WINNER ‘Progress toward circularity’ Marie Claire Sustainability Awards 2023

Interview with Rachel Filmer of Creativism

Paper cutting can be the most rewarding craft when you have the right tools and materials at your disposal. To learn more about paper cutting, we interviewed Rachel Filmer of Creativism about how she came up with her kits that offer everything you need to fall in love with this practice.

Discover Creativism's incredible kits that allow you to create the most intricate designs from paper, including maps and text.

Rachel's completed paper cuts can also be found under the name Cut Scenes.

hand cutting out paper

How did you first get into paper cutting?

I developed some health issues and thought some crafting would be therapeutic. Before that, I had never done anything remotely creative, but within a year I learned several crafts. Paper cutting was my favourite as it was inexpensive, versatile and needed minimal space and tools. 

How did you start your journey towards establishing Creativism?

Initially, I was just selling my paper cuts, but I would always get so many questions asking for tips, advice on tools and materials, etc. It also was such a pain having to buy all the things I needed from multiple places, so I decided to put it all together in one place. I bought a couple of paper cutting kits when I started but the instructions were minimal, the supplies weren’t the best quality, and the designs didn’t really seem to build skills from a beginner level. I decided to tackle these things with my own kits.

What inspired you to start Creativism?

I found crafting so therapeutic but I really struggled to find good quality kits and materials when I was learning. I decided I wanted to make crafting more accessible, and I wanted to include only the same tools and materials that I would use myself. I was also tired of basic instructions in kits, so I decided I would provide really detailed guides that go beyond the basics - I want people who buy my kits to discover something new that they love doing and will want to keep doing. I have plans to extend to other crafts too.

paper cutting that's more than halfway complete, on a drafting table

What are your favourite materials to work with?

90% of success with paper cutting is down to the tools and materials. Since I started nearly ten years ago, I’ve tried hundreds of types of paper - I now use one specific type, which has a high cotton content and a beautiful textured finish, for all my pieces. This is the same paper I use in my kits. I still try new things but always come back to this. 

Do you have a favourite work you’ve made to date?

This map of London is probably my favourite work to date. It was the first really challenging map I tried and gave me the confidence to take it further. 

paper cutting of a map of London

What makes Creativism different?

My kits are designed for longevity. The tools will last years, and the guides will take you far beyond the designs in the kit. My aim is to really encourage beginners to find a new passion, and keep going with it.  

What is the next project that you’re currently working on?

I try to challenge myself with each new piece, so I’m often working on something that seems completely impossible at first… and then when it’s done I shoot for something more difficult. The map of Tokyo I’m working on now is easily the most difficult design I’ve ever done but I love it. I already have my next big piece designed and ready to go. 

paper cutting at desk with a magnifying glass

What do you do in your spare time? 

I have twins so I don’t get much spare time! If I have spare time, I’m making something - knitting, crochet, cross-stitch, baking or paper cutting, usually while watching Netflix!

What is some advice you have for aspiring makers?

You can learn to do anything with enough practice. Things that seem impossible at first will be second nature after you put in the work. You don’t need innate talent - perseverance is more important. Pick something you love and it won’t feel like work at all.

Ready to start doing some incredible paper cuttings with Rachel's intricate and detailed kits? Buy one for yourself or for the fellow creatives in your life today.