Twitter, thank you once again for introducing me to not only a talented wedding supplier, but also a really friendly, professional and kind team behind it all. It’s been brilliant chatting with Katie and Chris of Myrtle and May to discuss this post because they are so nice, and can’t do enough to make sure you’re happy with what you’ve asked for. In my case, a few wee tweaks to the template designs of their beautiful stationery. They got in touch with me to see if I would feature them on here, and I said yes please in a heartbeat. I loved the vintage florals, and asked if they would combine the other patterns and designs to create more rock ‘n’ roll and rockabilly style stationery. They did this straight away and were pleased to do so: a reassuring sign that you’d be working with a company all for creating your perfect stationery and making sure you’re happy with their service.
Being a sticky beak (Australians have the best phrases!!), I love to know the reasons behind a brand name, the people behind the business, the motivations that lead to the finished product, so I donned my interviewer’s hat and asked some questions (how I wish I had a skinny microphone like the one on Blankety Blank that Terry Wogan waved about. Not that that would do any good when I email my questions… I digress.):
WOW: Hello! I love your stationery so much. The designs you’ve got really appeal to me and my personal style. How should people go about choosing a stationer for the one day that should say so much about them as a couple?
M&M: There are several influences over how you would choose a stationer. Obviously, you have to like their style, and then decide whether their themes and colours match your wedding theme.
WOW: So, basically do your research into who’s designing what, and see what speaks to you the most? Myrtle and May has been incredibly flexible in tweaking the design combinations even with me, i.e. I wasn’t buying stationery, I was just asking to showcase designs! Is that something you do as part of your actual service?
M&M: Oh yes, all of our designs are available in any colour you can think of. We’re currently offering them in exchange for a £1 donation to Marie Curie Cancer Care (via www.justgiving.com/losingthelouboutins/). You select one of our designs, and we supply you with the artwork to print at home or via a printer of your own choice (at your own cost). We hope by doing this that we’re not only helping a charity, but it makes us very affordable.
WOW: That is such a great idea: it helps those on a tight budget, and also means a charity gets some money. Win win! What made you get into wedding stationery?
M&M: We started our business last October on Katie’s 30th birthday because we wanted to have time to build a positive reputation within the wedding industry, with the hope of constant work before our young children started school. Chris is a full-time graphic designer, and Katie is mad on weddings and ditsy prints (our two little girls are rarely dressed in anything but a floral ditsy print!), so we set to and designed a range of floral-inspired ditsy prints that could be used to customise a set of invitation designs, all named after some of the important women in our lives.
WOW: Sounds like the ideal way of combining all those skills and loves! Whose work do you admire?
M&M: There are several other stationers and designers that we love, although we try hard not to look at others’ work too regularly because it’s very easy to compare yourself, and either think you’re not good enough, or that you’re not ‘keeping up with the Joneses’, so to speak.
WOW: I know exactly what you mean! On the one hand, because it’s your interest, you just want to keep looking at all these beautiful websites of talented people’s work just to see the things you love, but then you think, “eep, I hope mine is as appealing to people and making them just as happy”. I worry that I’ll be subconsciously influenced by something, and accidentally nick an idea because I thought it was my own. But enough of my neuroses! What words or inspirational phrases do you live by?
M&M: ‘What’s meant for you won’t miss you’. We always try to be grateful for what we already have instead of wanting more because ‘life is short’!
WOW: I love that phrase so much. My mum told me a variation of that one (‘what’s for you won’t go by you’) when I was young, and it is so true! Very wise, and a very nice thing to have faith in, kind of all peaceful and accepting rather than getting all het up fighting for things that wouldn’t then be right for you. Excellent words! Continuing in this inspirational and motivational vein, what things/books/magazines/websites/art inspire you?
M&M: Chris keeps up with the design world by reading Design Week and Computer Arts. He also likes screen-printing and graphic novel style artworks. Kate is inspired by colours and patterns around the home, and is very partial to browsing a wedding blog or two.
WOW: You’ve just listed some of my favourite things there! How did you choose your brand name? Does it have a special meaning?
M&M: Myrtle is a pet name that Katie’s dad calls her mum, and it’s also a flower that has been included in royal wedding bouquets for many years. May is a family name: it’s both Katie’s grandmother’s middle name, and is one of our daughter’s middle names, too. We also hoped that the alliteration would make us more memorable.
WOW: It’s a gorgeous name. I didn’t know that Myrtle is a flower. I did think the name conjured up an English garden image, so now I know why! I like it lots. Again, another brand name that doesn’t mention what the service is, but rather relies on the connotations and actual sounds within the phrase. I’m coming across this a lot lately, and it’s an idea I really love. A just-for-fun question to finish with – whose stationery would you love to design and why?
M&M: We would’ve loved to have designed wedding stationery for Elizabeth Taylor, King Henry VIII, or anyone who married often, because you would have constant work for years to come! We’re most looking forward to designing stationery for our friends and family (down the line) because there’s nothing like seeing your work dotted about your loved ones’ homes or on your nan’s mantelpiece! Also, if we had a couple like Kelly Cake and Chris Christmas, we’d love that because we love unusual surnames!
WOW: Serial ‘wedders’ would definitely be a meal-ticket! Ah, thank you so much for chatting to me! Your designs are beauties, and it’s been really brilliant getting to know you.