September 14, 2008
Thank you Kelly, for taking the time to share a bit of your gorgeous stationary world with us!!
Tell us all about yourself and your craft?
My name is Kelly. I’m a stay-at-home mom, political activist, and a long-time entrepreneur. As the face behind Macaroni and Glue, I make custom invitations, handcrafted greeting cards and vintage-inspired blank note sets.
How long have you been creating your craft?
As of the start of this summer, I’ve been in the stationery business for about a year. I’ve actually never been particularly “artsy-craftsy,” but I started making cards and gifts after my daughter was born and money was tight without a second income. I was surprisingly ambitious with my little “projects” (looking for a creative outlet, I suppose), and I tried lots of different mediums and techniques. For my sister’s baby shower, rather than buy an expensive gift from the registry, I created some fairly elaborate thank you cards and put them together as a set for her. People seemed to love them, and I started getting orders for more custom cards – announcements, holiday cards, cards for political fundraisers… you name it. I spent the last half of 2007 filling custom orders, and once the holidays were over, I realized that paper had become a bit of an obsession. I decided to open the shop in February after discovering Etsy and spending a month or so in design heaven working on my vintage-y notecard designs.
What is one of the biggest lesson you have learnt about your craft & selling it?
Focus focus focus. Laser focus is so important when you’re starting a business, and even more important in design. I have really struggled to find a point of view as a designer. If I approach each project from a completely neutral place, I become frustrated very quickly trying to bring a design into focus. I have to be honest with myself about what works and what doesn’t, and refuse to sell anything I don’t love. After a year, I feel like I'm finally able to come to the table with a strong sense of my own capabilities and my individual style.
Which of your items did you have the most fun creating & why?
Great question. I honestly love the process of creating all of my cards – if I don’t have fun putting something together, it doesn’t make it into the shop! As far as my printed cards go, I probably had the most fun with my kitschy 50s girl notecard. She’s so cute! I also really love an excuse to use a hammer, so I had a particularly good time with my newest congratulations card. Eyelets just make me happy.
Is there a basic ‘household’ item you use when creating that seems to work just as good if not better than the actual ‘tool’?
I’m super cheap, and scrapbooking gadgets cost a fortune, so I’ve used anything and everything in my kitchen to help with cards at one point or another. Ultimately, though, I find that there are certain things I just can’t accomplish without a trip to good old Hobby Lobby. I do, however, use a light cube for my photographs that consists of a few pieces of flimsy cardboard, two desk lamps, and two coffee cups. There were also trash bags, coffee cups, a yardstick and a lighter involved in the assembly of my most recent invitation project, but I don’t want to give away all my secrets…
What is your favourite candy bar & why?
$100,000 bar, hands down! Love that combination of crispy and gooey at the same time. Mmmmmmmmmmm…..
If money, responsibilities, and time were no issues where in the great wide world would you go & why?
Anywhere with a beach, sun, crashing waves, no freeways, and no power lines in sight.
Take a wander through Macaroni and Glue at www.macaroniandglue.etsy.com and be quick because Kelly has a great deal running - "Shop for the 2008 holiday collection early and save! Get a $1 Paypal refund when you purchase any boxed holiday card set before October 1st!". You can find out more about the world of Macaroni and Glue at Kelly's great blog http://macaroniandglue.com