Not Your Average Chick

Stationery Enthusiast & Mental Wellness Advocate

NYAC-Comprehensive Guide to Stationery

Hey Chicks!

Imagine if you will.  An idea popping into your head. One that outweighs any other thoughts that may be going on.  You dive in full force with an eagerness to absorb all of the knowledge that is possible.  You begin with the terms that define this newfound idea.  Never had you imagined the depth in which a simple idea can take you. Now realize that person is me.  Thumbing vigorously through the internet referencing sources to bring you all the information you could need to form a solid understanding of the idea that I LOVEStationery.

When I made the decision to begin a creative business that is defined by stationery, I had no clue the extent of proper terminology that I would need to define.  I will break up the post into segments for easier referencing.  This will be the first in a series of post documenting the extensive terminology of stationery.

What is stationery?

Stationery is defined by Wikipedia as a mass noun referring to commercially manufactured writing materials, including cut paper, envelopes, writing implements, continuous form paper and other office supplies.  Stationery is intrinsically linked to paper and the process of written, personalized communication.


Paper Sizing

Paper sizes are measured on a standard paper size scale.  International standard (ISO) specifies paper sizes used in most countries except for the U.S. and Canada which size their own sizing standard.

There are a lot of mathematical formulas behind A, B, and C paper sizes but the common feature is that any successive paper size measurement is determined by halving the dimensions of the preceding one.

Notebook Paper Size A Series

A3 11.7 X 16.5 inches

A4 8.3 X 11.7 inches

A5 5.8 X 8.3 inches

A6 4.1 X 5.8 inches

A7 2.9 X 4.1 inches

Examples of commonly printed items are:

postcards A6

flyer A5

newsletter A4

The larger the number, the smaller the paper size.

Notebook Paper Size B Series

B5 6.9 X 9.8

B6 4.9 X 6.9

B7 3.5 X 4.9

Paper Weight (GSM)

Grams per meter squared (GSM) refers to the paper’s weight, its thickness.  Generally the thicker/heavier the paper, the better its quality.  It has less tendency to bleed through or feather when using wet ink pens, ie. fountain pens.  I personally use sharpie pens which also bleed through but with a thicker stock paper, it does not.

Types of Paper

  1. Text paper (office paper)lightweight 20lbs budget-friendly, medium 22-24lbs, heavy 28-32lbs pen will not bleed through
  2. Bristol ~ lightest cardstock, most commonly used, 100lb for card making projects
  3. Index ~ sturdier cardstock, smoother than Bristol
  4. Cover ~ much thicker, invitations, cards

Paper Finish

  1. Coated
  2. Uncoated

Both uncoated and coated papers can have a polished finish.  The polished types are gloss, semi-gloss, silk, and matte.

7 Catagories of Paper

  1. Printing paper
  2. Writing paper
  3. Wrapping paper
  4. Blotting paper
  5. Drawing paper
  6. Handmade papers
  7. Specialty paper

Paper has a history that can be traced back to the 2nd-century BCE in China.  The use of paper has a large impact on the environment in terms of trash and deforestation.  The use and production of recycled paper are more prevalent today because of environmental factors.

This post was created as a reference page.  Stay tuned for future post detailing and defining other stationery terms.

Interested in other NYAC content?

All For the Love of Stationery

Stepping Up My Stationery Game

*information source: Wikipedia

*post accessible from the front page as a sticky note


4 thoughts on “A Comprehensive Guide to Stationery

  1. So interesting, had no idea on all these terminologies. Great information!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome 😊🙏🏽


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