Tuckamore Design is a very small handcrafted card and print company based in Buffalo, New York. I'm a Canadian transplant, originally from Newfoundland. I've been a printmaker for 15 years, almost as long as I've been an architect. I never formally studied art, but I've taken classes from a handful of amazing artists at Dundarave Print Workshop in Vancouver, BC, and NSCAD in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

I love paper, especially since I spend a lot of hours every day working on a computer for my other business, Design Synergies Architecture.

I also love to create handcrafted greeting cards for everyday and seasonal occasions. When the inspiration hits (and I have time), I make the occasional original print. Every piece is printed by hand or on an etching press.

In the early days, my prints and cards were featured at the Canadian Craft Museum, the Craft Association of British Columbia shop, and various exhibits in Vancouver and Halifax. My cards have been sold in shops in the Maritime Provinces, Buffalo, NY, and most recently in Martinsburg, West Virginia! Through my Etsy site, my cards have been sent all over the world.

My work is influenced by Celtic and Art Nouveau design, by Scottish architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh, and by the Arts & Crafts movement. I found inspiration for several years in my front porch container garden in the Elmwood Village in Buffalo, and now I'm daydreaming of spring in my new backyard garden.

My favourite medium is linoleum block printing, especially blind embossed prints (deeply impressed and printed without ink). I'm about to embark on a watercolour adventure, and I'm wondering how that will find its way into my printmaking....

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Busy summer so far

Etsy's "Christmas in July" promotion kept me busy for most of July, trying to keep up with orders (I know, what a problem to have!).  I sold a lot of last year's holiday cards, which made space in the studio for this year's batch - soon to be starting up again.  My Snowflake card was the biggest seller - I sold every last one of them, and had to stop relisting it!  I won't be making any more of them until September.

I also joined an Etsy team, Unique Women in Business (UWIB), which has been great.  So many talented and supportive artisans in that group - really happy to be part of it.

As soon as the orders started coming in, I realized just how big a mess the studio had become.  I couldn't find anything!  All of my shipping materials and my files were in a hopeless pile.  It took me about a day and a half to deal with that, but now it's a working studio again.  Good thing, because I have to produce a lot of stuff for an upcoming show in November (Women's Gifts) and for the holiday season.

My shop was featured in at least 6 treasuries on Etsy last month (seriously, I lost count - it was a crazy couple of weeks), which no doubt helped boost sales.  That was very exciting.  Now it's time to start thinking about christmas card designs, and trying to find winter inspiration in 80+ degree weather....(this photo was taken in Newfoundland after a late winter ice storm).

I ordered some promotional postcards from VistaPrint, which arrived yesterday.  They look great, and now I have to finish my list of places to send them!  I ordered them to promote my work to retail shops.  My plan is to send them out to a selection of shops where I think my work might fit very well.  That's a tough thing to figure out - you never really know if a shop owner is going to like the few photos on the postcard enough to look at your website, but it's worth a shot.

Have to get them in the mail before I head out on vacation in a couple of weeks - a road trip to Maine, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.  I'll be checking out some shops along the way.  I already found a lovely irish shop in Portsmouth, NH, that I want to visit. 

I'd love to cut back on shows and increase my wholesale market.  That's one of my business goals for this year.  My original big goal, when I first wrote my business plan, was to recoup the investment in my press!  I'm getting closer to that!

And as of October 9th, Tuckamore Design will be 1 year old!  I'm going to do a special promotion in my Etsy shop for that, but I'm not sure exactly what yet. 

But before that, my birthday is on August 5th and I'm going to feature free shipping all day on Thursday.

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