Cards, we all have to purchase them for the ones we love and far too often we purchase cards with lame or generic well wishes that fall short of conveying the love and emotion we feel. In comes Mint & Maple Designs to save the day! Natalie creates beautiful custom pieces for any occasion that will truly make your heart smile.
Heirloom: Do you have any morning rituals or things you do to get ready for a long day of creating & painting?
Natalie: I am not the most consistent of people. I would like to tell you a list of "The 3 Morning Rituals That Have Changed My Life" but I don't have one. I will say there are a handful of things that I rotate through to get my creative juices flowing. My office is my home, so if I'm painting that day, I clear my kitchen table off and set up shop. If I can beat the sun, I can almost be guaranteed a productive day. Coffee is a must- it's my reward for getting up. I try not to answer emails first, or I could spend my most creative hours on the computer. I warm up my hand by doodling in watercolor or lettering a favorite phrase or quote.
Heirloom: We love your tagline: Fresh + Thoughtful + Handmade - Tell us the meaning behind it!
Natalie: I have always loved making handmade cards for people. Whether a birthday card or a card for no reason, it offers a way to show the people I love that I am thinking about them and that they matter to me. When I started Mint & Maple, I wanted that personal touch to continue to flow into the designs of my products. Nothing is more thoughtful to me than someone hand picking out a card they think I'd love and writing me a hand written note. That is why none of my cards have too much wording on the outside and all my cards are blank inside- it offers a space for you to take the time and say what you mean. I try and make each design simple and fresh to the eye. I think there is something really beautiful about simplicity.
Heirloom: What intrigues you most about paper & design?
Natalie: I love the idea that something simple like paper can have endless possibilities. I am constantly amazed at the creativity of people in the greeting card + paper goods industry. You'd think a greeting card would be limiting, but you still see so many new, witty phrases or interesting designs.
Heirloom: Tell us about your journey into paper goods! Is there a story?
Natalie: After I graduated from UT Austin, I knew I wanted to do something different than my major. My husband, Josh, and I had just gotten married and we brainstormed ways my creativity and passion for everything paper could be mixed with a job, and out came Mint & Maple Designs! Mint & Maple started out offering cards and prints, and now has evolved into wedding invitation design, hand lettering/envelope addressing, signage and classes. I have loved every minute of starting this business. It has totally blown my expectations out of the water and I can't wait to see where it goes!
Heirloom: Tell us a little about your class that you teach!
Natalie: MY CLASS! I love my class. This is the best part of my job. Yes, designing a custom invitation suite for a client is super fun and rewarding, but as an extreme extrovert, it can be exhausting working by myself all day. Teaching my Brush Lettering 101 Workshop has been just what the doctor ordered. I get to teach something I absolutely love to people who are eager to learn and explore their creativity. I get to set up an experience for people to come, relax, learn something new, and have fun in a safe and comfortable environment. Teaching is a joy for me. In the class, I teach the basic principles of watercolor- how the pigment works, brush types, amount of water needed, etc. Then we go through different drills and stroke practice to perfect the brush lettering skill. To me, it's way easier than calligraphy as the brush is very forgiving. Right now I'm teaching in Austin, Houston, Dallas and Fort Worth, but always looking for a new place to take it :)