Nous Sommes: We Are

Nous Sommes: We Are

 The Sunday Paper #90

Paper of the Week: Duplex Papers


My first job after college was with a commercial printing company in New York City, and I learned a lot about paper there. One of the papers I was introduced to was duplex papers, which are usually a cover stock consisting of two sheets that are laminated together: one color on one side and another color on the other. I often make double-sided sheets in the papermaking process, to add imagery to a book cover, but there are many other applications. This commercially available Purple/Aegean Paper features two sheets of thai unryu paper laminated together in a purple and teal combination.

How have you used double sided sheets?


In the Studio:

I spent the last couple of weeks designing and picking out papers for a new Custom Paper Pack which I’ll roll out later this week during my bi-annual on-line paper sale (read about it here next week). Take a peek at the bottom of this image – we’ll be using that duplex paper featured above to make a stitched paper pouch.

sneak peak


Check out the new artist’s book Nous Sommes by Ioana Stoian (and be sure to watch the video that shows how it unfolds). Nous sommes is a physical manifestation of the spiritual nature of our souls, illustrated through the use of color, structure, and form. It is a contemplation of life, the game we play; and the universe, the puzzle we all fit into. Nous Sommes is on view at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts through February 19th and was created in a limited edition of nine. Oh, and the papers are handmade!

© 2015 Ioana Stoian, Nous Sommes

© 2015 Ioana Stoian, Nous Sommes

If you’re in the Chicago area, check out the play Animals Out of Paper: Andy, a calculus teacher and avid fan, pressures a reclusive Ilana, a world famous origami artist, into becoming an unwitting mentor to a troubled teenage prodigy, Suresh. These three intriguingly flawed characters begin to reshape and mold each other’s lives in much the same way they fold and crease their origami art. I wonder who made the paper props! 


I’ve written about Steve Messam before. He’s a master of paper bridges and he’s done it again. This bridge, created with 54,390 pieces of paper (and no adhesive) supported the new Range Rover as it made its short journey across. The bridge was constructed using specially designed wooden abutments, which are structures made to support the pressure of an arch. Builders then tightly stacked the paper atop the supports, held in place by a temporary framework. Now that’s paper engineering!


This is a feel-good story if there ever was one. Origami master Bernie Peyton spends one day a week at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland teaching sick kids how to do origami. I believe it when he says that nothing compares to the smiles he gets from children during his weekly visits teaching children the craft at Oakland Children’s.


Here’s a lovely video about back-to-the-landers Jim Croft and Melody Eckroth who live off the grid in Idaho and grow flax which they beat with their homemade stamping mill, fell trees for book boards and scavenge the forest for elk and deer bones to make tools and handles for their willow baskets, among other things.  

Sunday Paper ClickIf you enjoyed reading The Sunday Paper today, why not sign up to get it delivered to your in-box each and every Sunday? Click here to subscribe (it’s free), and you’ll receive my nifty pop-up alphabet template as a thank you gift! 

If you read this blog regularly, would you consider making a donation to support the research, writing, design and delivery of The Sunday Paper? Click on that cute paper button (I made that paper) to see how you can provide support.

And if you run a paper-related business, you might be interested in promoting your business in The Sunday Paper.

Thank you to those who have pledged your support, and enjoy your Sunday!


  1. Carole Sauter says:

    I love my Sunday paper. It’s the only one I get! Thank you and see you in May when you come to Tacoma”

  2. Al Brown says:

    Helen, not too long ago you posted plans for a pop-up CD cased, based on an ad piece by Mucho. I’ve lost the link to that blog. Can you send me the reference to it?

    • Helen Hiebert says:

      Hi Al,
      I’m sorry, but that doesn’t ring a bell… it doesn’t mean that it isn’t there, but I can’t recall which post it would be on. Did you try scrolling through the last few months of posts? Sorry I’m not more helpful on this one! – Helen

  3. Al Brown says:

    No worries–I may have seen it somewhere else. Thanks for your blog; between your activities and references to what other paper artists are doing, it’s a constant source of interest and inspiration.