Trend Watch | Lattices, Honeycombs, and Hexagons

I’m especially excited to share today’s trendwatch topic with you because, at its core, it’s all about pattern, geometry, and mathematics, and being an engineer (as well as a scrapbooker) those things definitely appeal to me. What, exactly, am I so enthralled with? Lattices!

The Oxford English Dictionary gives this definition for the word:

lattice (lat·tice)


  1. a structure consisting of strips of wood or metal crossed and fastened together with square or diamond-shaped spaces left between, used typically as a screen or fence or as a support for climbing plants.
  2. an interlaced structure or pattern resembling this
  3. Physics a regular repeated three-dimensional arrangement of atoms, ions, or molecules in a metal or other crystalline solid.

For the sake of conversation (and simplicity, since I’m not really up for writing an article on structural physics today), we’re going to restrict the scrapbooking definition of a lattice to the first two entries as we take a tour of some of the newest and hottest supplies that feature this versatile pattern.

Straight-line lattices are perhaps the first image that comes to mind when you hear the word, but in the scrapbooking world that type of structure is actually the most basic and least common form of the pattern. That doesn’t make it any less lovely, though! Pink Paislee’s “Clam Bake” print from the Nantucket line (which is perhaps the perfect poster child for the lattice trend as a whole) features a lattice as a “B” side (back side) print.

The “Frolic” print from Studio Calico’s Autumn Press line features a slightly more complex (but still linear) lattice, also as the back of the paper print.

Webster’s Pages and Authentique also feature straight-line lattices as B-side prints – Webster’s on the “Postcards to Santa” sheet from Botanical Christmas, and Authentique with “Jaunt” from Journey – and add interest with small bits of embellishment at the vertices.

Crate Paper’s “Mint” from their new Peppermint collection shakes up the linear lattice by adding small curves to the larger lines while retaining the overall straight-line feel of the pattern.

Lattices, though, are not always straight and in fact come in a huge array of styles and patterns. I mentioned earlier that Pink Paislee’s Nantucket was the poster child for lattice prints, and here they are again displaying a much more elaborate version of the structure in the “Crabcakes” print. The line’s coordinating cardstock pack from Core’dinations also features the same intricate lattice pattern along with a honeycomb print – another variant that we’ll explore in-depth shortly.

Pink Paislee’s “Mistables” paper line is also full of lattice prints – everything from ornate to honeycombs to quatrefoils (another sub-category we’ll be exploring) is represented here.

The quatrefoil lattice is a special category of pattern that combines a series of four-lobed shapes into an integrated structure. Quatrefoils come in many varieties – some more square, some with more or less overlap than others – and are popping up in paper lines of many different styles and themes.

Echo Park’s Victoria Garden line features two prints – “Sunshine” and “Rose Garden” – with quatrefoil lattice patterns gracing their B-sides.

Hambly introduced a line of screen printed papers and overlays called “Lattice” at CHA Summer 2011 featuring a quatrefoil pattern.

My Mind’s Eye’s Lost and Found 2 collection includes a quatrefoil pattern (found in the “Everything Dry Goods” print from the Rosy line) that’s a bit more square than some of the specimens we’ve looked at so far. They’ve also taken the pattern a step further and added an outline color to the original pattern, giving it more dimension.

Lily Bee’s lovely Memorandum line also sports a two-toned quatrefoil outline on its “9 to 5″ print.

The new Homestead collection from SEI features quatrefoils not only as a B-side to the “Cedar Chest” print, but also as a pattern in their 12×12 pad of companion papers for the line.

Two of Teresa Collins’ new lines from CHA Summer 2011 also feature quatrefoils on the backs of a paper sheet – “Geometric” from the World Traveler collection and “Words” from Christmas Home.

Hexagonal lattices, or honeycombs, are another extremely popular pattern in the scrapbooking industry right now. Echo Park reflects this trend in two very different paper collections, showing its versatility. The bright and colorful “Country Drive” collection uses a hexagonal lattice on the hive-themed “Bees’ Knees” print, while the very traditional Christmas line, Seasons’ Greetings, uses a reduced-scale honeycomb with an embellishment in the center on its “Tree Skirt” pattern.

October Afternoon further proves the versatility of the hexagon by including them on the “Hong Kong” print from the Boarding Pass line.

Studio Calico is also no stranger to the honeycomb. The “Betsy” sheet from their Countryside collection was introduced at the 2011 Winter CHA, and Memoir (released at CHA Summer 2011) varies the hexagonal lattice in the “Flower Bed” print by removing some of the interior lines of the lattice, thus combining the shapes into flowers.

Pink Paislee is once again right on trend with the Nantucket line’s hexagonal Chipboard Tiles.

Lattices can also be found in non-consumable papercrafting products, such as the Petite and Tile printing press plates for Lifestyle Crafts’ L Letterpress set

Memory Box has a wood-mounted rubber stamp featuring an intricate lattice pattern.

Digital scrapbookers definitely aren’t left out of the lattice trend! “The Open Road” kit from Paislee Press at Oscraps includes a variety of quatrefoil patterns.

Crystal Wilkerson of Creativity By Crystal took it a step further by creating an entire pack of nothing but quatrefoil papers!

The Lucious [sic] paper pack from Maplebrook Studios at Designer Digitals features some very complex lattice patterns, while Mindy Terasawa’s HoneyComb paper pack sports a variety of solid colored, distressed honeycomb patterns.

Sara Schmutz recently released her new Nursery Rhymes kit at Design House Digital and included a pair of honeycomb papers in the mix.

Honeycomb patterns in particular lend themselves to a variety of options for creatively using your paper on layouts. For example, when making the layout below I opted to use only a strip and a small piece of the “Hong Kong” paper from October Afternoon’s Boarding Pass line, then carefully cut along the edges of those pieces to make the honeycomb pattern stand out a little more.

Supplies | Patterned Paper: October Afternoon “Boarding Pass” (TokyoHong KongBerlinNew YorkVenice); ButtonsPapertrey Ink;Metal Accent: Making Memories (Vintage Findings); Brads: My Mind’s Eye (Stella and Rose Hazel “Lovely” Decorative Brads); Letter Stickers: Sassafras (Woodgrain); Journaling Sticker: October Afternoon (“Seaside” Word Stickers); Date Stamp: Office Supply; Ink: Tsukineko Staz-On (Jet Black)

Hexagon patterns are also easy to cut apart and use individually as embellishments since all of the dividing lines are already printed – it’s like having a cutting guide built right into your paper!!

Lattice prints are quickly becoming as common as dots and stripes in paper lines. They give scrapbookers a more intricate and often more appealing option to use when a semi-solid coordinating print is needed, and they lend visual interest to projects without calling all the attention to themselves. Be on the lookout for more lattice prints to be released in the future – I think this trend is here to stay!

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4 Responses to Trend Watch | Lattices, Honeycombs, and Hexagons

  1. Barb T September 2, 2011 at 1:21 pm #

    I shall never simply think of lattice as the structure I used in my garden for my clematis. Who knew so many different shapes are a lattice? Loving it!

  2. Gab September 3, 2011 at 5:36 am #

    Great article Melissa. And I love your LO using the Boarding Pass line, especially how you cut into the lattice papers

  3. Tammy D September 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm #

    Great article! I’ve been so attracted to lattice and quatrefoil lately – now I understand it comes from the number crucher analyst in me!

  4. Marcia Deignan September 14, 2011 at 6:48 am #

    Great article!

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