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Getting Crafty With Neenah Environment®

Written by in Create


Letting Their Creativity Run Wild

Elements [elementsdesign.com], based in Branford, Conn., hosts monthly Craft Nights for clients, friends, and family. “It’s a fun way to connect with friends and make things with our hands,” says Elements principal, Amy Graver. “The theme for the party was ‘Summer,’ and it was inspired by the beautiful sheets of Neenah ENVIRONMENT® Papers we had in the office.”



Above: The craft party crew hard at work on their masterpieces.

The parties are very informal, and not limited to creative types. Guests are encouraged to have fun and let their creativity run wild. To prepare for the party, the Elements team made a few sample projects and pinned the results on corkboard to inspire party-goers. They also selected some fun and whimsical images and printed them out on various color sheets, inviting guests to add their own designs to the images.


Above: Sample projects pinned on Elements’ library corkboards.



Above: These photos were printed on Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT® Concrete
using a laser printer, then hand trimmed. Guests were encouraged to add
their own design elements to the images. Photo: Chelsea May

A flower theme emerged, as guests gathered around the big table and painted, cut, and curled the paper to create different flower patterns and backgrounds. When people are creating, the conversation comes easy. “We started with our sample flower, but then guests got crafty from there – sharing ideas, and helping embellish each other’s flowers,” Graver says. “Ideas were flying around the group! The best part of Craft Night is the experimentation, sharing of ideas, trials and errors, fixes, surprises and success!” (Wine helps, too.)


Above: Karen Jensen and Jenni Friedman trade tips around the craft table.

The crafters colored, painted, and sewed their paper creations. Jenni Friedman, who teaches in the Printmaking Department at the Hartford Art School, says she couldn’t wait to get her hands on the paper and start making flowers. “I have drawn and made prints of all sorts of flora for years, but I recently purchased Paper to Petal, by Rebecca Thuss and Patrick Farrell, and now I’m obsessed with paper flowers,” she says.


Above: A dip-dyed sheet of Neenah’s CLASSIC CREST® Paper sheet features fun fringe.


Above: Lynda Mollow creates texture using tissue paper glued
to Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT Concrete.

“It was fun working with the group. Another crafter taught me how to make a French knot and we shared technical information, like which paper worked better for which parts,” Friedman says. “I was even able to make a stem out of the paper, which I haven’t been able to do with others.”


Above: Friedman puts the finishing touches on her paper flower. The petals are made
using Neenah’s CLASSIC® Linen in Natural White
and the stem and leaves were made from Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT Honeycomb.


Above: Lindsay Branscome uses a quilling technique to create a
tree using Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT Grocer Kraft.


“We have all levels of crafters come to our parties–from non-crafters to designers –and not all of them are familiar with how paper will behave when, for example, using watercolors,” Graver says. “But no matter what we did to this paper – from sewing, to making sturdy petals, to hot glueing, and running it through our printer – Neenah’s papers stood up to the challenge and looked amazing.”


Above: Amy Graver paints and dip dyes Neenah’s CLASSIC CREST.
Photo: Chelsea May

The resulting projects were stunning. Each person brought their own flair to their project, creating unique paper crafts that didn’t follow a specific formula. There were lots of laughs and lots of helping hands. (And wine.)


Above: Embroidery had an interesting effect on this sea urchin photo printed
on Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT in Grocer Kraft.



Above: Neon washi tape brings a pop of color
to this vintage photograph printed on

Neenah’s ENVIRONMENT in Concrete.

At the end of the night, new friends were made and the flowers became gifts as they departed. They are all looking forward to the next Elements Craft Night. “The color palette was so inviting and beautiful that it was easy for our group to be inspired by just putting a sheet in their hands. The paper added another layer of beauty and interest to our projects,” said Amy.


Above: Completed craft projects all created using Neenah papers
on display as Elements Craft Night draws to a close.

Note : All Photos by: Steve Walter Photo unless otherwise noted.