialty Handmade Paper Giveaway

 Congratulations to the winner - Karen!

If you haven't heard of Paper Connection International, you're in for a treat. Since 1995, owner Lauren Pearlman Sugita has been importing handmade fine art and specialty papers from all over the world, notably Japan, India, Nepal, Latin America, China, and Korea, to the PCI studio and warehouse in Providence, Rhode Island.

Handmade-Patterned-Papers

PCI is known for its staff that offers decades of expertise in the world of paper along with dependable customer service. Technical assistance is provided to manufacturers, retailers, museum curators, bookbinders, conservators, artists, and designers.
 mulberry-paper

Lauren frequently lectures and hosts workshops about the tradition of hand-making high quality paper, helping to ensure that the information is maintained by generations of artists and crafts in the East and West.

Japanese-patterned-paper

In addition to an incredible array of papers, browse PCI online to discover unique stationery, washi postcards, deckle-edge business cards, acid-free blank journals and scrapbooks, coasters, kites, masks, lampshades, party accessories, boxes, gift wrap, acid-free starch glue, marbled papers...

Marbled Paper

... and mizuhiki cord (below) which is made from tightly wound and starched rice paper. Originally it was made to tie up the hair of samurai warriors, but now is shaped into beautiful knots that can be used to decorate cards and gifts.

mizuhiki-cord 

Paper Connection International has offered to send a selection of nine Japanese paper sheets ($30 value) to one U.S. resident who leaves a comment on this post. The superior papers would be ideal for bookbinding, card making, and box making, just to name a few ideas.  

handmade-papers

The shipment of rolled papers will include:
3 sheets of Laurelai Designs designed in-house by Paper Connection International, LLC
1 vintage yuzen paper or chiyogami, a Kimono pattern from Japan
5 vintage Japanese papers from Echizen, Japan; pastel-colored textured washi

Several of the echizens and crepe echizens are not featured in PCI's catalog, so the winner will be receiving something unique from their vintage collection.  

Jeri Kim Lowe, Lauren's assistant, describes the papers: 

giveaway-description

From left to right, the lighter colored papers - mint, yellow and lilac - are textured and would be ideal for all sorts of paper craft. They have crevices running through them and a crepe paper-like texture. They are often used for flower making. The three patterned papers - green with pink vine, gray with yellow flowers, and blue bubbles - are PCI Laurelei Designs, silk-screened patterns on acid-free, recycled cotton paper. The yellow echizen is a vintage paper with a pretty sheen that features a small Japanese calligraphy repeated pattern. The pink butterfly paper is a full sheet of vintage Japanese yuzen. Lastly, the peachy-pink echizen  is a bit metallic and has a pearlized sheen - quite nice and elegant! 

Leave a comment as your entry below. One winner with a U.S. mailing address will be selected at random on Monday, August 18 and announced here as soon as she/he has been contacted.

Paper Connection International has a blog and is on Facebook and Twitter


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