The Swiss greeting card publisher ABC has launched a brand-new series presenting an original art style on an innovative paper medium. The series, entitled ‘Natura’, contains 32 cards that showcase vibrant flower designs on grass paper.
ABC’s greeting card range consists of nearly 3,000 different designs. Every year the family-owned company, founded in 1905, adds themes that they develop from new trends or their customers’ needs. Most importantly, ABC wishes to make a positive contribution to society.
‘In these times of climate change and a global pandemic, we wanted to develop an environmentally friendly card series with expressive and colourful images to delight our fellow humans’, said Roland Tschanz, managing director of ABC. EcoLine Grass paperboard, made from recycled and grass fibres, was therefore chosen for the card and envelope of this new series. ABC consciously decided not to use a transparent foil wrap.
ABC engaged Anne Pryor, an internationally renowned artist from Minneapolis, to create the exclusive flower designs. The artist, who describes herself as a soul painter, drips vibrant colours mixed with essential oils such as myrrh and patchouli onto paper or other media. She then uses a metal straw to blow the colours into floral and other shapes. Anne calls her style ‘lovitude’, a term derived from the words ‘love’ and ‘gratitude’.
‘It was an exciting challenge to print and convert this new style of paper. Thanks to our long experience in print production, we have achieved an impressive print result. In fact, it was the natural look and feel of this paper that initially attracted us to it’, said Harry Steiner, production manager at ABC. Indeed, the card producer’s printing skills bring the flowers and colourful designs to life on the grass paper. Each card is also embellished with a touch of gold foil to emphasise the various occasions represented by the cards.
To produce this special paper, grass from fallow land and compensation areas based as locally as possible to the paper mill is used. These pastures grow naturally, as no fertiliser is used. To protect biodiversity, they are not mown until the end of June, as stipulated by law. No pasture destined for animal feed is used.
The grass is sun-dried in the field, then shredded and compressed into pellets, which facilitates transport to and storage in the paper mill. Prior to pumping the paper pulp onto the machine, the pellets are poured, along with wastepaper and water, into a huge mixing trough, known as a pulper. There is a pleasant smell of hay and freshly mown grass in the air during the paper production. However, those who suffer from allergies do not need to worry, as possible allergens are inhibited during the paper-drying process.