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Paper, paper everywhere…

We love getting post, especially when it’s lovely, colourful post (and not brown envelopes with bills in) like this! Our print samples for our Midnight Garden range just dropped on the mat and were obligingly delivered by Pippin, office dog extra-ordinaire. (Keep an eye out for more Pippin news in the coming months.) Oh the joys of printed paper!

Paper Stocks

As we’ve mentioned before, environmentally friendly paper is at the very top of our lists. The first question we asked our lovely printers was ‘is it FSC approved?’ If it’s not, we don’t want it. So what does this actually mean?

You’ve probably seen the familiar FSC logo printed on magazines, books, wrapping paper and, of course, greetings cards. This mark is a certification that ensures the product comes from sustainably sourced materials, and that our incredible forests are being conserved for generations to come. They do this by upholding principles, including:

  • Upholding local laws;
  • Ensuring workers’ rights and employment conditions for forest staff;
  • Upholding the rights of indigenous peoples within forests;
  • Maintaining and enhancing the wellbeing of the local community;
  • Maintaining long term economic viability and environmental/social benefits of the forest;
  • Maintain, preserve or restore the ecosystem and environment;
  • Monitoring and assessing the impact on the forest continually;
  • Maintain high conservation values.

This process means that though the paper is still made from trees cut down from forests, rather than recycled from existing paper, the impact is minimal and steps are made to replace and preserve the forest it comes from.

Of course, we want our cards to look and feel as good as they can, too. We’ve seen lots of samples, rubbed them on our faces, looked at them in natural and electric light, agonised over colours and finishes, and we’ve found the one that fits us.

The majority of our cards are printed on GF Smith Callisto, which is FSC Certified Mixed Sources and made here in the UK. It is also Elemental Chlorine Free, which means there’s no harmful waste products in its environments. Otherwise, we use recycled paper stocks made from 100% post-consumer waste.

Envelope Heaven

I don’t know about you, but I was always fascinated with swatches when I was a kid. Whether it was rows of embroidery silks in the craft shop, blocks of lipsticks in Boots, or (my favourite) packets of felt tip pens and crayons, all arranged meticulously in rainbow order (should the yellow fade into the green, or orange and red?!) seeing a group of products in every possible colour was just delightful. Just me? Ok…

Anyway, since launching Middle Mouse, one of my favourite things has been receiving samples of envelopes from the various different manufacturers around the country. Some come as little slips of paper, arranged in a flick book, some are little packets with mini envelopes in EVERY COLOUR IMAGINABLE (sorry got a bit excited), some are tiny circles hidden behind cardboard. Each one represents a myriad possibilities and choices for our greetings cards, and also a bit of a quandary.

At first, we thought we might stick with a single ‘signature’ envelope, maybe a really nice laid white, or a recycled kraft, something neutral and chic that showed off our designs to their fullest potential. And then we put a lime green envelope next to our Grow Your Own Pot Plant samples and our hearts melted. We made a noise similar to the one we make when we see a really big chocolate cake. And so now, as with wands in the Wizarding World, it’s the card that chooses the envelope, not us. If we make the ‘noise’, then we know the magic has happened and we have a winner.

What do you think? Do you prefer white, kraft or coloured envelopes? Join in the conversation with us on social media.

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Twitter: @MidMouseGroup

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