SOUTH JORDAN — As Kelli Lindquist found her way back to bed after being up with her young son Cash, she found herself processing the idea of opening her own craft shop. She had recently created a wood cutout design for a friend and thought she might be on to a unique style. As a stay-at-home mother, Lindquist had often desired to help financially, especially with her husband in optometry school. This idea seemed to be an answer.
"I had a very strong impression that I needed to open up an Etsy shop," Lindquist said. "I knew it was the Holy Ghost prompting me."
Now more than two years later, Lindquist, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has successfully grown her business beyond anything she could have imagined — enough that she must turn down orders each month in order to keep up with the demand. Although she couldn't be happier about the success of her product, Lindquist notes that building the business together with her husband has been the greatest blessing of all.
The Trendy Timber
Upon feeling prompted to begin her business, Lindquist began experimenting with her 3D wood canvas designs. She had previously borrowed a saw to make a wood cutout of a state that she placed on a canvas to hang on her wall. The design was unique, and Lindquist saw the design's potential. Lindquist hoped to produce something that would be trendsetting and exciting. When describing this, Lindquist's mother came up with a name for her shop, The Trendy Timber.
Although money was tight, Lindquist's husband Scott supported her idea and purchased their own scroll saw and supplies. Kelli began designing mock-ups of wood cutouts, from logos to LDS temples and family names. She soon found her greatest passion came when designing wood pieces with baby names for nurseries or children's rooms. This idea also became her most popular design and has become her main focus.
"I love seeing the sweet photos I get from customers and their babies and nurseries," Lindquist said. "As a mom, I know how decorating a nursery is the absolute funnest part when expecting. So I'm so honored and thrilled to have a part of it."
Lindquist and her husband began working together as a team, with Kelli focusing on the design and Scott cutting, staining and sanding the wood projects. Kelli Lindquist chose to use Etsy, an online marketplace where crafts can be sold, in order to sell her product. She also created an Instagram account in order to share pictures of her different selections.
"When we first began it was honestly just something for me to do on the side and possibly just pay for our utility bill," Kelli Lindquist said. "But it has succeeded beyond our wildest dreams."
The shop officially opened in January 2015 and has since profited from more than 3,500 sales. With a five-star rating and more than 850 reviews on Etsy and more than 65,000 followers on Instagram, Lindquist's business has taken off. Within the first year, Lindquist realized they could not keep up with the demand and chose to only open the shop for orders once a month. With such a high demand, orders are usually full within 30 minutes to an hour of each opening.
"Because my husband is in optometry school right now and we have only our evenings to work, and moving around with rotations, we haven't been able to grow and expand as much as we've wanted to," Lindquist, whose husband is currently completing a rotation in Utah, said, "which is why we do have to limit what we take each month. We do have plans after graduation to make this much bigger. It's amazing how many people are willing to wait for our restocks and patiently wait for their handmade original and unique piece from us."
A grateful heart
Lindquist recognized that her business would not be where it is without the support of family and friends, from her mother's ideas to her sisters being her first clients. But most of all, she's grateful for her own young family.
"What I enjoy most about this business is I've been able to do it by my husband's side," Lindquist said. "It's so fun being able to do something together that we both enjoy. We love what we do and are humbled at what our business has become."
Since opening the shop, Lindquist has always made it a priority to also be the best mother she can be to her two children.
"Being a mother is the most important role that I have," Lindquist said. "Ever since I can remember, being a mother is all I have wanted to be. As The Trendy Timber has grown, I've made it a priority to be present with my kids and still be a full-time mother. I've been able to balance the two roles, a business owner and mother, by doing most of my work once the kids are in bed. It makes for really late nights but it makes it worth it when I'm being able to be home with my kids watching them grow and learn every day. Sometimes I can include them in my work. They've become great packaging helpers."
Overall, Lindquist expressed gratitude to her Heavenly Father for the talent and opportunity he provided for her and her family.
"When we first started, my husband Scott and I sat down and wrote down all of our living expenses and thought if anything this business could bring in about $50 a month to possibly pay for utilities," Lindquist said. "We are so overwhelmingly grateful that this business has provided so much for us, even paying off our student loans completely. It's incredibly humbling to build a business completely by scratch and build it up on hard work and love."