Paper Punk Introduces, The Young and The Dressless

We are so excited to announce the fun and creative soap opera that is, The Young and the Dressless. The soap will air on Paper Punk social channels bi-weekly, twice a month, and run through until mid September.

We tell the story of The Young and the Dressless all while using the Color + Build Fashion Designer kits as well as some aspects of other kits. We use the paper toy as a fun and creative way to tell a story about a young girl going after her dreams.

Without giving too much away, here’s a sneak peak of what the story entails.

Meet the stars of the show, Alexandra Zang and Brad Fitt.



Alexandra Zang is a 20-something year old who moves from her small town to New York City. She studied fashion design in college and is currently designing her own clothing line to showcase at various fashion shows. Her dream is to attend New York Fashion Week in September as a new designer.

Brad Fitt is a famous Rockstar. He is the lead singer of the Rolling Bones, which is a popular rock band who plays at shows across North America. He and his band have a big summer tour coming up!


The Young and the Dressless is a story about persevering against all odds and going after your dreams, no matter how big they may seem. It’s about romance, friendship, and all of the hardships along the way. Stay with us throughout the summer to watch how all the drama unfolds!

If you haven’t had the chance to watch, catch up now by watching the first two episodes below! Stay tuned for Episode 3 airing May 26th. #TheYoungAndTheDressless #MakeSomething

Episode 1: 

Alexandra packs her designs and sketches and prepares to leave her loving parents and small town behind. She says goodbye and takes off to the airport for her flight to the Big Apple.



Episode 2: 

Alexandra is now living in NYC, continuing her sketches and designs. Her good friend Emma, who lives in the city, comes over and offers to take Alex out to a local rock concert. While standing in line outside the concert, Emma notices the star of the popular rock band Brad Fitt from The Rolling Bones, in line with his buddy Fabio, another member of the group. Alexandra takes interest in him from afar. The rest is to be continued…

May 23, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne

How To Make STEM Learning Fun

With just under two weeks left to the unofficial launch of summer (Memorial Day) and school being out in just over a month, you may be wondering how to make sure the kids make the most out of their summer and not get too rusty upstairs. We’ve got three tips to help you make STEM learning this summer fun!

 Take a Field Trip

via GIPHY

 

There are plenty of cool places around town that are perfect learning opportunities for children. A trip to the local zoo or botanical garden puts the “S” in STEM and is a great way for children to connect with plants, nature, and animals. Getting kids acquainted with concepts like sustainability and the importance of our ecosystem will never be easier. Cultivate their curiosity by exposing them to different environments and activities.

STEM Activities from Home

In addition to going out, there are plenty of activities you can do at home like gardening and cooking. 

Gardening is a great way to help teach children about plants, insects AND nutrition. You could also do something as simple as grabbing something from your pantry and direct all the components and processes that had to go into making that food product. You can easily do that with other objects all around the house. Inspire kids to uncover the context of the built world they live in by asking them questions.

Baking and cooking also provides a way to teach your children STEM related concepts on the sly. Calculating measurements to make that delicious summer treat is good for the brain and sure to provide some joy for everyone. Homemade popsicles anyone? 

Let’s Use Our Hands  

Toys and games can help develop an appreciation for science, the arts, strategic and mind-stimulating activities, and spending time with family and friends. Although school will be out, play doesn’t have to end!

Brands like K’Nex and our very own Paper Punk, provide toys/activities that both excite and educate kids without them even knowing. 

Remember, learning is as fun as you make it! We challenge you to come up with more ways to make STEM learning fun. Let us know how you do by tagging us @PaperPunk.

ICYMI: Our Color + Build kits have been featured in the Toy Insider Spring & Summer Gift Guide.

Check out the gift guide to find other cool STEM toys, like Paper Punk, that will keep the kids entertained for hours on end!

The Importance of the letter “A”

Ever wonder what the “A” in STEAM education stands for?

No, it is not a typo.  While many have all heard of STEM education before, STEAM education incorporates an additional new, very important letter, and a very important one to say the least.  — Give me an “A”! What’s that stand for?! ART & DESIGN.
                                  
