We had the good fortune of connecting with Shamese Shular and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shamese, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
At first, exploring this craft wasn’t with the intention of starting a business, rather a way for me to have a way to fill my free time. I was having a rough spot in my career and needed a creative outlet that was totally opposite from how I made a living at my day job. Once I started learning binding styles, I just kept going and started posting on Instagram. I started to try out local markets and the interest grew to a point where I wanted to create a better way for people to request their own, or order more than what I had in person. At first it was Instagram DMs, then I created a website, and it grew more and more from there!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am most proud of not giving up when I made mistakes. I tried a few different binding styles and some of them I didn’t gravitate towards but the stab binding was my absolute favorite. I love how unique it is, and how unlikely people are to find it in most places unless it is a Japanese stationery store. It is still not something that is often seen when you come across binding specialties, and it is an honor for me not only to feature an ancient binding style but to be able to share this with others through modern textile designs, and modern stationery styles.
What really lifts me up are the connections I have made where women that are special to me (even if they don’t know it yet!), end up purchasing a journal for themselves, or for a workshop they are hosting, or to carry in their shop. That is the absolute best compliment, to be part of someone else’s story whether it is someone else building a brand, or someone who needs a space to lay out their thoughts and designs.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would take them through the historical areas of my city, and have a great breakfast downtown. We’d visit New Haven for more great food, and history there as well, and of course we’d hit NYC. Even if you’ve been a thousands times, you haven’t seen it all. There is a wonderful art museum in Ridgefield that I love. It is small enough to not miss anything, but just enough to feel so inspired by their exhibit choices. If it was the right time of year, we’d also visit some orchards, and find some of the local trails to take in some nature.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
All friends that I have made throughout these couple of years through Instagram, have been so encouraging. The entire maker community has an understanding of the next maker without needing to explain. I have been fortunate enough to collaborate with some of these extremely talented women like Rice Paper Designs, Raspberry Room, Wren Bird Arts, Windfall Arts, Six Orange Socks, and more, to create new products that feature both of our skill sets.