Archive of ‘Paper Hearts Business’ category

Giving Back: Teaching a Styling Class in Deep Creek, MD

I recently had the amazing opportunity to teach a flat lay styling class to a group of eight wedding professionals in Deep Creek, Maryland. The class was an equal mix of instruction and hands-on learning. We met at The Cornucopia Cafe, which also has amazing coffee, desserts, full dinner menu and even a craft beer on tap brewed specially for the restaurant.

Flat lay definition: A flat lay is a picture taken from a birds eye view of a collection of items laid out on a flat surface. Usually there will be one item that is the main focus of the shot known as the hero, all the other items in the flat lay are there to complement the hero piece.

The attendees were asked to bring items related to their business to photograph and we saw a great mix of materials! As a perk for attending the class, each student got a handout listing the sources from which I order my styling supplies, as well as a little run down on how to make your own fabric styling board. They also got to dive into my stash of styling ribbons, ring dishes, wax seals and fresh flowers (thegypsyannie.com) to create a flay lay of their own during the class.

As a blog reader, if you would like a copy of my little tip sheet you can download it here!

A special thanks to the Garrett County Wedding Professionals and The Deep Creek Wedding for inviting me to teach at this unique event. I look forward to hopefully teaching another class in the future!

Photos by Jessica Fike Photography

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Paper Hearts on a Podcast!

So You Said Yes – The Dos and Don’ts of Wedding Planning is a podcast by Brittany Anne‘s and it covers topics such as finding the perfect wedding dress, the appropriate venue and now it answers important questions about your wedding invitations! Brittany met with me in my studio where we chatted all things paper. Some hot topics discussed were the contents wedding invitation suite, how much postage you may need, plus my tips and tricks for staying within your stationery budget while still having a beautiful design!

If you’re just beginning to plan your wedding and want more information about invitations, start by downloading my printable wedding stationery timeline and filling out this form to tell me all about your wedding.

You can hear the whole episode by following the link below (it also includes helpful information from Haley of Studio Lane Calligraphy about watercolor designs) and don’t forget to subscribe to listen to all of Brittany’s Wedding Planning topics!

Episode 6: Save the Dates, Invitations, & More!

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The blog post I look forward to every year…

Well, we’ve made it to the end of another year! 2018 was so good to me in many ways. I love looking back at my year and focusing on the positive wins and this year was filled with little victories. My business is moving forward and I met most of my goals like blogging regularly and getting organized with my client management software Dubsado.

 

RTS Leader Retreat

In January, I traveled with Rebecca of MotionWorks Weddings to the annual Rising Tide Society leader retreat held in New Orleans. This conference really kicked off the new year with good vibes and I look forward to the attending retreat again in 2019. The energy from the other leaders and the sense of community made me feel like we are really doing good things with our group in Morgantown. If you’re a creative entrepreneur in the Morgantown area, email me hello@paperheartsinvitations.com for more information about our group meetings!

Madison Short Photography

 

New Office Space

In June, we renovated our basement and I gained a beautiful new office and studio space. The office move also helped me to organize my paper samples and overflowing craft supplies. The office is perfectly pink and gold, my own little oasis for creativity.

 

Holiday Market

In November, I was part of the biggest and best Handcrafted Cooperative event yet! The Holiday Market in downtown Morgantown was so successful for all of the makers and I look forward to selling my prints and pillows at future markets.

 

Welcome Baby Boy

Along with the business wins also came the birth of our sweet baby boy, Reid. He arrived in August and is by far my biggest accomplishment of 2018 and completes our family of 4. I never thought I would be a boy mom, but here I am raising little gentlemen and loving every slobbery minute. I took a much needed maternity leave from August until November with only light work between November and the end of the year. Starting January 2 I will begin normal office hours, but I am adjusting my production schedule to account for my new life chasing two littles. You the customer won’t really see any changes, but I will be giving myself a few more days to complete projects.

Amberlee Christey Photography

 

2018 Design Projects

Speaking of projects, In 2018 I created…

30 Wedding Invitation Suites
6 Baby Shower Invitations
2 Bridal Shower Invitations
3 Baptism Invitations
2 Birth Announcements
6 Birthday Party Invitations
7 Christmas Cards
1 Human Baby
+ many wedding day stationery orders and branding projects!

I can’t thank my brides and customers enough for letting me create these beautiful pieces for their most important day.

Here’s a look at a few wedding invitation designs of 2018.

Kathryn Hyslopp Photography

 

Megan Lee Photography

 

Jenna Lindsey Photography

 

Danielle Durbin Film and Photo

 

Kuirsta and Seth

 

Steven Dray Photography

 

I hope you and your loved ones have a joyous and prosperous new year, and to quote Ellen, “be kind to one another.”

 

Allison Kotarsky

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What It Means To Shop Small

Shopping Small – The Handcrafted Cooperative –

I’ll admit, shopping local is something that wasn’t always important to me. I didn’t truly understand the importance of the shopping small movement. It wasn’t until I became a entrepreneur myself that I knew how much hard work and love went into each small business and their products. The blood, sweat and tears are something we all know comes with any job, especially a small business, but what I didn’t realize came with the gig was the overwhelming support of the creative community. The friendships I’ve gained since becoming a small business owner is something I was surprised by and I’m incredibly grateful for. These business owners, these REAL PEOPLE, are so welcoming and kind. We all have struggles in our craft but at the end of the day we all love what we do and enjoying bringing joy to each person who makes a purchase from us. We love building other another up rather than tearing each other down to make our community stronger.

The Handcrafted Cooperative offers a seasonal retail market dedicated to handmade items created by the most talented independent makers in our area. We help improve our local economy, support small business, and keep our community unique.

I am so excited to be a part of the Holiday Market this year.

