We're very excited to start a new blog series featuring the many fantastic shops that carry our cards and stationery! These are the businesses and people that keep the practice of snail mailing alive and growing, and nothing makes us happier than helping them stock their pretty displays and shelves.
First up is Paper Delights in Seattle! Alicia and her mom, Kathy, have just celebrated nine years since they opened up their Wallingford storefront. And they recently opened up their second location in Seahurst. Being on opposite coasts, we haven't had the chance to visit in person but we know we would feel like we stepped in paper heaven. Luckily for us, Alicia was happy to kick off our new blog series. Read on to hear what led her and her mom to start Paper Delights and what's been captivating their customers lately!
When did Paper Delights open? What was the inspiration or motivation behind the opening of a brick and mortar store?
We opened in March of 2008 right before things got really bad! In October of 2007 me and my husband were living in California and wanted to move back home to Seattle to start a family! So one night while my Mom was visiting us in California we sat outside with a bottle of wine and dreamt up and idea where we would open a stationery store and I would have a crib in the back and the baby would come to work with me every day!
The next day we got online found a space in Wallingford that was just being built, by Halloween the lease was signed! In November I found out I was pregnant! My husband moved to Seattle and worked around the clock for a month building the store out while I finished my job in California. We opened our doors on March 8, 2008. Then on July, 8, 2008, we welcomed baby Blake into the world!
It sounds crazy but I did bring him into work most days! Some days were better than others, but I always loved having something I was passionate about and not having to leave him behind was a huge plus! Peopled loved to stop in and see the "shop baby." As he became a toddler it got harder and harder and then when Blake was 2 we welcomed his brother Drew into family! At that point I had to take a step back and stay home with the boys, while Mom did almost everything for the shop. Now nine years later both boys are finally in school full time and I can work quite a bit more.
What led to the decision to open a second location?
When we opened nine years ago traffic in Seattle was nothing compared to what it is today. As our commute to Wallingford got longer and longer we had an idea to move our office closer to our homes. When we found a spot between our two houses and across the street from the boys' school it seemed like a good idea! We love how close it is to everything and are growing the business every day!
Is there a story behind the name?
Not a really great story, my mom suggested it and we both loved it! My boys call it the "Num shop" because when they were little they would pull stools over to the candy tables and climb up and eat candy while we weren't looking!
Do you have a fun fact about your store(s) that most people wouldn’t know?
We just turned our backroom into a classroom so now we can host classes without disrupting the store as much!
What do you love about your shop’s neighborhood(s)?
I love all the people that we have grown to know so well over the past nine years in Wallingford! It is so fun to work there and see familiar faces and hear about their lives and families! In Seahurst it's fun to see friends and meet new neighbors every day!
What’s your favorite Smudge Ink product?
All the amazing birthday cards! They all sell so fast we can hardly keep them in stock!
What song or album is playing in your shop right now?
I love the James Morrison station on Pandora!
Is there a fun new stationery or gift trend that you particularly enjoy or that customers are responding well to?
I would say calligraphy classes! We can't even really keep up with the demand for classes!
(image sources: Paper Delights)