I used to be a true bookworm. Until my early 30's I typically read about three or four novels a week. Then I got busy with other things and I stopped reading fiction. I didn't have the time and patience for it any longer. The Internet made it even worse. The few books I read were loaded onto my iPad, but mostly I was watching film, YouTube videos and binge watching TV series at Netflix and HBO. I also stopped writing and dedicated all my efforts on photos, images and design, mostly online. This has been the dominating trend for a long time, and I started to wonder if future generations would be able to read or write. Nobody seemed to be patient enough to do it.
Lately, my old favorite books have been calling me again. And I've stopped by the old dear bookshops (there are a few of them still left), looking for new literature. I'm craving books on paper and I'm longing for time to read. I'm also longing for written stories, story telling, journaling, to write again. For some time, I've been looking for printed magazines, and I've found a new love (hugely popular among scrapbookers and designers), the Dutch Flow Magazine (see the image below). In the empty space after the many printed magazines that have been closed down in the last decade, this one is a true joy.
All this new found passion for paper is no coincidence at all. We are in the beginning of a new trend that is a renaissance for good old books and literature, a natural step in the bigger paper trend. We have seen 'the planner craze', a trend that is peaking right now but that had its first pioneers a couple of years ago. I finally caved and got my own paper planner in 2013.
In the last few weeks I have seen trend forecasters talking about plain old books, and posting pretty images of book filled shelves, like the one below. Book circles are more popular than ever. And, office supply manufacturers are acting dazed and confused as they discover that the demand for the paper planners they stopped manufacturing only a year ago or so, due to lack of interest from customers, suddenly are the hottest thing in the industry.
Ikea have made a loving tribute to Apple, replacing the Macbook with the 'bookbook' commercial, tuning in to the paper trend:
In the latest issue of Flow magazine, there's a section dedicated to books and even a little journal where you can record your reads.
All this is telling me that books and paper are currently a big trend.
Why now? The thing is that we are tired of the information overload from the Internet. We don't like a smartphone calendar aggressively beeping at us every hour. All we want to do is to sit down with a nice cup of tea and read a book, plan our day, make a few notes on paper with a proper pen. We want to read a 'bookbook', not a Kindle book or e-book or anything else from a shining glass screen.
We are tired of the stressful busy life, so the new trend is 'the slow life'. We've already seen the 'slow food' trend for quite a few years, and it extends to the 'slow life'.
The slow life is also a status marker that is showing the world that you have so much time on your hands that you can sit down and read a novel or embellish your planner.
Ironically, I fear that the aim for a 'slow life' might actually put more stress on women with a full time job and the kids and a home to take care of. When on earth are these women going to have the time to just sit down and read and relax?
What will this new paper trend lead to? Is there something in it for scrapbookers? I guess that photo prints and albums seem to be back, as well. I'm not seeing a big come back for traditional scrapbooking.
More likely, we will see two current trends continue. One is the pocket page scrapbooking. Slip your photo prints into pockets along with pretty printed cards. Quick and easy. Same thing with putting a few stickers in your daily planner.
The other trend is art journaling, including using mixed media on your scrapbooking pages. This taps into the 'slow life' trend, because these projects take time. You literally have to watch the paint dry. LOL!
The common thing is, after all, our passion for paper. The passion that almost got lost among the fancy bells and whistles of the digital era. Enjoy touching the uneven surface of a book page, or breathing in the wonderful scent of a printed magazine.
As a book and library lover, my favorite book related scrapbooking collection is Public Library from October Afternoon. You can find these products (including my favorite stamp set from this line!) and more from the collection at Simon Says Stamp!
I used that adorable bookfox stamp the other day, on this page for Pinkfresh and Pretty Little Studio.
So, what's your favorite book right now? I would love to get some recommended reading! :)