From its humble beginnings in 1980, when founder Nancy Jacobi started showing artists and bookbinders these novel papers from the trunk of her car, The Japanese Paper Place staff continue their commitment to the company's mission to encourage and promote creativity with quality Japanese papers.

Although we have a warehouse full of machine-made and decorative Japanese papers, our particular passion is for sharing Heritage Washi, a term coined by Nancy to describe traditional Japanese handmade papers, using Japanese-grown fibres and methods that have been practised continuously for over 1000 years.


In 1975, The Japanese Paper Place seed was planted in Nancy’s mind during her time teaching in Japan. Surrounded by exquisite papers, the likes of which she had never seen, Nancy imagined the creative power that could be unleashed by their availability back home in Canada. Beginning with visits to printmakers, bookbinders and specialty stores, she gathered the consensus she needed to start in earnest. 


In 1982, she opened The Japanese Paper Place retail store in Toronto to encourage and inspire artists and creative people to learn about the versatility of traditional Japanese papers. One by one, devotees for washi were born. 


As the company expanded, through the generosity of our supplier Moriki Paper Company first with Shinji and now Takao, Nancy travelled regularly to the papermaking villages in Japan, to learn about, and document the changes taking place in the craft. To support the declining number of makers committed to producing excellent washi, and the artists outside Japan who use them, the JPP has organized countless workshops and exhibitions, and given talks in France, South Africa, England, Cuba, Japan, Nunavut and throughout the US and Canada. The World Washi Summit in Toronto in 2008 gathered Japanese papermakers, artists and the public in a month-long celebration of the potential of washi.

Nancy teaching English in Japan, 1975

First retail store on Queen West, Toronto

Nancy with Osaki papermaking family

Since then, a worldwide distribution network has grown to include art supply and museum stores, printmaking and conservation studios, packaging and bookbinding companies, amongst others.


Today we offer several thousand decorative and art papers in sheets and rolls, all made in Japan and stocked in our Toronto warehouse. Each day, our staff renew their commitment to the mission of The Japanese Paper Place,  to do what we can to ensure continuing inspiration and availability of this valuable art material.

Nancy and staff in early days

Noriko Maeda's workshop 


As of June 2021, The JPP has been in a position for Nancy to confidently step back from the daily operations of running the business to the role of Founder. Nancy’s step-daughter, Tara Moore-Jones has transitioned to the leadership role of President, supported by a dedicated, highly creative staff.


This shift in leadership has allowed Nancy more time to focus on her book about the use of washi. It will be a glowing tribute to the steadfast papermakers who persevere against the odds. It will also document many artists in the west who have embraced this newly available ancient material, inspired by its tremendous versatility. This book will compound our 45 year effort to build the world’s awareness of Japanese paper, encouraging an ever-widening appreciation and use of this rich, creative resource.

Nancy Jacobi

Tara Moore-Jones


If you wish to resell our products but not sure where to start, please check our Wholesale FAQs. 


We do more than just sell paper! We have a passion for sharing our love of Japanese paper and paper arts with the world. 


If you are planning to visit our showroom, or have questions, please contact us. We are happy to help!