powder to stone paper Karst journals - header

Paper out of Stones

Stone paper: re-defining the way paper is made

Scrolling Instagram, I stumbled across a very well-made photo of a notebook. The way it was carefully laid out on the table, lining up with other notebooks, made me stop long enough to read the term “stone paper”.

Stone paper???

What new marketing term is this?


After quick research on the Karst home page, I learned that it isn’t just a weird term for a new paper finish or similar. This paper indeed is made from stone.

“Our paper is 100% tree-free” they write.

It’s also not just a crazy new material for the sole reason of product differentiation, but it actually is an eco-friendly alternative to traditional paper. It even brings new material properties which are beneficial for our daily use.

Stone paper vs. traditional paper

Stone paper questions the standard of how paper is made.

For hundreds of years, paper was made from plant fibers. First from cloth and since the industrial age from wood pulp. Industrial advancements changed the production scale and efficiency a lot. However, the process itself as well as the material stayed. For good reasons: It simply works well – for production and use – and is affordable. Wood is available all over the world and production can be scaled. However, with the global deforestation problem, wood is no longer abundant, and it’s used for many other things. Also, to produce paper, a lot of water is needed, and the raw material must be treated with acid and bleach to become white.

paper manufacturing history

Stone paper challenges all of that. It is made from recycled calcium carbonate, a material used in concrete. It is one of the most abundant minerals on the planet. Recycled from concrete or mined, the stones are ground up to powder. The chalk-like powder is then bound with a resin from recycled plastic and, with a lot of heat and pressure, stretched and pressed to a thin sheet. according to stone paper manufacturers, the material degrades under sunlight, leaving only calcium carbonate dust behind, or can be recycled.


Stone paper is so new and innovative that it doesn’t fit the definition of paper – that paper is made from wood fibers.

How was stone paper discovered?

“Why are we still using paper-making practices that were cutting edge in the 16th century? Why does paper need to be made out of trees? Why can’t journals be waterproof?”



The cardboard-like material out of calcium carbonate and resin was developed and used for food packaging because of its water-resistant property. The Karst founders came across this food packaging and saw the potential of the new material. They made it thinner and were the first to produce stationery products – notebooks to be precise – from stone paper in 2017.



A notebook that is made for our hectic day-to-day

On top of the sustainability bonus, stone paper is waterproof and hard to tear. Spilling your coffee over it? Accidentally placing a dripping water bottle next to it in your backpack? Wipe it off and let it dry; no wavy pages. Also, the pages don’t bleed through, a big plus for all us marker and brush pen users 🙂


For more details on material properties, read the full Karst stone paper journal review.


Karst stonepaper waterproof journal - yes, it's 100% waterproof!


An eco-friendly alternative to traditional paper

Sustainability impact:

The material and its production process will save the following if it was to replace traditional paper large-scale:

  • 46% less oil
  • 62 to 70% less  CO2
  • 99.2% less water
  • 100% less wood


Inspirational for all of us who like to make an impact

Karst doesn’t only know how to make a new kind of paper, they also understand how to connect to their customers: The home page reads like a motivation book. All over the pages, they have quotes that fit as well to their notebook as they fit their target audience; people who challenge the status quo, people who would like to leave an impact:

Take note today, shape tomorrow
The future’s going to be written by those who get creative
We wrote our own story. Write yours

An inspiring way of marketing!


Karst journal and notebooks

 Final thoughts

Even in established industries, innovation is possible

Stone paper might be a surprising innovation, a product that no one was waiting for. But it shows that even in well-established industries, innovation is possible and can change a product at its core.


Sustainability – Too good to be true?

Regarding the sustainability impact, I’m not expert enough to evaluate if all claims from manufacturers are as good as they sound or if there are other problems with the new manufacturing process and ingredients used that are not mentioned.

The only odd ingredient to me is the resin.

Usually, composite materials with a synthetic resin are problematic since the resin prevents the material from being bio-degradable: Plastic degrades extremely slowly and leaves micro-plastic behind. Particles we today know are harmful.

However, under certain conditions, at least the Karst product is described as being photo-degradable (degrades when exposed to sunlight).

I’m curious if a framed stone paper poster in my house would turn to dust after a few years or if only complex industrial recycling could degrade the sheet.

And if industrial recycling was needed, how hard is it to close the recycling cycle in practiceCan everyone just hand their notebook in with their local recycling center and they will know what to do with it?

Also, what happens if people misunderstand the instructions and throw a stone paper notebook into the compost?


A risk: To recycle stone paper like normal paper

As of today, stone paper is mainly used for notebooks and packaging (packaging cardboard, paper, and labels).

While packaging is typically trashed anyway, for stone paper, which is used like usual paper, the risk is high that people would throw it away like usual paper and put it into paper recycling.

This risk becomes larger when stone paper is not only used by a dedicated minority of trained users but large-scale:

I have three notebooks out of stone paper. I made the conscious decision to try notebooks made from this new kind of paper and will remember to put them in the trash if I don’t keep them to remember the content anyways.

But if stone paper was to replace normal printing paper all over offices and businesses, how would someone know that the printout they received from someone is on stone paper and therefore can NOT be recycled with normal paper?


Let’s hope that stone paper isn’t produced as printing paper for broad use.

At least not before the answer is found and an easy-to-use recycling process is in place 🙂

diamonds spacer-2

Stone Paper

Feb 4, 2022 | LIFESTYLE

Last update: March 18, 2022


by Corinne

by Corinne

Karst stonepaper review


Karst stonepaper journal review

Where I got my notebooks from

FYI: All products described in my Karst articles I have bought myself. 

Sources and further links

diamonds spacer-2