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Meet the Maker Month: Lora of Marg & Kay Paper Co.

I’m a mother, wife, daughter, sister - I see myself first as a family-oriented person. I love a good challenge. I say I’m persistent and tenacious - some (my husband) may call it obsessive. There’s not much I love more than laughing…well maybe tacos.

How did you come up with the name of your small business? I named it after my amazing grandmothers who showed me what love for family really is, how to have a sense of humor, and that having a little spunk is what it’s all about. I love my nans (Marg and Kay).

What would you consider the most difficult thing related to your business? I’d say the scariest part is putting myself out there. It’s terrifying for me to put my work out into the world. Sometimes I feel like I almost hold my breath as I put an item out there.

What is the most satisfying thing related to your business? That I’m actually doing it. It sounds ridiculous as I write this but carrying through from idea to reality is so thrilling. This is something I’ve wanted to do for some time and recently decided why not now?!

What does being a Maker mean to you? Being a maker lets me stretch my creative muscles. I use to say that I wasn’t a creative person but now I see that creativity comes in all sorts of forms. When I’m creating and making, I’m in my happy place. Minutes can turn into hours while I work happily away at my desk.

What motivates you to create? It’s just part of who I am… When I learn, see, hear or experience new things, my mind just starts turning and imagining.

Where are you from and how does that influence your work? I was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland. The very first greeting cards and notecards I made featured pictures of beautiful Newfoundland sites. Although I was only 8 when I moved from Newfoundland to Ottawa, I like to think that I’ve inherited the characteristics so many Newfoundlanders are known for: warm, fun-loving, funny, and creative.

What is your favorite thing you've created and why? A commission card I donated to a stranger whose friend was diagnosed with cancer. This was my favorite card - not because of the card itself but because of the interaction. It taught me that my ability to make has the power to impact people in a positive way. I am so grateful for that.

Tell us about your first sale I’m not too proud to admit that my first sale was to my mom. We’ve all got to start somewhere, right?!

What is your dream project? I’d love the opportunity to collaborate with other makers and marketplaces to bring Marg & Kay Paper Co. to wider audiences. How awesome would it be to have the luxury of having more time to dedicate to my maker dream?!

Do you accept commissions? Yes

Describe your creative process I truly haven’t nailed down my creative process quite yet, but it does a little something like this: I always have a notepad around for when those lightbulb moments strike. Those moments happen at the most random of times - while watching a movie, pacing with the dog, in those last moments before falling asleep. I have to write them down or they’re gone as quickly as they popped into my head. My notepad has a long ongoing list. When the mood strikes, I’ll take one idea and start playing with it in my mind and start drafting wording and graphical elements (if it’s a card). Most times, the initial draft and the final version look very different from one another. I like to bounce my drafts off of trusted supporters to get some feedback before publishing.

Describe your latest project I’m working on adding a new product line - stationery sets. I’d like to take some of my favorite greeting cards and develop them into sets. I’m learning that there are many other stationery lovers out there just like me.

What are your long-term goals? Long term, I’d love to continue building the business and venturing into more product lines. Being able to make items that customers love is such a fulfilling thing.

What steps are you taking to ensure your growth as a maker? To keep growing, I like to read about what’s going on in the marketplace - not only specifically with card making. I like learning about other crafts and maker skills to think about how it could possibly apply or cross-over to what I do. I’d like to do more connecting within the maker community to learn from others.

What three adjectives would you use to describe your work?

Fun, colorful, and punny

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