Sustainable Papers 101

While Earth Day only officially comes around once a year, we think the earth is worth celebrating every day.  Read on to find out about some of our more sustainable papers & a little bit about our paper-making process!  We'll also cover which of our products are vegan-friendly (hint: most of them!)

Sustainability Practices

We count on our suppliers and their sustainability programs for the manufacturing of our papers. Our largest suppliers are FSC certified, meaning they can source and track wood and fiber from responsibly managed forests. FSC is a robust forest management and certification program, with controls at every stage of the supply chain. It’s a reliable system for assessing and mitigating the risks of illegal forest harvesting.

A common misconception about using wood pulp for creating paper is that trees from old-growth forests or clear-cutting are used. That is not the case. In reality, trees are planted more like a crop and they are trees that grow quickly. The same land is used over and over again, similar to farming.

Vegan Products

This matter is very important to us and we make it a point to use plant-based and synthetic sizing in the manufacturing of nearly all of our papers.

Our 500 Series Gemini Watercolor, which is made as a traditional “old world” 100% cotton sheet on a cylinder mould machine, is our only paper to use a sizing that is created with animal byproduct made from leftover materials after food processing.  No animals are killed for the purpose of creating sizing for our papers.

With the exception of our Gemini Watercolor paper, all of our other papers and products are vegan-friendly and only use plant-based and synthetic sizing and glues.

More Earth-friendly Papers

Now for the fun part! Strathmore has many papers that contain post-consumer fibers, so choosing one can be a tough task.  We'll break them down below.

  • 400 Series Recycled Sketch
    • This 60lb/89gsm heavyweight sketch paper is made with 30% post-consumer fiber and is available in pads, rolls, & wirebound journals.  It is great for perfecting techniques with any dry media.

  • 400 Series Toned Sketch
    • Our 80lb/118gsm toned papers are available in gray and tan and are a favorite of artists worldwide.  They are made with 100% recycled, 30% post-consumer fiber and are available in pads, sheets, rolls, artist tiles, softcover and hardbound journals.  The toned sketch paper provides a perfect surface for graphite, chalk, charcoal, sketching sticks, markers, china markers, colored pencils, pens, and white gel pens.

  • 400 Series Recycled Drawing
    • This bright white, medium surface drawing paper is 80lb/130gsm is available in pads, sheets, rolls, and hardbound journals and is made with 30% post-consumer fiber. It is great for use with graphite pencil, colored pencil, charcoal, and sketching sticks.

  • 400 Series Artagain
    • Our Artagain paper is a fiber-enhanced paper made with 30% post-consumer fiber that is ideally suited for soft pastels, charcoal, & colored pencils.  It is 60lb/160gsm, available in assorted tints and pads, sheets, & rolls.

Artagain colors:

  • 400 Series Toned Mixed Media
    • The Toned Mixed Media paper is great for finished artwork. It has the attributes of a watercolor paper, but with a vellum drawing finish.  The Cool Gray, Warm Tan, and Steel Blue options provide a mid-toned background to help you create a wider range of values.  The paper is made with 100% recycled, 30% post-consumer fiber and provides a perfect working surface for watercolor, gouache, graphite, colored pencil, markers, charcoal, gel pens, and more.  The paper is 184lb/300gsm & available in sheets, pads, softcover, and hardbound journals.

If this list is a little overwhelming, just remember this: our more sustainable pads all have green covers!  Green cover = green paper (not literally, just earth-friendly).


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