I want you all to meet Rani. Her gift wrapping paper caught my eye on Instagram so I followed her! Then she followed me! We have become friends although we have never met in person…yet!
1.Tea or coffee?
- I love that your paper is handmade. Is it eco friendly too?
Yes. Our paper is handmade out of recycled cotton rags, textile scraps and waste paper.
- My favourite design is definitely the marbled paper, which design is your favourite?
I love the marbled paper too. I especially like the fact that we do not have 100% control over how the patterns develop and it is beautiful how the colours merge to create stunning patterns. Also, it is never possible to have two identical sheets, which makes it even more unique and special.
I equally love the block printed papers. I think that adapting this ancient textile process on to paper gives fabulous results. The finished sheet almost looks like a piece of fabric – it reminds me so much of traditional sarees. But the beauty is that we could use this ancient process to create modern designs too! We’ve recently created some new transport themed blocks like bicycles and buses which look quite funky and cool!
- Some of your papers are lovely enough to frame! Who comes up with the designs?
Thank you. Our designs are a combined effort of trend led ideas coming from me and the skilled labour of our artisans who have years of experience in what they do.
- How did you come up with the name Paper Mirchi? What does it mean?
‘Mirchi’ simply means chilli in Hindi. I love chillies and how they add punch to any food. My aim is to spice up this beautiful handmade cotton paper with various textile processes like tie and dye, block printing, batik, marbling and embroidery to create gorgeous luxury giftwrap.
- Tell me about your background? I’m guessing you’re arty!
I’m actually a qualified textile designer and have worked in the textile industry in the early part of my career in India. I’m also very passionate about gift wrapping and enjoy spending time and effort in wrapping my presents – I believe that it truly makes the gift look and feel special.
Paper Mirchi is a natural result of this.
7.When I’ve used handmade paper in the past it’s been rather thick and it’s been difficult to make it well behaved around the corners of a gift wrap. Your was lovely to work with…. how did you manage that?
Thank you. We were very aware of this problem and have worked out the desired thickness of the paper which still retains the feeling of luxury but does not get too bulky around the edges when folded down.
- You’re a very busy entrepreneur , what’s your go-to snack?
Chocolate! The darker the better!!!
- Embroidered paper is an interesting concept! How did that happen?
Embroidered paper is a result of a lot of trial and error with various styles of embroidery, yarns, size of needles, etc. In principle, I believed that it should work because cotton paper has exceptional strength. It took several attempts to get it right and I think what we’ve achieved is an absolutely novelty product which is sure to impress the recepients.
- What’s your next step? Where can people find out more?
We’re a small business at the moment but I think that there is huge potential in our products. We have a steadily growing stream of followers on Instagram and you could also find out more about our ranges on our website www.papermirchi.co.uk. We have very recently launched our first range on Amazon too.
But, going forward my aim is to see Paper Mirchi giftwrap in niche gift shops and department stores nationwide.
We are also considering adding more product lines like gift boxes and gift bags in the future.