STEAM education is defined as:

S: SCIENCES

T
: TECHNOLOGY

E
: ENGINEERING 

A: ART & DESIGN

M: MATHEMATICS

             


PAPER PUNK is an arts and crafts toy that encapsulates STEAM education into its play interface. The various kits in the collection, including the Classic, Urban Fold, and Color + Build kits, provide endless imaginative and creative play for humans of all ages. With a few simple folds, colorful 2D flat shapes transform into bold 3D geometric pieces to create spectacular looking paper toys and art forms. Aspects of dimensional thinking, rapid prototyping, engineering, art/design, and geometry are packed into our eye-catching kits.

  

Created by Stanford Design School professor--and mother—Grace Hawthorne, the activity kits are designed to be the antidote to our digitally dominated world.

Through Grace’s research and experience, she has discovered that YES creativity can be taught, and through creativity training you can actually rewire your brain. 

In a world overly bombarded by the use of technology, we here at Paper Punk believe it’s important to put down your devices and exercise your mind by making things with your hands! So, what are you waiting for? Go on, #MakeSomething

May 09, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne

The Best & Most Creative Paper Toy Creations We Found on the Web

Paper Toys have long been a fascination to the world. Think back to when origami was a big fad. It’s not hard to see how popular paper toys have become, just check the internet. We’ve looked around the web and picked a few of our favorites. 


Old-School Polaroid Camera

How amazing is this old-school camera made out of paper!? This paper toy was created by Anna Trundle of ALTA Papercraft, who combines digital and handcrafted techniques into dimensional illustration.



Paper Fruit

Good enough to eat, am I right?! These juicy fruits make the perfect additions to your play kitchen or grocery stand. They will also make colorful decorations for kid’s rooms.

 

Architectural Paper Models

This masterpiece was created by an artist named Ingrid Siliakus. Making paper objects, she says, is a meditative process of cutting and folding the paper into different variations. And the result is extraordinary, a testament to what can be done with just one sheet of paper.

 

Graphic Paper Figures

One of our all time favorite paper toy artists is Shin Tanaka. He has famously taken street art and graffiti aesthetics to paper as his canvas. The geometry and graphic patterns and colors are a huge inspiration to Paper Punk. From first folding origami at the age of four to this collaborations with the likes of culture giants like Nike, Shin has helped fuel the paper toy mania to new heights.



Paper Blocks & Paper Dolls

Of course we can’t forget our very own creations. Our Paper Punk Color + Build Kits! These kits enable users to customize their very own 3D paper creations through folding and coloring. They also elevate the coloring craze with added dimensions, 3D construction, story-telling, and dream making. #MakeSomething


 

The Importance of Play for Adults

When you think of the idea of “play”, what comes to mind? Video games? Kids? Sports?

What mostly comes to mind when I think of play is children. Much like the picture above, I imagine kids running around with abandon chasing a ball outdoors or finding 100 new ways to engage with the empty box in the recycling bin. Rarely, does anyone ever envision an adult. Gone are the days when our biggest problem/concern was how fast we could eat our lunch in order to have more time to play. Even though play time and aging seem inversely related as we get older, the importance of it to our health and happiness remains the same.

Here is why having some play time is good for you:

It relieves stress.

You ever wonder why people recommend going to the gym to relieve stress? A little chemical called endorphins is released and actually causes you to feel good. Overriding pain and stress, endorphins are a happy chemical.

 

That same chemical reaction is released when you’re playing games. That feeling of euphoria when you score a goal, complete a hard level of a video game, or make someone pick up 20 cards in UNO is because of our new found friend – endorphins.

Improve brain function – Hello STEM toys!

Another reason why having some play time is important is because it helps improve your brain function. Activities like Paper Punk are meant for you to have fun and be as creative as you can, but what you may not know, is that you’re actually using your STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Art Mathematic) skills to do so.

By following the numerical pattern and folding each sheet, you end up creating a 3D geometric piece you didn’t even know was there. (Say hello to dimensional thinking skills and good old fashioned geometry!)

