10 Questions with…Thurston Post

Every week we have been having a fun “10 questions” session with some of our contributors to the Indie Craft Sampler. Some serious, but mostly fun questions. Our fifth installment is with Rebecca from Thurston Post (to read our other 10 question interviews click here). Rebecca will be the last interview for our September contributors…tune in next week to start reading about our October bunch 🙂

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1. What got you interested in paper goods?

About 9 years ago, I was introduced to my first Paper Source store and something happened when I walked in–I felt almost euphoric looking at all of the beautiful colors.  I had always been creative but until then, I never thought I had a crafty bone in my body.  All of these ideas for cards and projects began to form and first on my agenda was to design our wedding invitations.  An obsession was born and I haven’t stopped making things ever since.

2. Is there a story behind the name “Thurston Post”?

Names have always been important to me and coming up with my business name was just as important as the names we chose for our children!  Thurston is my middle name; when I was a kid I hated all of the Gilligan’s Island references, but as I got older, I began to love it; it’s uncommon (especially for a girl) and it’s a family name so it has meaning, which is what I wanted for my business, too.  I started out making cards and have a passion for stationary which generally travels through the mail–or post.  Then I began blogging and the term “post” is synonymous with that, as well.  And so, Thurston Post came together.

3. Best advice another crafty/indie shop owner has given you? Do you have any advice for others?

Don’t compare yourself to others.  I’ve heard it and read it from several sources and I firmly believe it’s true.  Everyone is coming from a different place and everyone’s situation is different.  It’s very difficult not to feel that twinge of jealousy when another shop owner has a major success–and I find that it usually happens on a day when my little shop seems stuck in a rut.  (Here’s my bit of advice:)  Instead of feeling deflated, I try to find something positive in a friend/competitor’s milestone and apply it to my own shop.  It’s good to let the competition motivate you to grow your company.  This business ebbs and flows and if you stick with it, believe in yourself and your product, and you don’t give up, success will find you, too.  It may not happen by leaps and bounds, but it’s healthy to remember that baby steps are important, too.

4. How/where do you get ideas for new shop items?

I’m usually most inspired by color combinations.  Color is so important because it’s attractive to the eye and when you’re attracted to something, you take an interest in it. Each one of my washi covered clothespin sets were created because of color combinations.  I also love to look at beautiful things–especially paper or DIY kits.  I like to see many different pieces laid out together, sometimes neatly, sometimes messy.  So I’ve been trying to make more gift wrap and embellishment kits with the layout and colors in mind.

5. Put your iPod (or what you listen to music on) on shuffle? What are the first 5 songs?
I’m driven by music so I LOVE this question!  Happily, my iPhone chose some great songs:
  Velocity Girl by Primal Scream
  Lustre by Ed Harcourt
  Bird On The Wire by Leonard Cohen
  The City Is A Drag by Hawksley Workman
  No Surface All Feeling by Manic Street Preachers
thurstonpost_at_work
6. Do you have any unusual phobias?
Oh, goodness, my life is ruled by anxiety!  When I was younger I suffered from social phobia which means that interacting with people and being in public situations (especially middle and high school) were nearly panic-inducing.  I was painfully shy.  I’ve come a very long way since then, but sometimes old fears and avoidance habits still creep up.  I also have a major fear of vomiting.  I know that no one really likes it, but it terrifies me, again to the point of panic attacks.  I actually went about 15 years without throwing up but then I moved to California and that streak ended.

7. Nerdiest (is that a word?) thing you do in your free time?

I hang out with my husband!  He’s a professional geek in the IT industry and he’s pretty obsessed with gadgets so, through him, I’ve become more of a nerd than I was before I met him.

8. Strangest talent you have?
I’m not sure if it’s a talent but I know a lot about certain genres of music–80’s and 90’s mainly.  I have a knack for retaining useless information and pop culture references, in general.  I also used to be really good at remembering names and faces, though as I get older, I find my memory fails me more and more!
9. What are 3 things still left on your bucket list?
Hmm, I don’t really have a bucket list, but there are things I’d like to do as a crafter/designer, things I’d like to do with my family, and things I’d like to overcome (like the above-mentioned phobias).  So I’ll say one of each of those things:  I want to learn calligraphy.  I’d love to travel as much as possible and when our kids get a little older (they’re still toddlers), it would be fun to visit each of the 50 states as a family.  I’d really love to get over all of my anxieties and worry; I think I would get so much more out of life if I could relax and enjoy it instead of worrying about all of the bad stuff that might happen.

10. Why should people visit your shop?

All of the handmade items are made by me–and only me–so each item is truly one of a kind.  I also take care to wrap up each item in a pretty way and I’ve recently started including some free handmade tags with each order.  Customer service is extremely important to me, as well.  When I take a custom order, I love to work with the client to be sure they get exactly what they want.  It sometimes takes an extra couple of hours on my end to conceive, create, and photograph a custom listing–or even just to tweak an existing one–but I don’t mind going the extra distance to earn a happy, loyal customer.  It’s absolutely worth it.
thurstonpost
  Rebecca’s most amazing little gift wrap kits will be in 75 September sampler boxes so if you haven’t purchased your sampler yet you can do so here.
 
Check out Thurston Post for cards, twine, kits, clothespins & other holiday paper cuteness.
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