Style Court

Eight Years of Textiles, History, Art, Gardens, and a Little Mental Traveling with Courtney Barnes

10.30.2008

Asian-Inspired Gift Wrap 2008

This week while on assignment for Atlanta Intown Paper, I visited Paper Source, the newly opened emporium on North Highland Avenue. The shop has a stellar collection of decorative Japanese paper and I left with a few sheets in my shopping bag. Although this durable paper is generally used by crafters and artists for special projects, I like to use it occasionally to wrap small gifts.

It costs between $7 to $10 per sheet, so using it as wrapping paper isn't the most economically sound idea. But for a friend who will appreciate it, the exquisite paper really elevates a humble gift. Some of my friends and I purposely exchange inexpensive birthday presents that are all about the personal meaning, and it's fun to cover these kinds of gifts in luxe trimmings. The warm tones shown here are nice for fall.

Imari-inspired paper is on the package above. As Gotheborg explains, "Imari" is really a Japanese harbor located near the Arita kiln. In the West, the term "Japanese Imari" has become the trade name of a Japanese ware with a decoration usually in underglaze blue with added red, gilt and occasionally green enamels. The Eastern name for this style of decoration is aka-e (red painting) and was first produced around 1640.

The papers above are suggestive of a Japanese textile.

Speaking of luxe, Asian-style packaging, a few months ago I had the pleasure of researching a story about lacquer for Southern Accents. Two talented decorators offered some input: Phoebe Howard (she found the gorgeous antique boxes above) and Charlotte Moss. Not surprisingly, Ms. Moss had an incredibly sumptuous idea when it came to creative uses for the boxes -- simply add a lavish ribbon and make one a gift box! For more see the November issue.

Last photograph by Lauren Rubenstein

32 comments:

Pigtown-Design said...

You TOTALLY don't want to hear about the incredible papers in bought in london for an average of about 95p per sheet (and these were 24 x 18 sheets).

Style Court said...

Meg -- I'm sure you are coming home with amazing things!

Mrs. Blandings said...

I was just in Paper Source planning our Christmas card. I could putter for hours. The boys always groan when I say we have to stop there.

Wonderful story in Southern Accents - what fun to interview Howard and Moss!

Down Comforter said...

wow
wonderful
good luck

•ciaotay• said...

i love all things asian!!! i lived in bangkok for a short stint! these are fab!

Style Court said...

Patricia -- isn't it a fun store? If you had girls they would probably love it.

Thanks for reading!

Style Court said...

Thank you Down Comforter.

Style Court said...

Ciaotray -- you must have seen amazing things there. Thanks for stopping by :)

Chicaholic said...

oooh those are perdy!

-Chicaholic

Cote de Texas said...

Just got it today! wonderful = will this be an ongoing association??? I hope so!!!

I was wondering when you were going to preview your gift wrap - you're a little late this year! This is beautiful! It gave me another great idea - at MIchaels - they have soft bound books of scrapbooking paper - some of it is so wonderful, especially by the "designer" scrapbook companies - the papers are like fine wallpapers.

Style Court said...

Oh Joni -- these are just for November birthday gifts!

I'm trying to build the anticipation for Christmas. Great idea you have about the alternate papers at craft shops.

Have you seen the Hanukkah celebration in SA?

Glad you saw the box story :)

Anna Spiro said...

Beautiful papers Courtney!!
xx
Anna

Janet said...

Courtney ~ I can't wait to see the piece in Southern Accents! Congrats. BTW, I found a couple of old Japanese lacquer boxes last year and put all of my moms little gifts in them, and tied them up with a bow. They looked so great!

Janet said...

P.S. I forgot to mention that you could copy the Imari papers on a color copier...obviously the quality won't be as good...but not bad!

Style Court said...

Anna -- you would love this shop!

Style Court said...

Chicaholic -- glad you like them too.

Style Court said...

How wonderful Janet! You and Charlotte had the same idea.

Style Court said...

Oh and Janet, thanks for the good cheer and the ideas!

Karena said...

Love the wonderful paper;it makes the gift so special. The boxes!

Capegirl said...

Those papers are good enough to frame

Brilliant Asylum said...

I will have to stop by this new source--perhaps these papers will inspire some oragami projects. It has been years since I have done any, but I still practice on post-it notes and gum wrappers. Thanks for the tip!

Erin Sledd said...

Paper Source was a great resource when I lived in San Francisco—I was so pleased to see that they opened a shop here. When I have a project that is small enough in quantity or personal, I thoroughly enjoy using their wonderful paper. They have the best collection of patterned papers I've seen in a mainstream store.

Laura said...

I am in love with that store--I seem to find a reason to go every week! And it has me really excited about the holidays. I think some of those papers would make great bookcovers--especially if you are trying to organize your books by color and have a few that don't fit your color scheme.

iloveupstate.com said...

Love that paper. I try to buy big bundles at Pearl River Trading to do special packages. I've been known to use sweet origami paper for little packages too.

Style Court said...

i love upstate -- yes, pearl river is great!

laura -- love your book cover idea :)

Esra said...

I really love these boxes, they are amazing! Adding a ribbon to make it a gift box?-No way, these boxes should stay with me ;-)

The Peak of Chic said...

I just love those boxes. I'm with Esra- I might be greedy and keep the boxes for myself! Congrats on the SA piece!

Style Court said...

esra, jennifer -- i know what you mean about keeping them!

oh and jennifer, thanks!

beachbungalow8 said...

always love your gift wrappings!

Style Court said...

thanks megan!

Mélanie said...

Wonderful wrapping paper with asiatic inspiration! YOU, guys have such a wonderful collection

Mélanie said...

Wonderful wrapping paper with asiatic inspiration! YOU, guys have such a wonderful collection