Why Pen + Paper + Stationery is Making a Comeback: Millennials Agree

“Everything old is new again.” We’ve heard that saying, (and it applies to the comeback we’re seeing with fedoras, vinyl records, crop tops, funky colored hair, gemstones, and vintage clothing) but does it really apply to putting pen to paper? According to us millennials, yes it does. I’ve worked at a stationery store for nearly two months and it has proven it to be true. Hand-written notes on fun paper is now becoming a form of self-expression — like giving a little piece of yourself away. Spending $5 on a card with luxurious details like glitter, sound, and foil stamped quotes, is seemingly less extravagant than it once was. (By the way, at Hitch Studio, the cards are always “buy 3 get 1 free”!)When is comes to purchasing stationery, the ages vary, which proves that everyone — even millennials — appreciate good paper products like note cards and high-quality stationery.

A recent article stated that the consumption of paper among millennials is growing and is becoming much more common. Sarah Turk, a stationery analyst at IBISWorld says, “Instead of it being more of an older consumer that values paper, we’re seeing a lot of millennials also purchasing paper products. I think that especially in a digital age,” she adds, “paper now has more value than it ever has.”

IMG_2245Various retailers are seeing a dramatic increase among day-planners and other stationery sales among young women. Instagram is overflowing with various hashtags from devoted planner-loving Millennial’s like #planneraddict, #plannergeek, and #plannerobsessed. It’s a strange love affair.

“The last place a millennial is going to shop is a Hallmark store. They’ll go to a pop-up shop, street fair, or an independent store, where they will have a real experience,” Patti Stracher, Director of the National Stationary Show, said. It’s all about the experience for the consumers.

For example, you can find Emily McDowell’s witticisms and wry observations on cards that say, “I wish I could take away your pain. Or at least take away the people who compare it to the time their hamster died” and a card that says, “I will not compare myself to strangers on the internet.” Stationery now offers a product that anyone can relate to.

 

The owners of Hitch Studio say the best selling items among the millennial demographic (defined as those ages 18-34) are agenda/planners, notepads, Kate Spade stationery and journals. All of these encourage the age-old activity of putting pen to paper. In an age where it’s more common to post “Happy Birthday” on someone’s Facebook timeline, I’d like to join this fascination with writing actual letters, notes and birthday cards.

A freelance writer, Aja Frost from The Muse, wrote an amazing article that says everything that we believe. She challenged herself to send a hand-written letter to other professionals. Each letter depended on the person and what she was writing about – the only rule she made was that the letter would not include any requests. She had written to a PR representative, her mentor and to another writer. The responses she received were extremely encouraging! Instead of trying to mooch off of writing these letters she used them to further her career in a positive way that didn’t take a lot of effort. Just putting the pen to the paper. The first letter helped her pass along her resumé, the second letter has now created a regular tradition with the use of Snail Mail, and the third letter helped her get into contact with other editors of websites.

“Sending someone a hand-written letter shows effort and gratitude. If you don’t have a request, it turns out it’s a gesture people really want to reward you for.” Aja said. We know millennial’s are doing anything they can do to stand out among a crowd. Even though we are in the digital age, many Millennials are still appreciating what is considered old, and are now making it new – with our own spin on it.

It’s about the experience for the consumer and the person on the receiving end, and that is why millennials love independent and locally-owned stores like Hitch Studio. As Daniel Post Senning, of the Emily Post Institute said, “In an increasingly casual and information-driven world, the opportunities for distinction are still there. Figuring out a way to make a message special will never go out of fashion.” At Hitch Studio, our goal is giving our customers an unforgettable experience. Whether you’ve been writing for years… or just getting started, we want you to think of us as your go-to place for special life-moments and we want to be a part of them with you.

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As a Millennial, I’d like to start some new hashtags: #moresnailmail, #pentopaper, #lovegettingmail, #journaling and #writinglettersiscool
Because who doesn’t love getting things in the mail?! It never goes out of style, no matter your age.

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Stop into Hitch to see our wide collection of greeting cards. Everything from birthday to congrats, sympathy to funny, and wedding to divorce. We have a card for anything…and anyone.

 

p.s. It is wedding season! Need help with what to write in your card to the happy couple? Read this blog about “28 sweet things to write in a wedding card.”

1 Comment

  1. Carrie Jones on October 1, 2016 at 4:00 am

    I absolutely love this! I agree too, I’ve been craving pen to paper and vintage stationary as a form of self expression..I’ve become obsessed with Flow Magazine as well. Good thoughts!

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