Classics like chess and Monopoly help improve your skills as well, but they may also lose you some friends. Not speaking from experience, of course.

Keep you feeling young and energetic.                         

Lastly, setting aside some time for play helps keep you young. Put down the anti-aging cream and pick up some board games.

 

We're believers in not only taking time out of your day for play, but also continuing to incorporate it into your everyday lives as you grow older.

In all things, #MakeSomething.

Spring Scavenger Hunt

Without a doubt, Spring is my favorite season. The weather, slowly but surely, gets warmer, birds start chirping, people start smiling, you actually don’t mind walking down the street to meet the new neighbors, etc. While there are various chores and essential things to do in the spring like gardening and pulling out the patio set, we’d recommend mixing it up with an outdoor scavenger hunt. Here are 3 tips to hosting an awesome Scavenger hunt.

Be the neighborhood hero.

You’re not the only one thinking about fun activities to do with your kids, so be the neighborhood hero and organize the hunt. Get other neighbors involved too— they’d be happy to help you, plus having more space to hide clues and more kids to join in the fun will make your scavenger hunt a blast.

Host Paper Punk kit building party.

It’s not a hunt if there’s no treasure, right? Make the pot of gold a pile of Paper Punk kits and the scavenger hunt with a group kit building party, including yummy snacks. Not only will it serve as a great way to get to know the neighborhood kids, it’s also a good way to interact with their parents (your neighbors). The good news is that this party isn’t age restrictive as the kits are meant for anyone 6+, so there is no excuse why everybody can’t join in the fun and #MakeSomething too.

Want to make your scavenger hunt even more fun?

Use a theme.

Most people love a good themed party! Think of a theme for your scavenger hunt and make up some clues to fit. Now that your Easter egg hunts are over, what theme will you come up with? Missing treasure, town exploring, animals? There are a lot of great lists online to get you started with some great idea. 

Bring your animal themed hunt to life using only our animal themed kits, Horn (Unicorn), Ape, Kitty, and Pup to liven up the party. Hide made animal Paper Punks as wild card finds or to create your own domestic safari!

Cute DIY projects to keep you busy for Easter

Easter is just around the corner and there are so many fun arts and crafts ideas to get you and the kids in the mood to #MakeSomething!

We know this time of the year can be a busy one with family and friends, but why not incorporate some creativity in the mix to keep things interesting.

Here are some cute DIY project ideas everyone can participate in!

1) Paper Flowers

Paper flowers are likely to be the most popular trend when it comes to DIY arts and crafts for spring and it’s not hard to see why. You can make beautiful flowers of any shape or color and showcase them in an old vase.  The best part, you’ll have them for life!

2) Painting With Water Colors

Since it’s spring, the entire family can enjoy this art and craft in any way, shape, or form because there are so many beautiful things to paint and get creative with. Not to mention, it’s easy, fun, and the water-based paint wont damage furniture or clothes (something parents will appreciate!)


3) Construction Paper Easter Eggs

Construction paper crafts are simple and something kids will be familiar with. The great thing is that construction paper is versatile as there are so many colors to choose from! Scissors and glue are the best friends of this special craft. How cute are these Easter eggs!?

4) Paper Plate Bunnies

Make paper plate bunny rabbits for an Easter craft! Check your kitchen cabinets for some good old paper plates and use that imagination. This adorable rabbit craft uses other materials as well such as googly eyes, cotton balls, and pipe cleaners.

5) Building & Coloring with Paper Punk Color + Build Kits

Paper Punk’s Color + Build Graffiti Kit is a great way to get the mind flowing with positivity and things that make us happy like rainbows, hearts, and smiley face emojis. BONUS: you can add candy and treats in the Graffiti Blocks for even more happiness! The Fashion Designer Kit can inspire your little fashionistas to make cute outfits for spring through imaginative storytelling!

We hope you take the time this Easter to incorporate these fun art and craft activities into your weekend. We’re positive you and your family will not only enjoy the end results but enjoy the quality time spent with one another over the holiday season.

Happy Easter Paper Punk Fans!

April 11, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne

How Color Affects Your Mood

Do you remember mood rings? Put one on and it would change colors according to your mood?

