New House Industries French Paper Stationery Sets Have The “Write” Stuff
There’s something visceral and intimate about putting pen to paper — whether it’s to jot down ideas in a notebook, document special moments and vent frustrations within the safety of a leather-bound journal, or express gratitude and affection in a handwritten letter or card. When I was a little girl, I’d spend hours scribbling in my glitter-covered journal, carefully attaching and closing the tiny lock that kept its contents hidden from curious eyes. Unfortunately for me, my brother was five years older than me, and he derived enormous pressure from tormenting his younger sister. One afternoon, when boredom reared its ugly head, my brother found amusement in breaking the diary’s lock (it was hardly a Fort Knox-level security measure, so a few firm taps did the trick) and proceeded to read the entire thing, then recite the passages in which I professed my undying love for whomever I had a crush on that week to my parents. They tried their hardest to conceal their bemused smirks, but I was so embarrassed I wanted the earth to just open up and swallow me whole (it was what we in Puerto Rico call a “Tierra, trágame!” moment). After that experience, I swore I’d never own a journal again, but I broke my promise fairly quickly. All throughout high school and college, I kept a journal close to me and, though I didn’t necessarily recount every single day’s occurrences, I certainly reached for it whenever I felt the need for a cathartic emotional release. Even now, despite my busy schedule, I try to write as often as possible in my journal. Why use paper when I have a computer, you ask? Well, there’s no delete button when you’re writing in ink and so you don’t spend so much time second-guessing yourself or worrying about proper grammar, passive vs. active verbs, and all sorts of writerly minutiae. Sure, you can scratch out sentences or reach for some White-Out but, more often than not, you’ll find yourself swept away by your words as they pour out of you in an unfettered stream of consciousness.
Nowadays, I’ve also taken a shine to sending physical thank you notes and greeting cards instead of relying on e-mails, texts, and e-cards. I remember the joy I felt whenever I opened up my mailbox to find a Hallmark card for my mother, who was notorious for sending cards for literally every occasion: birthdays, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Thanksgiving, Easter, Halloween, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and even St. Patrick’s Day (and no, we’re not Irish!). When I think of the smile those cards brought to my face, it makes me want to have the same impact on someone else’s life. And so, instead of pecking away on my keyboard, I take the time to hand-write in every card I send, hoping the recipient will appreciate the effort behind the gesture.
If, like me, you actually support the United States Postal Service staying in business and you prefer the feel of a physical card, tucked inside a chic envelope, to a personality-less text or e-mail, then you’ll love the latest stationery sets from House Industries. If you’re unfamiliar with House Industries, the company began as a font company and is now known for employing an array of artists who create fonts (which illustrators and designers can then add to their creative arsenals) and typography-covered objects ranging from housewares to art prints, clothing, stickers, blocks, and postcards,that speak to the brand’s witty and quirky yet clean and streamlined aesthetic.
Their new stationery sets, then, incorporate interesting color combinations and uniquely styled letters or symbols. The Spearmint Ampersand Stationery Set ($25 at HouseInd.com), pictured above, includes 10 sheets of 5.5″ x 8.5″ paper and 10 envelopes measuring 4.375″ x 5.75.” Each spearmint green sheet features a stylized ampersand symbol in a silver color, its back reversing the color combination so that silver takes center stage and tiny mint-colored ampersand symbols are scattered throughout. The matching envelopes, meanwhile, also feature an ampersand symbol along the back flap. Another fun option is the Bubblegum Braces Stationery ($25 at HouseInd.com), shown second above, which again includes 10 sheets and 10 envelopes (all with the same dimensions mentioned previously), but which feature pink paper adorned with brace symbols (otherwise known as curly brackets). Each sheet of paper features a silver curly bracket along the left-hand side, extending from the top to the bottom of the sheet, a clever placement given that it suggests the opening of a sentence or thought. Pairs of brackets, meanwhile, are faintly printed on the pink backdrop, all positioned at an angle and cleverly stacked into rows. Given that, in emoticon speak, open and close braces signify a hug, the effect is charming and endearing. The envelope, meanwhile, features a “closing” brace, signifying the end of the thought commenced on the note.
Other options include the Tangy Orange Banjo Wave Stationery Set ($25 at HouseInd.com) and the Fuse Green Photo-Lettering Stationery Set ($25 at HouseInd.com) pictured third and fourth above, respectively. The symbols used in these sets belong to the House Industries font and photo-lettering archive — for instance, the quotation mark on the Photo Lettering Stationery Set envelopes is part of the Worthe Numerals pack — making each design all the more unique.
In addition to their clever and modern aesthetic, these stationery sets are completely eco-friendly, made using recycled paper manufactured by the family-owned mill French paper, which has been in existence since 1871 and relies on hydroelectric power since 1992. In other words, you can scribble away on each sheet and not worry about harming the environment or leaving behind a large carbon footprint.