We were so excited to partner with Emily and Brad from The Oyster's Pearl for our November box. Their "Eat, Drink and Be Merry" tea towel was the perfect way to start the holiday season! They took time out of their busy schedules to chat with us about balancing a new baby and business, how they've found success and some secret talents!
Tell us a little about your business and how it got started.
Brad and I used our own wedding in 2011 as a creative outlet and had so much fun designing all the stationery, decor, and centerpieces. Soon after, I began designing wedding stationery for friends and family and then launched that passion into our Etsy shop, The Oyster’s Pearl. We originally started out offering custom stationery and wall art, and have since expanded to include screen printed home goods and apparel, woodworking, baby products, and more. We work on the business full-time from our downtown studio space and love getting to spend our days together doing what we most enjoy!
What is your favorite piece in your shop right now and why?
Currently I’m most excited about our “Mama Bear” and “Baby Bear” matching screen printed set - we welcomed our son Amos in June and he’s inspired all kinds of new products. The “Bear” series is all hand-lettered and is really a neat marriage of my love for typography and Brad’s love for screen printing, all rolled in to a super sweet set for mamas and their babes. We had so much fun doing the photo shoot for those and I really treasure the products and how the photographs turned out! Our goal has always been to hand make products we want to use ourselves, and these definitely fit the bill.
What’s a typical workday for you like?
Ha! This has certainly been shaken up ever since our son was born this summer, so there may not be anything “typical” for awhile - but we are getting into a groove! Right now Brad and I usually wake up and have coffee together and spend the morning reading, and after breakfast Brad heads to the studio. I’m currently working from home while Amos is so little and have an at-home office with all of my art supplies, computer, tablet, printer, and scanner. I spend most of the day working on the computer with my son in my lap or playing on the floor next to me. We take little breaks together to read a book or go on a walk or do diaper changes, and all the while Brad is at the studio screen printing or packaging, and then comes home for lunch. We all eat lunch together and Brad gets some time with Amos, and then either spends time at home doing emails or wood-working or working on the website. He takes Amos and our dog on a walk if I need to do anything messy or really hands-on like watercolors or calligraphy in the afternoon. About once a week Brad and I have a work meeting where we go over all of our open orders, product lines, urgent timelines, marketing, taxes, and more. And I do still enjoy making it in to the studio some days to help with packaging or check on inventory. We try to work within the typical 9-5 structure, but the fun part of our job is that every day is a little bit different!
Why do you think your business has done so well?
First of all, thank you! We never dreamed we’d get to do this full-time together and we’re really thankful things have gone well enough for us to make this our day job. I think we’ve found success through great typography, strong product styling, and an honest authentic brand. We try to be transparent with our customers and put a lot of our emotions, life experience, humor, and beliefs into our work and it seems to resonate with people. We love building relationships with customers all over the world through our shared love of design!
Number one interior design tip.
Embrace textures and contrast! I love a neutral interior, but to keep it from getting boring I make sure there are plenty of bright whites, dark blacks, and lots of shades in between. And on that same note, a lot of varying textures - wood grain, cement, marble, brass, fur - make a neutral space feel interesting and luxurious.
What’s one thing you really want to do but have never done?
I would love to permanently live by the beach one day, and Brad wants to visit the Pacific Northwest.
Do you have any secret talents?
I play the ukulele and Brad makes the most beautiful pottery!