Although autumn technically starts on September 22nd, autumn colours don't make an appearance here in southern Ontario until mid-to-late October. When the trees show us that we're in the season of fruition, it's quite natural to look back and become nostalgic.
Does the autumn make you feel crafty? Maybe it's the idea of knitwear, Thanksgiving, Halloween and even the lead up to the Christmas holidays that makes us get creative and want to pull out some paper and scissors.
If you prefer to create your own designs, you can use a quality blank sheet and stamps. Either use coloured ink or colour in images with pencils, markers or watercolours. Customized papers like these make great wrapping paper or you can use them to make your own gift bags. Just add tissue and a pretty ribbon and you're set!
As a gift for yourself, use paper to cover a book or storage box. Or, insert a little whimsy into your day by lining a drawer, shelf or inside cupboard with a beautiful decorative paper to spark some joy. Use it to line or cover a tin or jar and make yourself a pen, brush, or cutlery holder - or apply the same technique to revitalize an old vase.
Since papers are lightweight, inexpensive and versatile, you can switch them up for different seasons and holidays, easily giving your space a fresh, new and festive look.
For Thanksgiving and Halloween, consider making paper leaves or other cutouts to hang. For example, bats and crows can be dangled from string in doorways, windows or from branches. Or cutout some cats, a full moon, pumpkins, etc. and tape them to your window to appear in the evening against the interior glow of light inside.
You can also use paper and a good pair of scissors to fashion yourself a Halloween costume, such as a calendar (we did this one year - affix pages to a cardboard box with head and arm-holes, and dangle a pencil from a string). Or create paper accessories, such as a mask, crown, fan, or wand-topper.
Well, October is upon us, and we're off to the library! This month is Canadian Library Month; a time to consider the impact our libraries have on our communities.
Did you enjoy Brian Dettmer's book art? Does paper-based art inspire you? If so, you'll want to check us out next week, when we'll have fun with paper crafts!
Until then, we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!
September 30th this year, us Canadians have a brand new statutory holiday - the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This, together with Yom Kippur (also known as The Day of Atonement) this month made us reflect upon the topic of forgiveness.
The Injured Party
It's no picnic in the park to be wronged by another. Worse yet is the amplification of any pain we felt at the time by replaying a narrative about it in our head. This evokes any number of negative emotions and can put us in quite a state.
Many conflate forgiveness with condoning an act. However, forgiveness is about accepting that something unpleasant has happened, not that it was okay. Rather, it's about recognizing that you'll be okay, whatever happens. It's a release from the intense energy that can sometimes be put into resisting reality.
Forgiveness benefits you more than anyone else. You release yourself from the torment of hoping that the past was different.
It's in the past. So we let it go and free ourselves by not tainting our present and future.
🧡 Every Child Matters. Artist Jacqueline Shaver creates handmade orange poppy pins which are meant "to help remember and honour the lives of precious First Nations Children. Children that were forcibly removed from their families, homes and communities and sent to 'school'... To help support individuals affected by this tragedy, all profits from the poppies will be donated to the Indian Residential School Survivors Society."
🧡 The Niagara Regional Native Center (NRNC) provides human services, social, cultural, recreational and educational programs to all Native people in St Catharines, Niagara Falls, Welland, Thorold, Beamsville and Grimsby.
🧡 The Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre has produced a series of video projects to help educate and entertain those searching for knowledge and understanding. FENFC-TV's Indigenous Perspectives docuseries highlights Indigenous history in Niagara.
🧡 The Niagara Chapter – Native Women Inc. offers a friendly connecting place and supports Native/Indigenous women and their families through access to culturally relevant services and programs.
🧡 The Niagara Region Metis Council is a community council within the Metis Nation of Ontario. Their mission is to unite the Métis people and to promote the historical values, culture, language, and traditions of the Métis Nation.
Forgiveness and apologies can be tricky, but it's something we're all meant to learn. We hope we've inspired you to reflect on the relationships in your life and wish you much friendship, harmony and peace.
Nature's a rich source of inspiration. It's ever-changing, growing, morphing, etc. There's always something showing us a new perspective, if we only stop for a moment and observe. Tomorrow - Wednesday, September 22nd - is the autumnal equinox, the first day of fall. As the hours of daylight grow fewer, several plants form seed pods and fade.
