We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelly and Shannon Gustafson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kelly and Shannon, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind k.Patricia’s success is our team – Kelly and Shannon. We are a mother/daughter team and we handle different parts of the business. Kelly is the artist behind all the beautiful designs and Shannon handles the marketing and production side. We have taken our two very different skill sets and combined them to create a unique business model. Our two different backgrounds, Kelly with a design background and Shannon running her own stationery store for 20+ years, gives them the opportunity to bounce creative and business ideas off of each other. We also believe a part of our success comes from our continuous introductions of new products and categories. We do not stick with a scheduled timeline when it comes to releasing new designs rather we generally have a new release every month.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Before k.Patricia even started, Kelly had dreams of being a fashion designer. In high school she took weekend classes at a fashion school in Boston, went to college for fashion design and worked for a couple designers after graduating. After attempting to start her own clothing brand, she realized this was not completely realistic and she fell out of love with fashion design. In the summer of 2018, Kelly moved to Tokyo, Japan with a clean slate (and a bit of fear with what she was going to do next). Still craving to do something artistic, she picked up watercoloring and started to paint on flat notecards for fun in her spare time. After showing Shannon her designs, Shannon came up with the idea to turn them into cards and sell them in her store. And the rest is history! Over these past few years, Kelly’s style has evolved with the help of taking art classes in Japan and constantly practicing everyday. Our designs are simple and sweet. We love a good pun and we absolutely adore a fun, fresh print. When we first started our business, we thought our greeting cards would be our number top seller, but turns out our wrapping paper is number 1 seller! Don’t get us wrong we are always coming up with greeting card ideas, but we get so excited with we can turn into wrapping paper!
Kelly is not the only creative in our business. Shannon also plays a huge part with the creative side. She is the mastermind behind our marketing and she is constantly learning how to improve our marketing strategies. Shannon loves to come up with product picture layouts for emails and loves to come up with new product designs. Without her marketing expertise and her never quit attitude, we would not be successful with our wholesale and retail sites.
After watching Shannon build her own stationery store from the ground up, Kelly never thought she would end up in the stationery world. But she is actually much happier doing this than pursuing fashion. She still gets to design which is her passion and she gets to work with her mom and learn from her. For Kelly it was very tough letting go of a dream she had for over 8 years, but this new redirection was the best thing to happen to her. New doors of opportunity opened, and continues to open, as we grow and expand as a business. “If the plan doesn’t work, change the plan, but never the goal”.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We actually live in two different states at the moment. Shannon lives in Massachusetts while Kelly lives in New York City, but we would like to show off Massachusetts! We would first bring our best friend to the lovely town of Concord. Shannon grew up in Concord and this is where her store is located. It is a very historical town filled with many attractions ranging from Louisa May Alcott’s house to the Old North Bridge. In Concord Center, there are wonderful local shops and restaurants. We recommend Main Street Cafe for lunch, checking out the gift shop Revolutionary Concord and then taking a mid day stroll by Walden Pond. The next stop on our Massachusetts trip would be a day in Boston! We love Newbury Street for its shopping, but the North End has some great spots to check out. Just a quick walk from Quincy Market, you will find yourself surrounded by beautiful brick stone buildings and dozens of Italian restaurants and bakeries. Our top pick would be Modern Pastry with its variety of cakes, cannolis and chocolates. To finish off the week trip, we would hop on the ferry to Nantucket! With their family, Kelly and Shannon have been to Nantucket for many years and it is our number 1 spot when visiting Massachusetts. Any time is perfectly fine when traveling to Nantucket, but we recommend summer time. The foot traffic might be high during this time, but there is more to do in the summer! We would start the mornings off by going to Downy Flake Donuts for their iconic donuts, then head on over to Ladies Beach for an afternoon swim and tan and after the beach drive over to Bartlett’s Farm for fresh groceries. After having a cookout at home, we would drive into town for some ice cream from The Juice Bar and then go for an evening walk along the boardwalk underneath the stars and admiring the boats.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
We definitely want to give a huge shoutout to our customers, friends and family! When Kelly first started designing greeting cards and gift tags it was in very small batches and exclusively sold at Shannon’s store. The response was so overwhelming from our customers in such a tight knit community it became clear this was a business. Once we stepped into the world of wholesale in spring of 2021, we were blown away with all the love and support from our new customers and this continues to this day. To our friends and family, they are the ones who always cheer us on and encourage us to keep on going. They are always supporting k.Patricia whether it be through a retail order, custom wedding invitation or spreading the word of k.Patricia on social media. Without these three key support groups, we would not be where we are today, so we want to say thank you!


Website: www.kpatricia.com

Instagram: @kpatriciadesigns

Facebook: www.facebook.com/kpatriciadesigns

Other: Our wholesale sites: Faire: www.faire.com/brand/b_dyovz0fxsh Abound: http://helloabound.com/kpatriciadesigns Bulletin: https://bulletin.co/brands/k-patricia-designs?sort=created_at_asc&page=1

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