Paper crafting class takes creativity outside the box

First Posted: 12/5/2014

Outside the box.

That’s where creative thinking belongs, when it comes to paper crafting, according to Maria Pappa, of Clarks Summit, instructor of a local class on the topic.

“A lot of people get locked into certain color schemes they like or think they’re stuck with,” she told her attentive students during a Tips, Tools and Techniques session on color held Dec. 4 at the Abington Community Library.

Encouraging crafters to put aside fear and preconceived ideas about which shades on the color wheel should go together, she suggested they experiment with scraps of card stock to determine for themselves which colors do go together. Some examples of color pairings one may not normally think to try, she said, are yellows and greys, darker shades with lighter ones and pink with brown, which she noted was especially popular during the 1980s.

She also pointed out adding a small splash of color to a project can give it that extra “pop” it needs to stand out.

These tips are just a small sampling of those offered during the regular paper crafting class, held at 6 p.m. on the third Thursday of every month, with additional Tips, Tools and Techniques sessions held bi-monthly on the first Thursday of the month at the library. New adult members of all skill levels are always welcome. Pre-registration is required, and can be made by calling the library at 570-587-3440 or stopping in during regular hours.

Cost per class is $10 and the instructor will inform participants in advance if an extra materials fee is required on a particular date.

One regular attendee, Marge Lord, of South Abington Township, described the class as “fun,” saying the enjoys the “camaraderie” aspect of being able to come together with other crafters who posses the same passion for the art.

Sandy Longo, head of public services and assistant director at the library, appreciates the “creative license” and inspiration she is able to gather from the class.

Erin Hubert, of Clarks Summit, enjoys the time away each month to do something relaxing.

“When you focus on the project,” she said, “you forget about everything else.”

The others agree, Longo adding, “It’s an escape.”

“Just like with any other craft or group that people get involved in,” Pappa said, “this has really been kind of a support system for people, too. As you go along, you find out people have different things that are going on in their lives – some people might be dealing with issues like with aging parents, or someone that’s ill in their family, or something like that – so it’s also kind of a support and a way for people to have a little bit of an outlet, like a respite, from the rest of the world.”

The art of paper crafting includes a broad range of categories, mostly focusing on handmade cards and gifts, even 3D creations, all made of paper and sometimes embellished with other items, such as ribbon. Pappa pointed out just the concept of making something out of paper can be refreshing in the current digital and tech-driven age.

“Once people get into it,” she said, “it seems to be one of those things that they really enjoy, and they enjoy learning all of the different techniques that go along with it.

“It’s not only creating something with paper, but you can also use ribbon, you can use different types of embellishments, buttons and rhinestones and all those kinds of things on the cards or whatever you’re creating,” she added. “And, of course, there’s all the different techniques with rubber stamping and coloring and things like that, as well. It’s really endless when you think about it.”

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