It’s hard to believe it’s been an entire month (!) since National Stationery Show opened its first doors of the new decade at Javits Center. Reviewing the photos I took, I realized a few things:

— As long as people communicate via traditional correspondence, it will continue to evolve to reflect our ever-changing world and views. That’s what makes it interesting to me, though change is scary for some (and I get that too!).

—  Why limit compelling design and verbiage to cards and art prints? Stickers, patches, mugs, keychains … all of these are repositories of personality, style and belief. Never before have you instantly gotten so much information about someone by observing, say, the stickers on their water bottle.

— Even though it feels like I am constantly taking photos at shows, I don’t take nearly enough! Even so, mine stink technically speaking. That’s completely my fault — if a maker intrigues you, head on over to their sight to see a far better representation of their work.

With that being said, novelty in the stationery world is often driven by its newest players. So these NSS newbies definitely provide a sense of which way the paper wind is blowing!

I got to see Amador Collective for the first time in person, and this feel-good California range did not disappoint! It marks the first sighting of stickers in this post, and you can see why they are such a natural extension for makers, as they bring a range’s artistry to life in a different form as they expand its retail statement.

As much as stationery is about cutting edge vernacular, I definitely noticed a turning back to one’s heritage and the mystical symbols of the past. Amita draws on her Indian heritage as well as the character of the Pacific Northwest to create the lively Amicreative range.

I spied this tote from Brittany Paige in Best New Product shortly after I arrived, and knew I couldn’t miss this booth. It didn’t disappoint — and is definitely a range to watch!

Greta Jane Paper Co. was another find that salutes the female form and mindset. Check out her washi tapes! I took a few pictures of some downright hysterical cards. There is a really great one featuring a drawing of a penis that I couldn’t not text my husband (not shown here, but if you head over to her site it’s hard to miss!). Unsurprisingly, Greta told me it sells out first at craft fairs.

I am completely smitten with Honeyberry Studios. This Seattle house of paper is created by Yuko Miki, and her work has a very fresh, authentic, graphic appeal.

One range I was acquainted with but hadn’t seen in person yet was Joy Paper Co. These colorful, graphic cards are impactful and very sweet, like the greatest of friends.

Let me just say that Cannabis Culture is alive and well … even if it hasn’t quite hit your neck of the woods yet. Kushcards brings it into the stationery domain. One of their gift bags won Best New Product!

Some makers just have this ability to hone in on and reflect what is going on in the minds and hearts of many, and, judging from the crowds around her booth, Kwohtations is one of these rare finds. Janine’s work is compelling and not like anyone else’s … I can’t wait to see what she does next! One retailer gushed to me that she can’t keep the planner stickers in stock, so check them out for yourself below.

I noticed Lane Paper Works in Best New Product. The world really does need these Women of History Bandanas — Frida Kahlo and RBG are also in the series.

I will never stop laughing at Letterpress Jess cards. And she’s right down the street from me, in Canton! She definitely has the Ohio vibe down.

On a far more refined note we have Maria Papeleria. If you crave luxe touches like engraving and lined envelopes, this range is for you!

Middle Dune is another enchanting little range, this one out of Cape Cod. Full of meaning and more than a little mystery, I especially love those little belly-banded jotters. That color (or neutral?) contrast is everything.

Pike Street Press hails from Seattle (is it overtaking Portland in paper popularity?) and definitely merits further examination!

Quick Brown Fox Letterpress really puts a colorful spin on the medium — and Kate’s Cherry Blossom Tree Calendar follows one such majestic being throughout the year for a brilliant take on the idea of how much occurs in a year, naturally.

I wrote about SOZY Pencils a while back, but let me just say Izzy and Sophie win the prize for most adorable booth!

I definitely regret not spending more time in the Stephanie Tara booth. She is putting some great imagery and sentiment out there!

Thoughtful Human was a great Emerging Designer find. Finally, something that lives up to its name: These cards are zero-waste, plantable — and they’re on a mission to help us all work through the yukkier stuff that life brings.

Looks like this is the second NSS post I’m ending with Tigerpocket Press. Can I just say that Tammie’s range is even sweeter in life? (Plus she is adorable!) Her illustrations, the sentiments, the slightly reduced trim size … all come together seemingly effortlessly.

This just skims the surface of my #NSS2020 finds. Stay tuned for more, as well as news about the August edition of National Stationery Show. For now, save the dates: August 9-12. I hope to see you there!

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