This week we get a glimpse into the behind the scenes of Hello Small World - a paper shop with imaginative illustrations and witty greetings. The shop is run by Reese and Jon - a sweet husband and wife duo.
Please introduce yourself and your shop.
We’re Reese & Jon Traves, the couple behind Hello Small World, an illustration & stationery design studio based in the Texas panhandle. We sell our illustrated goods, which include greeting cards, art prints, brooches, etc., at hellosmallworld.etsy.com & hellosmallworldpaper.com as well as several brick-and-mortar shops.
I love that you guys are a couple working together on this venture. How do you split up the responsibilities? Do you both work on the illustrations, or is one the more creative type while the other handles the business side of things?
Reese: Jon does all of the illustrations, but we both work on the creative aspect of the shop, including everything from coming up with ideas for new designs, new products, photography, marketing, etc.
I handle the bulk of the packaging, finances, dealing with convos & emails, & other businessy things.
What's your process for designing new products? Do you start with the theme (say, birthday card), illustration, or quirky greeting?
Sometimes we consult our “idea basket” when we want to work on new products, but oftentimes one of us will get an idea about a new type of product or illustration we want to add to the shop & then many times it will just jump to the top of our list & we will start working on it right away.
Your “Holding Hands” illustration is my favorite – simple and sweet. Do you guys have a favorite card or print?
Jon: One of my favorite cards is the “I heart you more than I heart Re-Runs of Friends” card. It was one of our first ideas that we made into a card when we first started the shop. It combines pop culture with the type of true feelings we think should be conveyed in a card. I also really like the Say Anything Boy print that references the 80s classic.
Reese: I would have to say that one of my favorite prints is our ‘Wander Often Wonder Always’ print in black and white with the mountains. Jon came up with the original phrase & I feel like it is just a perfect summation of how we both feel. We have it framed in our house & it makes me smile every day when I look at it. But, I also really love many of our jaunty animal prints (although I can’t just pick one as my favorite)…this is quite a tough question.
Where do you seek inspiration when the dreaded artist block sets in?
We work in spurts a bit. We come up with ideas for things sporadically & then will just work almost nonstop on ideas until they are finished & once we are done with certain ideas then we might spend the next couple of weeks or so working on our “to do” list of things that also need to be done for the shop –such as photographing, listing new items, & other businessy things. If we don’t have time to work on ideas we write them down on sticky notes & index cards and store them in a basket for when we have time to work on new ideas, whether it be new greeting cards, prints, or just new products in general.
If you're looking to stock up on creative cards, inspiring prints, or an adorable brooch, be sure to check out Hello Small World: