We're designers, so of course we have an obsession with paper. When we discovered Lynn + Lou, an online paper store and design company run by two sisters, we knew we needed to reach out and ask them to join our Dynamic Duo series.
Lynn and Lou are both the owners and the designers for the company and have been designing for over 9 years. They specialize in wedding invitations, home decor, journals and so much more. The two say, this company has been a dream come true. They've always wanted to work together and now they get to do just that every single day.
Not only are these sisters business partners, they're best friends who are working together from different states (sound familiar?! Lindsay is in Dallas and I'm in Nashville). Read on to learn more about these lovers of bright colors + patterns and the happiness and challenges they face working together.
How do you collaborate together?
McKenna: We both wear the hat of co-owner of Lynn and Lou, that hat has many patches, designer, marketer, technical support, photographer, brand specialist. We both do a little bit of everything. Work doesn't always feel like work when you have your bestie by your side.
Richelle: We both have our strengths in the business. McKenna (Lou) is brilliant at marketing and working with clients. Richelle (Lynn) is better at behind the scenes work: website, store details, etc. We both love how the differences in our designs work together to create a very cohesive line of products. We are very versatile in our skill sets, which makes every project exciting and different. Lou is really the yin to my yang!
Why did you decide to do what you do as a duo versus going solo?
McKenna: We have always wanted to work together, and when I also decided to study graphic design, all of the cards fell into place. We dreamt up this company several years ago and I wouldn't even dream of doing it with anyone else let alone by myself. We both bring a different style to our invitations and to the company. I think that the melding of our two styles makes Lynn + Lou the magic that it is.
Richelle: I personally love McKenna's courage to grab life by the horns. She is fearless in getting what she wants. She is so confident which has made me feel more confident as an artist as well. She is driven to succeed while still holding to her values, spending time with her family, and being a supportive sister/business partner. I knew that going in to business with her would be a fantastic adventure.
What’s one challenge you have you faced in collaborating?
McKenna: Honestly, I haven't found that there has been one. We are both mom's, matter of fact, we both became moms around the same time, so needless to say there were days when one of us was on her A-game, and days when the other wasn't. I think that fact that we are best friends and not just business partners helped us through this part of our lives, being new mommies and new business owners. We have both had to pick up the slack for the other at one time or another. But we never keep score. We just always know that if one of us has to put the company second or even third for a bit, that the other one will understand and pick up the slack.
Richelle: There is a challenge in running a business together over long distance. With McKenna in Fresno and me in Boise, things can be a little difficult in getting our schedules to align. However, we have learned to plan and be flexible when life gets out of control.
What's surprised you the most about your collaboration?
McKenna: How easy it has been to give each other constructive criticism. I am not the kind of person who likes to give people CC, its not my jam, and I always tend to feel awkward. I'll do it if I have to but I'd rather not. With Richelle, I thought that would be even harder, I thought it would be near impossible. But something switched when we started working together. I started seeing her projects as my own and I knew that with us both putting in our two cents, the project would be even better. So I learned to tell her exactly how I felt about projects and she did the same for me. Now I encourage her to fine-tooth all of my work and vice versa. Our CC makes us better designers and I feel like it has helped us grow as business partners, sisters and friends.
Richelle: Being a business partner was actually more enjoyable than going at this alone.
Who’s your favorite dynamic duo? Fiction or nonfiction. Why?
McKenna: Am I nerdifying myself to the max by saying Frodo and Sam? I love their friendship, I love that they are always there for each other and pick each other up. Okay, excuse me now as I curl up on the couch with some popcorn and LOTR!
Richelle: Phineas and Ferb. Yes, I know. But this duo is completely amazing! I love how imaginative they are and how nothing keeps them from finding creative solutions. I think if more adults had that kind of out-of-the-box thinking, we would have a far better world.