- Heirloom Garden Floral Card ~ Sending Love & Hugs - Blank Inside
- Heirloom Wild Aster & Garden Floral 2-Sided Gift Wrap
- Heirloom Pressed Floral Lay Flat Notebook
- Cavallini 2022 Diary ~ Herbarium Weekly Planner
Creating a record of this season's plant material, or a garden-themed wall hanging is a wonderful way to restore your energy and connect with nature. Appreciating the abundance at this time of year as a great thing to do in September.
Next week, we'll discuss our brand new national holiday and forgiveness. Until then, we hope you find some time to enjoy this season's flora and fauna!
We know washi's doing... she's taping photos and momentos into her scrapbook!
Washi tape is a wonderful plant-based tape that comes in a wide variety of colours and printed designs. Since it doesn't leave a residue, you can remove it without damaging the material to which it's adhered. Anyone who's spent time trying to remove gummy adhesive from glass will appreciate this feature!
In the kitchen, washi is sometimes used on glasses to identify one person's glass from another. They're also useful on jars and containers since you can write on them, turning them into versatile labels.
Creatives love washi for scrapbooking and creating collages. Your options are only limited by your imagination!
A fun new collection of transparent masking tape for decorating virtually anything you wish to decorate. Decorate your planner, journal, letters, gift wrapping, surfaces, frames, bottles, and all of your favourite things. Made in Japan.
Another place washi comes in handy is when adhering plant materials into your own herbarium. Join us next week when we'll talk about using inspiration from the outdoors in a creative way.
At Figg Street Co., we're getting ready for Thanksgiving. One way we get into the spirit is by counting our blessings. There's much to be grateful for: good health, kind friends, waking up to beautiful sunrises and watching the sun set, and then, the starlight at night. Boxes of new inventory to display, being surrounded by beautiful stationery and inks, just to name a few things. Of course, we're also grateful to all of you who visit the shop and make purchases through our website - thank you!
- Rifle Paper Co. Thank You Boxed Notecards
- Amalfi Folded Notecards with Envelopes
- Katie Leamon Lux Sprig Boxed Notecards
- G.Lalo Cartes Bordées
The Thanksgiving holiday is a great excuse to both thank others and decorate. Holidays bring out creative ideas to celebrate. (For those of you celebrating, Happy Rosh Hashanah!)
In the spirit of creativity, we'll be discussing and showing you many ways to use washi tape next week. Join us then!
Have you ever spent a day running from one task to another, rushing through something to get to something else, only to wonder in the evening where all your time went? Many of us spend our time at odds with our core values. Doing so on repeat leaves us feeling stressed, overwhelmed and unsatisfied.
Ryder Carroll understood this when he created the Bullet Journal Method (also known as "BuJo") as a tool to help him manage Attention Deficit Disorder.
He describes the bullet journal as "an analog system I devised to help you track the past, organize the present, and plan for the future". He discovered that his method of jotting down tasks, events, and notes kept him focused. It wasn't until a few years ago that he realized others could benefit from this, as well.
Two key aspects that make bullet journaling so effective are flexibility and speed. It's flexible enough to handle a variety of data. It's also flexible in regard to the style you wish to use: anything from minimalist to highly decorative. The speed of the system is also key because simplicity and ease keeps you from putting it off.
Collections are groupings of related tasks (e.g. a shopping list or a mood tracker). You create a title and note the page in the index.
Migration is a key tenet of bullet journaling. As Ryder Carroll says, doing so, "can mean the difference between being busy and being productive". Once you reach the end of the month, you review your bullets. Anything completed is checked off, anything no longer relevant gets crossed out, and anything that is still important and needs to get done is migrated forward to the new month (or future log, if it extends past the next month). Arrows are used to denote migrated tasks. This step causes you to pause and reflect on your priorities.
The flexible nature of bullet journaling allows you to start at any time of the year. Usually, a dot grid format notebook is used, which allows for easy vertical and horizontal display of information.
Well, what do you think? Is bullet journaling something you'd like to try (maybe for the new school year)? Let us know!
We wish all of you a Happy Labour Day & long weekend!