In the 70’s, they were a huge fad and made a comeback in the late 90’s/early 2000’s and for some reason, just won’t seem to go away. Why? In short, we think it’s because color really matters and by association, it does affect your mood.

Color touches literally every aspect of our lives – from fashion:

down to our mood (hello, mood rings!).

Color psychology is the study of hues as a determinant of human behavior and is tasked with the job of figuring out why we feel the way we do when it pertains to certain colors. Although the study is fairly new, what we know is that typically, colors in the red spectrum (red, orange and yellow) are known as warm colors and can evoke feelings anywhere from warmth and comfort to feelings of anger and hostility. While colors in the blue spectrum (blue, purple and green) evoke feelings anywhere from calmness to sadness.

Why does this matter? Simply put:

We LOVE color and there’s nothing like adding a little color to brighten your day. Whether it be a red a dress here or a blue top there, we love color.

Tell us what color is your favorite by tagging us @paperpunk and check out our Color + Build kits at www.paperpunk.com or at your local Target and get your coloring fix on. Trust us, you’ll thank us later. #MakeSomething

April 04, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne

3 Ways Good Design Makes For a Happier World

When you really think about it, design in the form of objects are all around us. Whether at home, at work, or during leisure time, objects fill our lives from the moment we wake up to the moment we fall asleep.

It’s been said that well-designed everyday objects can have a positive impact on the way we feel; that good design can make us feel happy and can inspire us to be more creative.

Here are 3 ways good design makes for a happy world and an even happier you!

1) Good design is: Functional & Simple

The simpler the utility the better. It’s actually really challenging to create something that holds high function and appears simple in design. As our design heroes, Charles and Ray Eames, have said, "The details are not the details. The details make the product.”

Well-designed objects trigger positive emotions like calmness and contentment, reducing negative feelings like anger and annoyance because the user experience is seamless, easy and elegant.

2) Good design is: Aesthetically Pleasing

Well-designed objects that are pleasing to the eye create positive emotions in us. After all, who doesn’t love some good eye candy? It’s obvious that beautiful things can boost our mood, making us happier people. Think about when you’re walking by some incredible art and the alchemy of colors and shapes of it changes your day for the better. We tend to appreciate things more that give us a spark of excitement or give us pleasure.

3) Good design can: Trigger Memories

In most cases, a good design can evoke positive emotions in you if you’re able to connect a memory with it. It has the ability to restore old memories, creating a kind of nostalgic feeling when around it.

What we love about Paper Punk is that paper toys are easy to build making them functional and simple. The various colors make each creation beautiful and once you’re finished building, you can keep your creations and reminisce the time you spent with loved ones to make them.

Design truly is all around us and it’s important to embrace it! #MakeSomething

March 30, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne

International Day of Happiness

Yesterday, we celebrated International Day of Happiness by asking you (and we did it ourselves) to Paper Punk It Forward and see for yourself – it was awesome. #PaperPunkItForward.

While we were reading some of your submissions, we couldn’t help but find ourselves really digging deep into what happiness is and when were we happiest.  So, we went out and asked a couple of people when they were most happy and here’s what they had to say:

“When I’m hanging out with friends. We get to talk and share stories about our life. Relax. And just spending time with people who you care about is a great experience.” – Kelly

“When I’m at home with my husband and puppy. They’re the love of my life.” – Vanita

“Marathoning Netflix shows and ordering takeout with my husband.” – Jill

“I’m happiest when I’m on an adventure. I love to experience new things and explore new opportunities. It’s really when I feel most alive.” - Amanda

We wanted to include a couple of submissions from our happiness campaign cause well, it made us pretty freaking happy:

I'm happiest helping people become their most creative self…especially making things with their hands!

What makes you happy?

Use our brand new Color+Build GRAFFITI Block kit to construct a positive message and pay your positive message forward for a chance to be featured in our virtual graffiti wall! By tagging us @PaperPunk and using the #PaperPunkItForward hashtag, you will have the chance to be part of our Paper Punk It Forward campaign.

March 21, 2017 by Grace Hawthorne