This week alone, I’ve worked with two other Handcrafted Cooperative vendors bouncing ideas off of each other about our booth set ups and chatting about last minute product additions. We are all excited. We want you to be excited. We want all of Morgantown to be excited. This Holiday Market is going to be the best yet and we can’t wait to see you there. Even if you stop by to browse, listen to the live music or grab some coffee, that means so much to our community of creatives. Your support of the event brings just as much joy as a making a purchase.

I can’t say enough good things about the coordinator of this whole shebang, Megan Ursic. Talk about an amazing, purpose driven gal. Megan’s positive energy and smile make you feel like old friends even if you’ve just met. She founded the Handcrafted Cooperative because there was a lack of markets in this area focused on makers and handmade goods. This market would not be successful without her ambitious goals to make this the best maker’s market in the area. Thank you, Megan, for your passion and bringing us creatives together for such an amazing event. The lineup of vendors is good, real good. Go check out the line up here!

The Handcrafted Cooperative
Saturday, November 17, 2018  |  10am – 2pm
413 Spruce Street, Morgantown, WV
Free Admission and Family Friendly
http://www.thehandcraftedcooperative.com

New Products

Here’s a preview of some of my new products making their debut at the event this Saturday. To say I love Christmas is an understatement. I had so much fun with these new designs!


Allison Kotarsky

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When Should I Send Out Invitations?

Planning a wedding and sticking to a stationery ordering schedule can be a little confusing. Since there are so many different paper pieces to consider, I’ve created a wedding stationery timeline to make ordering your invitations and wedding day pieces a breeze. The timeline lists each item and tells you when your order should be placed with Paper Hearts and when to send them out to your guests.

You can download a printable version of the guide that has spaces for you to fill out your own dates.

Paper Hearts Wedding Stationery Timeline

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Paper Hearts Rebrand

After 10 years of being in the graphic design industry, the hardest person to design for is, hands down, MYSELF! I design something for myself and then I completely throw it out the window because I never feel it is good enough. I guess being picky is a blessing and a curse because it pushes me to become a better designer but can also drive me crazy! When I started my journey in 2013 with Paper Hearts, I designed my branding to incorporate two things that I love, hearts and the color pink. Today, I am revealing the new look of Paper Hearts Invitations. It still has the very same heart I started with back then and the color pink, but it matches my design style a little more. Watercolor florals and script fonts are what I love to incorporate for my brides so I wanted to match my branding a little more to my everyday design style. I wanted this logo to be a little more “ME” and I am so excited to share it with you guys!

Let’s take a look back and my previous logos.logo2013

And here is the new look for Paper Hearts Invitations! Let me know what you think in the comments below.

xo, Allison

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6 Things To Do Before Contacting Your Stationery Designer

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photo by: Amberlee Christey Photography

So you’re starting to plan your wedding – congrats! With the holidays winding down, we are in the tail end of “engagement season.” All of those pretty pictures of your gal pal’s new diamonds are probably flooding your Facebook feed and you suddenly realize that 2016 is just a few days away and you’re getting married THIS YEAR! (mini freak-out session). You probably still have a million decisions to make, but hopefully this list will help you to be prepared when it is time for us to meet and talk about your wedding invitations!

1. Set a Date
This is a no-brainer. Without a date we can’t really start on a project timeline or narrow down your invitation wording.

2. Pick a Theme and Colors
This is a big one. Of course we can decide on the exact color of blue you want to use at our meeting, but come with a general idea of what your wedding colors are and what theme you plan to use for the event.

3. Set a Budget!
This is probably the most important one. Unless your budget is unlimited, which most bride’s aren’t, set a budget you’d like to stick with. This will help save time and keep your stationery designer on track with what can be done for you.

4. Chose a Hotel for Your Guests
Ok, even if you don’t officially call to book the hotel or necessarily even need one, have an idea about that ahead of time so that we can plan ahead to include that information on your invitation.

5. Meal Choices
Decide if you are having meal choices or a buffet/family style ahead of time. This will help us plan out your RSVP card more efficiently. Even if you aren’t tasting food for another couple of months and don’t have the exact meals narrowed down yet, have a general idea so that we can plan accordingly for space.

6. Know All Names
This may seem like an easy one, but make sure you know how each of your parents wants to be listed on the invitation. If Dad goes by a nickname and rarely uses his given name, ask him what he prefers. If your beau is a Junior, find out if he wants to be listed as such. This will make planning out the flow of the invitation wording much easier.

Hopefully this will help prepare you for our meeting! Don’t forget to contact me AT LEAST four months before your wedding to start on your invitations. I look forward to working with you!

– Allison

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Morgantown Rising Tide Society

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Happy Wednesday everyone!

Yesterday was my favorite day of the month. It’s on the first Tuesday of each month that I get the privilege to meet with a wonderful group of creatives in the Morgantown area to discuss various business topics and ideas. Each time I leave the meeting feeling the spark in my creative heart flicker again and I’m full of excited energy (and good food)! Some days I just get in a slump with my ideas and can’t help questioning myself and thinking “Why the heck am I doing this?!” I think we all get discouraged and feel like what we are doing isn’t enough or doesn’t make sense, but it’s meeting with a group of (mostly) ladies who have the same feelings as I do that makes me feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be with my business. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE what I do, but some days I’d rather curl up on the couch with a pint of ice cream and just watch Fixer Upper all day!

Cheers to fresh ideas and a creative spark as I dive into two new invitation designs this week!

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Starting Fresh

Well, while attempting to switch my blog address I accidentally wiped out my entire blog! Whoops! So here I am, starting fresh. I will be re-posting some of the invitations I featured before, but adding in plenty more as I go!

Thanks for reading and sorry for my silly mistake.

Here’s a pretty picture to get you started…

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