Being an avid stationery collector usually results in one particular habit—hoarding. That was the problem faced by Chrystin Choo who couldn’t resist all the cute stationery items displayed in various stores. She ended up purchasing them ardently despite knowing they would most likely never be used.
So one day, her husband gave her a suggestion. Why bother spending money on stationery when she could create her own and guarantee a generous supply of pretty products she could keep while make a living out of it too?
Thus, the journey of Salt x Paper began.
Behind The Brand
As you may guess, the name ‘Salt x Paper’ is derived from the words ‘Salt and Pepper’ which as everybody knows, are condiments used to add flavour to food. Chrystin wanted the same concept with her range of stationery; she wanted to add that ‘visual flavour’ to people’s daily lives through the designs of their stationery items, particularly their notebooks.
Also, besides being an enhancer, salts are also vastly known to be preservatives. This is another concept Chrystin adopted into her products as she wanted their stationery to be tools that can help preserve ideas, stories and memories. All these ideas swam through her mind while she envisioned what her stationery range would be like and her husband supported her every step of the way.
“We talked and dreamt about it for about three months and about a month later, we found ourselves at the SSM office, registering Salt x Paper as an official business. Salt x Paper was officially started on the 7th December 2015,” said Chrystin.
As of now, they have notebooks, stickers and greeting cards all with personally drawn designs from 3 Malaysian designers chosen by Chrystin and all at an affordable price, which is sure to please those who enjoy collecting cute stationery for the fun of it.
Bringing Doodles To Life
“I personally love notebooks, cards, lettersets, wrapping paper—anything paper-related. I enjoy seeing beautiful designs and pretty illustrations. It makes me happy!” said Chrystin.
She reveals how she had always been drawn to unique designs. But despite her immense love for everything cute and adorable, she was no artist, which left her a little stuck on how she would go about bringing her products and visions to life.
So she began her search for talented designers she personally favoured and contacted them for collaborations. Chrystin does not wish for Salt x Paper to be limited to any theme or style when it comes to the designs they choose to be featured on their products. She however admits that even though she may work with others, her main designer will always be her husband.
“We go with whatever that looks cool and pretty! Every designer has their own style which is appealing to different people. The more the merrier!” said Chrystin.
When asked about what they believe sets them apart from other stationery brands, Chrystin responded, “I believe that our quirky designs and original illustrations are what makes our paper goods stand out from the rest. We also make sure the quality of the finishing, with our sewn-bound pages and premium grade paper, make all the difference and satisfy our customers.”
Venturing Into Business
It’s always fun when what began as a hobby turns into a business but the journey is never truly a smooth sailing process. For Chrystin, she finds one of the biggest challenges she faced was finding the correct retail partners and distribution channels to sell their merchandise as penetrating into the commercial market is never easy.
“As a small, home based business, of course it doesn’t start off easy. But we are so thankful for the internet as online shopping is so accessible these days. That being said, having an online store can be a logistics nightmare too when dealing with shipping, especially international orders,” shared Chrystin.
But despite these hardships, the response has been positive so far. Customers have gushed about their love for the designs chosen as well as the quality of the notebooks, the pride and joy of Salt x Paper.
This spurred this husband-and-wife tag team to push forward and bring even more products such as art prints, journals, stock paper, gift wrappers and the list goes on. Their next goal however is to hopefully be stable enough to have their own brick and mortar shop and expand internationally too.
Feature Image Credit: Chrystin Choo Facebook