After experiencing lockdown, many of us are itching for a vacation. If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go? Some of us dream and write about our ideal trips in personal journals. Or create scrapbooks filled with beautiful images that create a mood or hold pictures of specific iconic destinations. Others forgo the dreaming or planning and are already out there, jetting off to the Rockies, the Maritimes or beautiful Montreal.
However, many of us, for one reason or another, won't be traveling this month. Or, we won't be traveling to the parts of the world we really wish we could go. Some of us might feel a desire to escape, if only mentally. This is when a great travel documentary series may fit the bill. You can make yourself the beverage of your choice, get comfortable, and curl up to visit anyplace you like. No lineups or passport required.
In addition to providing you with an immediate feeling of getting away, these selections can also serve as inspiration and research, if you are about to take a trip in your near future.
- Traveler's Notebook Passport Leather Cover Brown
- Traveler's Notebook Passport Size Refill Washable Paper
- Traveler's Notebook Passport Size Refill Accordion Fold Paper
- 010 Traveler's Notebook Double-Sided Sticker
Whether you travel by plane, car, armchair or in your mind as your write out your travel plans and dreams, we wish you a happy escape. Journals are flexible in that they can be a place where we go to explore our imagination, and they can also be a great productivity tool for daily life. Next week we'll address bullet journaling, a personal organization method that's been growing in popularity.
Does the idea of laying out a blanket on the grass and reading a good book appeal to you? Maybe you have a hammock or a reclining chair on a terrace that you prefer. Whether under a shade tree, patio umbrella, out in the sun or inside, summertime is a great time to escape into a thick tome.
Novels are popular summer reading choices for many reasons. Some people feel reading fiction is indulgent, so they wait until a summer vacation, long weekend or other holiday to take that time for themselves and read purely for pleasure.
Here are a few novels we've read and enjoyed:
Do you write and draw primarily with your right or left hand? Can you use either one with the same ease?
This Friday, August 13th is International Left Handers Day - a day to recognize left hand dexterity and the issues that left handers deal with in their daily lives.
A left handed writer has specific considerations when selecting stationery. Common challenges include smudging ink, nibs catching on paper, the left wrist resting on wire binding, poor ink flow and hand fatigue.
Left handed people don't all write the same way. Most tend to overwrite. Overwriting is when the hand is held above or "over" the line of writing. Writing this way often creates smudging and it can be tiring.
Underwriting is when the hand stays below the line of writing. This way of writing is far less likely to lead to smudging or fatigue.
To prevent any issues commonly experienced by left handed writers, there are some features to keep in mind: ergonomic design, smooth flow and fast drying ink. Ergonomic features such as triangular grips (e.g. Lamy and the TSWBI Eco-T pens) prevent hand cramps and fatigue. Smooth flow is commonly found in many rollerball pens and gel inks, some of which are fast drying. Some examples include Stabilo Bl@c rollerballs, Pilot Frixion, and G-Tec C4 and B Ball pens.
Fountain pens also have smooth flow; however, not all nibs and inks are equal. Although some brands offer left handed nibs, some lefties find that they are unnecessary. Many left handed fountain pen users find a medium or fine nib just as effective. Medium nibs are smoother than finer nibs, and though broad nibs are smoother still, more ink flows from their tips, which requires a longer drying time and increases the chance of smudging.
We hope you've enjoyed taking a few moments to experience things from another perspective. Or, if you are left handed, we hope you feel appreciated and a little more understood. Whatever your dominant hand, we can all celebrate by showing the lefties in our life a little kindness this Friday, August 13th!
Although lefties and righties write with different hands, we all read the same way. Next week, we'll turn the page to discuss a few of the books we've been reading and share some summer suggestions.
One of the truths of life is that there's an inherent cyclical nature to things. And so it is that we find ourselves here experiencing one of those cyclical events: the back-to-school season.
In an interview, Salma Hayek spoke of how she would get excited about covering her books with decorative paper at the start of each new school year. Have you ever tried that? Decorative papers and stickers can also be used to personalize storage boxes.
You may also be thinking of practical considerations. What works well in a backpack? Is the size and weight of what you're carrying appropriate? If you use a fountain pen, you may wish to switch to cartridges when you're on campus.
There are certainly many things to consider when selecting your stationery. This is especially true if you write with your left hand. We'll be back next week with more on the nuances of being a leftie!