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Blog

Filtering by Tag: Cards

A long time in the making.

Megan Merry

It's happened.

Back in 2014 I received my very first air plant. It was a birthday gift sent by mail from my cousin who lives in Denver. To say the least, I was intrigued. This plant's variety of shapes, the earthy and vibrant colors, the fact that it grows without needing soil and has no roots... I found all of this to be fascinating.

I decided to sketch a series of air plants somewhere around 11 p.m. on a Friday night with Daphne Jane snoozing next to me.

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Fast forward to 2018 and I have morphed these air plant sketches into a set of four thank you cards with matching lined envelopes.

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I assemble every lined envelope by hand (though not quite as quickly as this video* makes it seem!). ;)


These thank you card sets are available at Art Terrarium, one of the most fun plant stores in Des Moines, Iowa. If you haven't been in to see for yourself, it's a must. They have an amazing selection of plants, have the coolest pots, offer classes and even have a potting bar!


*Little shout-out to my husband, who snapped a quick video of me assembling envelopes on a Saturday morning.

Also, contact me if you're interested in purchasing a set of four thank you cards.

Card Writing Tip

Megan Merry

Recently I had a customer ask the secret to not messing up cards. She found that as she was writing letters on her custom stationery, she was writing something that sounded off, spelled something wrong, or something didn't quite fit on the line as she was hoping. I'm sure this is familiar territory to all of us (re: we've all been there... do we draw a heart over the misspelling and call it good, own the squishy sentence that in no-way should have fit on that line, or do we scrap everything and start all over?).

My tip (and what I practice at home, because I'm totally guilty of drawing hearts over misspellings* and scrapping everything and starting all over): Write your letter out on a similar sized scratch piece of paper before using the card or custom stationery. I sometimes start with typing a draft email if it's a more complex message where I want the wording to be just so. Regardless, I do make it a habit to write the note out by hand beforehand.

I find it helps with spacing things out evenly. It helps me better articulate what I'm trying to communicate. And it warms up my writing muscles so I'm putting my best handwriting to use.

:)

*When I was just a wee-little-girl, my mom taught me to "just draw a heart" over any misspellings. I'm pretty sure all my aunts and uncles, grandparents and friends received letters from me with random hearts drawn mid-sentence. It's charming, and a really great way to encourage children to write letters and thank yous.

Wishing you + yours the happiest of holidays...

Megan Merry

My favorite part of the holidays include some down-time with my loves, holiday lights (!!!!), getting cards in the mail from family and friends and sending out some holiday cheer of our own.

With stationery, details are everything. From the Oscar de la Renta stamps to the emerald green envelopes, I wanted to send a "statement piece" holiday card this year. I hand addressed the envelopes with a gold pen that lays the ink down beautifully, and signed every card (because I think it's more fun that way!).

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Here's wishing you and yours the happiest of holidays!

Cheers!

Shameless Plug:
Our family photos were taken by Lauren Konrad Photography. She is wonderful to work with!

My 1st vendor fair

Megan Merry

I started Megan + Jane for a number of reasons. One being that I would be able to explore, flex new muscles and learn along the way.

Last month it was like, "Check... check... and check!"

I  participated in my first vendor fair: hutchFest Omaha.

It was fun, exhausting and an overall positive experience. hutch did an amazing job coordinating the event, handling a last-minute venue change (because, Nebraska weather) and bringing in a great crowd.

My booth was surrounded by inspiring and smart business women. We had a lot in common, and offered nothing but encouragement and support to each other as the day winded down. But hands down, the best part of my day was meeting people. The Sorry I Suck* card was pretty popular, and it cracked me up to hear why people were buying it.

I learned I can be shy to ask for help, but realized early on that I would need some to make this event happen. Which is why I am SO GRATEFUL for...

My bestie, who helped me set up my booth super early on a Saturday morning. My mom, who always encourages me to do what might be scary (turns out, everything usually turns out to be just fine). Friends and moms have a way of making things more fun... and saying just the right things at the right time.

