Loud opening applause for .... Bret and Samantha - the owners of AUTHENTIQUE! They have kindly answered some questions about their fabulous, unique and growing company.
Don't forget you can see all their amazing products in the shop here. Keep your eye on the website - we are adding more and more collections every week!
1) Who is Authentique and how long have you been acting on the Crafting Stage? Team Authentique has over 30 years of combined experience in the paper craft industry. We (Bret and Samantha) both have backgrounds in the hobby and craft industry and were contacted by former colleagues who wanted to start a new company centered around quality. Based on Bret’s experience as the former owner of My Mind’s Eye, combined with Sam's experience with training retailers in the industry, we believed people would respond to a new company with a focus on artisan quality and great merchandising. With an entrance back into the industry, we decided not to cut any corners and we were determined to be strong from the start. We love design and felt confident a fresh, new look would create some noise and grab everyone’s attention.
2) Please share with us a brief synopsis of the Authentique story and don't forget to tell us anything that sets you apart. The word artisan describes the meaning behind our brand name, Authentique. The definition of an artisan states: 1. a person skilled in an applied art; a craftsperson. 2. a person or company that makes a high-quality, distinctive product in small quantities, usually by hand and using traditional methods.
Our paper is hand crafted by a fourth-generation family-owned mill and our papers are printed to the highest quality standards by a third-generation family-owned print shop. Our die-cutting technology is unique to us, and it creates maximum value on our accent sheets. When others are cutting back on quality, we have emerged with premium textures and finishes. Unlike the competition, the uncoated adhesive cardstock we use ensures richer, more vibrant colors, creating better coordination with papers. Finally, just 10 items per collection increases inventory turns and doesn’t overwhelm the retailer or consumer.
3) As owners, what part of your job gives you the most joy?
For us (Bret and Sam), there is no separation between work and home. We eat, drink and breathe our company. We put our heart and soul into every product we produce, and the greatest joy comes from seeing retailers sell through our products with ease and seeing the consumer create a project to preserve a moment they hold dear to their heart. The Authentique Paper approach allows the emotion of an event to speak louder than the event itself.
4) Where do you think the paper craft industry is heading and what major trends do you see developing for 2012?
We think the industry will continue to be strong, and with new crafters emerging every day, we are thrilled to be apart of this hart-felt industry. We don’t tend to follow others, and our experience as a group has been that we are the trend setters, not trend followers. For us, we think less is more and sometimes simple is better.
5) How do you use Social Media to keep your audience clapping?
Social Media is large part of business today. It’s admittedly overwhelming to keep up with the latest and greatest social media outlet, but we are learning new techniques everyday. We use social media to keep a pulse on the end user of our products and to stay in touch with our retail partners. Our primary customer base is retail stores all over the world but our fans help us to keep on top of which of our products they love, as well as what they want and need as crafters. If we provide our fans what they are looking for then the retail store will have good success with our lines, and in turn, we’ll all be more successful!
Thanks Authentique. Artfull Crafts are super excited to be partnering with you for the month of April. Keep your eye on our blog posts for daily inspiration, prizes, sketches, a layout kit designed by Authentique especially for us, and another questionaire from their product designer...