If you are searching for the perfect Christmas gift for the creative people in your life, look no further than the Ottawa based company Little Miss Mason. During the summer of 2015, Rachelle Bélanger and her sister, Nicole, created their company to share their love of crafting with the local community. The two young women began their entrepreneurial journey with a dream of one day being part of their local farmer’s market and that goal was what set off their creative spark, which soon flared into the success their business is today. Little Miss Mason specializes in crafting mason jars for everyday use while still maintaining a sense of lightheartedness and comfort in one’s decorating scheme. “From vintage vases and elegant candles, to rustic bathroom sets, bohemian terrariums, kids loot jars, and just about everything in between, our goal is to bring modern simplicity into home decor and gift giving,” Rachelle explains.
When queried about when she and her sister were bit by the crafting bug, Rachelle responded, “we grew up around a craft table, creating things together since as long as we can remember (and according to home videos, even before we can remember!).” Both women credit their parents for their interest in creative projects because they always made sure the sisters had a space dedicated to working and creating. “As we got a little older, we began making craft products to sell at kids craft fairs in the community. We always look back on these moments with fondness, so we find it only natural that our favourite childhood pastimes blossomed into a local business.”
Outside of their adventures in crafting, Rachelle spends her time teaching, she is currently leading a class of second grade children. Nicole is studying bio-medical engineering at the University of Ottawa and is half-way through her degree. Rachelle states “having both studied sciences at the University level, Little Miss Mason has allowed us a creative, artistic outlet where we can combine both our common and unique interests and skill sets”. So far, both sisters have received tremendous support from their family, friends, and the community with regards to their initiative. Despite their non-business oriented backgrounds, the sisters find this venture a learning process and have learnt to work as a team in a whole new capacity that helps them thrive with their business.
The greatest challenge for Rachelle and Nicole has been spreading the word about their business and they are also working to develop better venue contacts in order to showcase their products in more visible locations. However, they are both proud of their ability to keep their company going, “from the first day we ignited the idea, we have never lost momentum in keeping our business alive.” Infact, they aim to maintain that momentum in the future, “we are more excited and invested in our business with each passing day.”
With knowledge of mason jars being popular product in home décor world, it was only natural that they got inspired to use mason jars as their choice-crafting medium. When queried about whether they felt their company was attached to the ‘hipster’ movement, Rachel states, “we tend to describe the overall style of our creations as “country chic”, where we combine rustic beauty with modern simplicity. Having grown up in the city and moved to now live rurally, we find that this style is an accurate reflection of who we are!”
Little Miss Mason’s products make use of all aspects of the Mason jar including the lids, “Our goal [was] creating an ‘everything mason jar’…often, we paint the rims to compliment the vases. We also use the full lids to create our own tea-light candles to use on their own, or to place in our large vases,” however, Rachelle did remark that they prefer to use novelty or vintage mason jars so that the true essence and look of the jar is maintained. “Occasionally, we will make novelty products with the lids or rims; for Halloween we used several rims to create a pumpkin centerpiece but we prefer to build something around [a jar] than altering the jar itself.”
As they look to the future, Rachelle and Nicole hope that people will begin to recognize and request their products to add a touch of comfort and creativity to their homes. For more information about the company check their official website at Little Miss Mason, on Instagram (@littlemissmasons) and on Facebook. “If you see us at a local craft show, please drop by and say ‘Hi!’” encouraged Rachelle in closing.