All newspaper writers have heard that the stuff they compose today has an excellent chance of being used to wrap tomorrow’s mackerel. ~Ira Berkow
These days, newspapers should be so lucky!
The state of journalism and in particular, newspapers, is tenuous. With everyone now having a “voice” online – be it blogging, tweeting, you tube, etc. — traditional news channels and the journalists they employ are scrambling to find their footing and a new niche. Newspapers – news actually in printed form on that antiquated standby called paper – have been folding across the nation. The remaining are making the transition to online in an attempt to recapture relevancy and more importantly for survival… an audience.
I am a holdout for the newspaper in its traditional medium. Sundays are relished for the morning ritual: 8 a.m. retrieval from my front door the thick and rubber band-bound New York Times. With a steaming cup of coffee I spend the next several hours prioritizing sections and working my way through the news of the week, the personal profiles, the lifestyle features and inserts. Sitting at the computer scrolling through pages just doesn’t have the same effect. I’ve tried.
Apparently I am not alone in my passion for newsprint. Newspaper dresses were a trend in the 1960s. Since then, I’ve stumbled upon many creative results of repurposing discarded newsprint. From my beloved boots purchased in Paris to a host of fashionable accessories and clothing items, there is a collective ode to newspapers.
Reproducing the print on fabric has met with great success. John Galliano’s collection, launched in 2000 (and worn by SJP on Sex and the City), was inspired by people living on the street and is a theme he has reintroduced through several line extensions (including underwear).
Newsprint by very nature is graphic, often meaningful (depending on content, origin or time period) and surprisingly wearable. Not to mention, in-step with the green movement.
Imagine my delight when I discovered last weekend the LA based Dahli Coles, an artisan who has taken these very pages from newspapers and created an extensive line of accessories. Called “THE NEWS,” the line started six years ago as a school project. Made from recycled newspapers, the material is treated with a water resistant finish and sewn into one-of-a-kind handbags, wallets, pouches and more. The collection numbers about 40 different styles with prices from $18 to $220.00. The hot item of the moment: the clutch.
The next evolution for The News will be to go global with international papers.
Custom items – think local papers or newspapers saved from travels, historical moments, vintage magazines, company publicity, press materials, wedding announcements — are available with turnaround typically 4-6 weeks.
The traditional newspaper may go the way of cassette players, rotary dial phones and typewriters, but this is one obsolescent item you can wear evermore.
About the author: As seen on ABC and in Marie Claire, Lucky and numerous other media outlets, Kate Horan established herself as a resource for Italian travel and fashion. Following a successful run in public relations, she launched her artisan accessories business, Sorelle Bionde, with an eye toward Italy. She immersed herself in the pursuit of uncovering new talent and unique expressions of style to ensure her clients have the most interesting and unique accessories available. Kate will live on in our hearts.