A passion for paper craft

Career & Education

A passion for paper craft

Sunday, December 29, 2019

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At a glance, anyone can tell that Nakeeta Nembhard is a stylish creative. Judging from the way in which she arranges her bouncy bob hairstyle, to her well-tailored suits and varying shades of matte lipsticks to complement her outfits, she looks like her own human canvas.

Apart from always dressing the part and putting her fashionable pieces together daily, the group marketing manager at The Jamaica National Group, dabbles in creative craftsmanship. She creates custom, handcrafted special occasion cards and scrapbook pages from various types of paper.

“Eight years ago, a former co-worker invited me to a scrapbooking event, because we both shared an interest in all forms of stationery. When we walked into the room, I was amazed because on a big table, was everything that you could think of, relating to paper craft,” she said.

At that event, Nembhard learned how to do a scrapbook layout and by the end of the day, she had made her first scrapbook page, which she still has today. Soon afterwards, she started to buy scrap kits, which included a variety of paper craft and began doing scrapbooking as a hobby. In 2013, she started designing cards for her family and friends, as a form of therapy and leisure. However, she always received excellent reviews on the look and creativity of the pieces.

Nembhard's cards include various types, shapes, sizes and textures of paper, which are decorated with a variety of items such as, glitter, pearls, lace trimmings and journaling cards, which she sources online. A photo can also be added to the card.

And although she was continuously encouraged to make a business out of her talent, for five years she shied away from it.

“For me, making cards is a very personal activity, and I normally know the persons who I'm making them for. A lot of thought goes into how it is put together so I've always avoided doing it for people I don't know,” she explained.

After one final push from a friend, she started her business — Roseberry Paper Company, making Valentine's Day cards.

“I didn't really expect the volume of requests I received for Valentine's Day cards. I had to close orders because it was overwhelming. I made about 35 cards and some people ordered more than one. Every time I delivered an order, someone would see it and make an order too,” she said.

The marketer, who hopes to one day start and operate her own stationery company, added that no two cards are the same and each card is as unique as the person for whom it is made, with elements of the individual's personality being creatively captured in the design.

Currently, she designs three standard sizes: A2, gatefold and minis – 5 x 4 , 5 x 7, and 4 x 4 respectively. She also makes box cards, which are 3D cards that fold flat, but open up in different shapes; album cards, which are four scrap book pages of photos put together; as well as gift tags and customised gift cards. The costs range from $500- $10,000 based on the item and design; and can take anywhere from 20 minutes to days to create.

Roseberry Paper Company was among the host of Jamaican artisans featured at A Jamaican Made Christmas, a two-day event held November 30 to December 1 at the AC Hotel by Marriott Kingston.

A catalogue of Nembhard's cards can be viewed on Roseberry's Instagram page: www.instagram.com/roseberrypaperco/.

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