PaperTalk is one of my favourite, favourite places in Beijing. Nestled in Fangjia Hutong (方家胡同), this adorable shop specializes in paper products and specialty papers from all around the world. It is all very fitting considering that paper was a Chinese invention.
Proprietor Haiyi is passionate about paper, and PaperTalk is a perfect platform for her to share that passion with others. Not only is paper the star of the show here, the shop itself is a serene and whimsical place bursting with warmth and charm, inside and out. For instance, in the summer, the small terrace also serves as a container garden for herbs and flowers. I admit to being easily seduced by just about any store with a container garden outside!
A bust of Chairman Mao, wearing a red scarf in the style of the Young Pioneers, reigns over this little corner.
Beautifully designed notebooks.
Paper from Korea, Japan, Thailand, Tibet, and of course, China, is used to make bags and other products.
Paper from Korea.
Haiyi also creates custom paper products, particularly for weddings. When I visited her, she was busy making lucky draw boxes for the many company Chinese New Year parties that are going on this time of year.
Handmade paper bags.
My main reason for going to Paper Talk is to pick up a copy of my favourite magazine, Little Thing. If you can read Chinese, and you are a young woman who loves indie, DIY, and the Etsy school of design-in other words, if you are me–then you’ll also love this magazine.
Every few weeks, I savour the experience of tripping down Fangjia Hutong, going to PaperTalk, chatting with Haiyi, and then picking up the latest issue of Little Thing. Sure, I could subscribe to the magazine and get it delivered to my mailbox, but it just wouldn’t be the same. PaperTalk is one of the few places in Beijing where you can pick it up, and it is so popular that Haiyi maintains a mobile phone list to notify readers when a new issue comes in.
Little Thing at PaperTalk.
If you’re feeling thirsty after contemplating which adorable notebook to buy or after perusing Little Thing, PaperTalk also serves coffee and a small selection of drinks.
Visit PaperTalk at:
12 Fangjia Hutong
Blog (Chinese only)
More beautiful notebooks on sale.