Just off Western Ave on the backside of Pike Place Market sits a small shop bursting at the brim with creativity and charm. The Paper Feather, owned and operated by Jennifer Cullin, is an homage to all things paper.
WHAT’S YOUR BACKSTORY? WHEN DID YOU START CREATING YOUR PAPER ART?
I was a substitute teacher for 8 years and always loved crafting with the kids. I started making cards for friends and family on the side and eventually decided I wanted a permanent change. I started my business online and was working from home in the town of Duvall, but then made the move to downtown Seattle. I knew I wanted my own studio and was walking along Western Ave where I found a storefront/studio space for rent in Pike Place Market. I knew immediately there was something special about the space and was so happy when I got approval to open up my own shop!
She opened up Valentines Day 2012 with only a few offerings including her handmade cards, postcards, and gift tags. That was 5 years ago and she has now filled the shop to the brim with all of her paper art, expanding to original art, calligraphy, matted prints, a variety of greeting cards, paper flowers, journals, and stationery sets. She also does custom wedding invitations, chalkboards and party/special occasion goods.
What inspires you and your creations?
I try to always keep up with current trends. I also love birds, so they inspire a lot of my work. "The Fat Bird" greeting card was my first creation and he shows up in a few different pieces around the shop now.
I also love to travel and use those experiences as inspiration. My favorite places are probably Paris, Italy, and New Zealand. Great birds in New Zealand.
What is your favorite thing to create?
Probably artwork or calligraphy pieces. I love to just go home and create art without thinking.
Who are your favorite artists in Seattle? Anyone readers should check out?
Brooke Westlund is my neighbor on Western Ave. and I love her art. Alex Achavel is another artist in Pike Place Market I really like. Ethan Jack Harrington has a gallery in Belltown that I love to visit. He creates great oil paintings. Lucca in Ballard is probably my favorite shop in town.
Your work spread across a lot of different mediums, did you start in one area and expand or have you always loved to work with different supplies?
Well everything in my shop is handmade. I hand pick all the paper, sketch out and create all the ideas, hand print all the designs once I know what I want.
I am entirely self taught and have slowly expanded what I work with. I love experimenting with different things. I started with simple methods and have since expanded into more mediums and techniques. Now you can find pieces made with water colors, oils, chalk, and pen. I'm working with resin now with my paintings and love foiling and calligraphy.
Anything coming up in the future we should look out for?
Yes! I am going to start doing calligraphy and card making classes. Look out for more information on this, but essentially I would set out tables and supplies and have wine and snacks and invite people in to learn to create their own paper goods!
I also want to expand my card business into larger markets. I currently have cards at a few places around Seattle (Once Upon a Time, Sassafras, and Bella Umbrella), but would love to sell them to a broader audience.
Hopefully we will see Paper Feather creations across the U.S. soon! We for one cannot get enough of Fat Bird and think the rest of the world should be able to enjoy him too!
Paper Feather is located at 1520 Western Ave and is open Tuesday - Friday from 12 - 3 PM. If you are interested in Jennifer's wedding services you can email her for an appointment at email@example.com.
You can also find her at the Pioneer Square First Thursday Art Walk in a tent in Occidental Park.