My husband, who helped me turn a rough sketch of my booth into a real, living, breathing 3D booth (yep—I took over the garage mocking everything up beforehand, made like 5,000 trips to the hardware store and used power tools to create a booth that could stand up AND fold-down to fit in the back of my car). He also stayed home with our toddler so I could focus my attention on Megan + Jane for the day. I was grateful for his support—and also realized how difficult it is to be a new mom and juggle the side hustle.

If you made it out to the event: thank you! If you bought a Sorry I Suck* card: thank you (and know you don't suck)!

One year down

Megan Merry

We did it!

One year ago I took a leap and launched Megan + Jane. Words cannot express how grateful I am. Everything from the people I work with to the professional (and personal) growth that joined me for the ride have proven to be more than I could have asked for.

As most of us do, I set goals for myself when I set out on this entrepreneurial adventure. Every couple months I check-in to see how I’m doing. Sure, the analytics and numbers are important, but I’ve been most interested with my personal and professional growth. These check-ins are something that work for me. They help keep me focused, and appreciate how far I’ve come. When reflecting on the past year, here are a few areas that I feel most proud of:

Lesson No. 1

Find the uncomfortable.
Getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new is one of the best (and quickest) ways to grow. Before launching, I had no idea how to price my product, how to position myself in a saturated industry, how to approach businesses about possibly carrying my branded Megan + Jane cards… no idea about a lot of things. But I asked a lot of questions. I tried different approaches. I got creative. I followed-up. I introduced myself and my products to strangers. As a result, I learned. Now my cards are found in some of the most adorable boutiques and paper good stores in the Midwest!

Lesson No. 2

Find your tribe.
In the past year I've worked with some amazing people (re: paper vendors, printers, business owners and brides/moms-to-be). Providing a quality product is my number one priority. Finding and working with smart paper vendors and printers who care was key. I'm so thankful to have met people in the industry that I can trust. Meeting business owners and having my branded Megan + Jane cards carried in their stores has been terrific. I love that my cards are selling for them and that I'm getting requests for reorders. Designing custom pieces for people is always an honor. This year I was involved in a number of weddings, bridal showers, baby showers and birth announcements. I love being part of such monumental life moments.

Lesson No. 3

Find the magic.
It took me awhile (okay, many, many, many late nights and weekends) to figure out a process and design aesthetic for Megan + Jane. From the look of the cards, to the branding, to using the camera—a learning curve was involved with every piece of the puzzle. In the past year I’ve refined my craft, and am continuing to evolve the Megan + Jane brand. Most importantly, I am improving my knowledge of how to balance innovation with the bottom line. It’s good for me to tame my "perfectionist" traits in order to evolve and try new things more freely because that’s where the magic happens.

Thank you SO MUCH for your support this year!

To show my appreciation, I put together a merry-mix to celebrate. Listen here.

Plus, get FREE shipping with code ONEDOWN in my Etsy shop now through December 1. ♥

A Bittersweet Photo Shoot

Megan Merry

In case you haven't had the pleasure of staging a card photo shoot, I'll go ahead and share that there's a bit of a learning curve to it.

Recently I was going through some old photos and rediscovered these:

The photos made me laugh/cry.

Laugh, because in my head this photo was going to be epic—and as you can see, it's anything but. I was going for the most adorable shot of our Daphne Jane licking up one of her treats. Instead I had the lighting, angles, composition all wrong. Plus, she ate her treat too fast!

Cry, because it’s a photo I really wanted to try retaking, but as life (and some photo shoots prove), you can’t always plan how things will pan out. Our dog was the most patient as I learned to take better photos, made the frustrating moments fun and I miss her hard. I’ll have to enjoy the epic "fail" with these photos, appreciate the thought, and Daphne Jane’s willingness to eat her treat. :)

Note: All photos taken by Megan Merry.

