Bold New Colors & Unique Textures: The Reinvention of CLASSIC Papers


Colors and textures and tools, oh my! The CLASSIC Papers portfolio has just undergone the biggest refresh in the brand’s 55-year history. To properly show off the newly revamped, best-selling collection of fine printing papers on the market, and the addition of eight fresh colors and two touch-worthy textures, Neenah has released new swatchbooks and a new promotion.

Neenah collaborated with DC-based Design Army on the development of the new items, the portfolio’s reorganization, and the new sample tools. Take a quick, behind-the-scenes look at the process, from developing the new colors to the art direction for the new “Think CLASSIC Papers” promotion

The new promotion was designed to create a sense of wonder around the new color palette for the line. Pum Lefebure, Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Design Army says, “The concept for the promotion was inspired by surrealism. Rather than use only stock photography in the book, we wanted to create images that are immediately recognized as representing the Neenah brand. Images that make you look twice. Classic images.



“We wanted to showcase the paper colors in very artful, inspiring ways so for each of the photographs that we art directed, we used only the new colors from the line for everything in the photos — the set, the makeup, the costuming.”


New Colors!
New Imperial Red is a color that refuses to be ignored; Lefebure says it was inspired by a trip to Beijing. “I remember walking into the Forbidden City and seeing this bold, gorgeous red hue. That red was ingrained in my mind. I wanted to bring that memorable color to this collection.”


The powerful new Cobalt is a punchy-yet-sophisticated color; one that’s often seen trending in fashion, yet still considered a classic.


New Bare White is poised to be a favorite for designers and photographers; its soft, elegant shade is perfect for projects that need to showcase photography. This addition rounds out the CLASSIC collection of six beautiful whites.

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Military and Aubergine are complex, chic neutrals that coordinate well together and are designed to enhance whites or any colors they’re combined with.


And the color Chambray was selected because, like denim, this universal, versatile color never goes out of style.


In total there are eight new colors designed to ignite and inspire: Imperial Red, Cool Gray, Cadet Gray, Bare White, Cobalt, Military, Chambray and Aubergine. “The palette we’ve created is meant to last. We worked to make sure the colors we added work alone and as a group, and that they will withstand the test of time,” says Neenah Senior Brand Manager Kathy Kemps.


New Textures!
Neenah didn’t stop at colors for this brand refresh. CLASSIC Papers are known for their unique textures like CLASSIC Stipple and CLASSIC COLUMNS. Yet Neenah felt they had room to expand. Meet the new branded textures: CLASSIC Woodgrain and CLASSIC Techweave.


CLASSIC Woodgrain has all the charm of wood and none of the limitations. Kemps says, “This texture was developed specifically because designers asked for it. The wood grain pattern provides a subtle environmental or organic touch, something that’s very appealing to today’s marketing initiatives.”


CLASSIC Techweave is a sign of the times. “Technology is a big market today, and until now there wasn’t a texture that represented that niche. I see this texture being used for software and electronics clients,” says Lefebure.


Newly Reorganized Portfolio!
With the new additions, the CLASSIC Papers now offer 36 beautiful colors across nine brands. With a portfolio so robust, Neenah felt it was the right time to reorganize the collection. In a highly collaborative process, Neenah and Design Army arranged the collection in a way they believe most beneficial to designers and paper specifiers viewing the papers.

The simplified portfolio is presented in three swatchbooks: CLASSIC CREST, CLASSIC Linen, and CLASSIC Textures, which houses the branded textures CLASSIC Laid, CLASSIC COLUMNS, CLASSIC Stipple and the two new brands: CLASSIC Techweave and CLASSIC Woodgrain.

Says Kemps, “We have taken great care to develop and introduce a new portfolio based on what we’ve heard customers say they wanted from this brand of papers. The CLASSIC Papers portfolio has long been a designer’s go-to for premium sophistication. We expect these additions to help designers continue to do the work they do, in a fresh and inspired way.”

Get a free copy of the new CLASSIC Papers swatchbooks and the “Think CLASSIC Papers” promotion through your Neenah rep or your local merchant. Find a Neenah distributor here:

Enter to win one of 20 copies of the new “Think CLASSIC Papers” promotion right now! Hurry, contest ends April 19th!



CLASSIC CREST, CLASSIC Linen, CLASSIC Laid, and CLASSIC COLUMNS, CLASSIC Stipple, CLASSIC Woodgrain, CLASSIC Techweave and CLASSIC Textures are all registered trademarks of Neenah.






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