 

Card Spotlight: Wishing You the Best

Megan Merry

Because all too often I find people in my life going after huge goals and doing amazing things—I created a card to encourage them to keep going. After all, I wish nothing but the best for them! ♡

This good luck/encouragement card features the saying, "Wishing you the best" with an elephant's trunk up.

The reason for the elephant: 
Elephants are my favorite animal.

The placement of his trunk:
In certain cultures, an elephant's trunk up symbolizes good luck.

So why do I love elephants so much?
+ They are one of the most family-oriented migrating animals, and have incredible memories—never forgetting an elephant they once met
+ They are playful, fearless and forgiving within their herd
+ They mourn the passing of other elephants, similar to how humans mourn at a funeral

Basically, elephants inspire and remind me what it means to be a strong family unit.

This card is screen printed in a flat gold metallic ink on pink paper from the French Paper Company. It's folded, with a blank interior for you to write an encouraging note to that person in your life who is about to move mountains!

Note: All photos taken by Megan + Dane Merry.

Mother's Day is taking on a new meaning!

Megan Merry

Mother’s Day.

Next weekend is Mother's Day. A celebratory occasion I’ve always devoted to my mom, aunts, sister-in-laws, grandmas and the other amazing and influential women that have helped shape me over the years.

This year is a little different because my husband and I are expecting our first child(!). My definitions of motherhood are becoming more personal—and I couldn’t be more thrilled for the experience, the challenges I’ll encounter and the advice I’ll seek from all those women who’ve made an impact in my life thus far. 

It’s a day I’m planning to take a moment alone to jot a few thoughts down about the mother I want to be to our unborn child. 

A day I’m going to celebrate for the first time.

This card is printed on bubblegum pink paper from the French Paper Company. The design is screen printed with a flat gold metallic ink to add elegance and warmth to this card. The interior is left blank for you to write (or draw!) something your mom will love.

Order your card by Tuesday, May 3 and have it in time for Mother's Day!

Card Spotlight: More Than You'll Ever Know

Megan Merry

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Jumping into the new year means we’re most likely taking a moment to appreciate 2015, and jotting down a few thoughts for how we can make 2016 just a little bit better. Might I suggest something? What about sending random cards to the people you care about the most? It’s something I do from time-to-time and have learned that 1) it makes me feel good and 2) I sometimes get a follow-up call or quick note from them saying how much it made their day… which, in return, makes my day. ♡

This card, More Than You’ll Ever Know, is one that’s perfect for Valentine’s Day, Anniversaries, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Just Because, and the list goes on.

I really love the classic look of gold and navy, but know most people don’t have gold or white pens on-hand. So I searched high and low for a quality paper stock that would work for this card and found this duplex card stock, which means it’s navy on one side and white on the other. This card is screen printed on the navy side with a flat gold metallic ink. The interior is white, and left blank for you to write a personal note.

Make this year a year where you surprise the ones you love with a hand-written note. You’ll feel good making someone’s day, and what’s not to love about that?

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Note: All photos taken by Megan Merry.

 

Card Spotlight: Newborn Congratulations

Megan Merry

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Giraffes are my mom’s favorite animal. So it was only natural to create a Newborn Congratulations Card with a mom and baby giraffe. ♡

This card is screen printed on mint green paper from the French Paper Company. I chose a flat gold metallic ink to add warmth and charm to this card. The interior is left blank for you to write a sweet note to the new family.

Something I love to do while drawing an animal is to read up on them. A few facts I found interesting about giraffes are that they:

+ Stand about 16 feet tall
+ Have long tongues, measuring 21-inches
+ Sleep and give birth standing up
+ Take short naps during the day, usually getting only 5-30 minutes of sleep per day

What about you—what's your mom's favorite animal?

 

Note: All photos taken by Megan + Dane Merry.

Newborn Congratulations Card

Newborn Congratulations Card