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Who would have thought that POOP emoji coasters would be one of our best selling products at Maker House?!

Crafted by talented maker, Of The Town (OTT), their popularity is a testament to blending pop culture and craft in a timely manner. The savvy and know-how comes from creative force and owner, Sarah Adema. I met with her and little one, Evee, in their quaint Hintonburg home. We discussed how Sarah manages mom-life while running a business – because really, how do you mom’s even do it? 

OTT officially kicked-off 5 years ago while Sarah was enrolled in a design program at Algonquin College. It started as a side hustle with the intention to allow her to work from home and start a family. Like any business, it has been a process of consistent refinement to get it the level of craftsmanship it is now. Starting with notebooks and prints, OTT has shifted mainly to laser-cut creations.

At Maker House, we carry Of The Town's popular poop emoji coasters, wifi signs and bottle cap maps. Sarah shared that supplying to Maker House has given her the confidence to place her products in multiple locations. “Gareth made it such a positive experience that it alleviated so much of my self-doubt.” 

Currently, Sarah works part-time as a graphic designer and runs OTT out of her home. So, I asked her the burning question, HOW?

Here are a few things that make up her recipe for success: 

  1. Prioritization
    Obvious, right? Well, this should be number one on your list. Creating a consistent schedule allows you to optimize the little time you do have. Sarah has certain times of the week dedicated to OTT, work, and creative brainstorming.
  1. Free Resources
    As a mom (or anyone, let’s get real), money can be tight – especially during the holidays. An analysis of your business overhead may allow you to adjust some unnecessary costs. Currently, Sarah uses the CNC Laser at the Centre Point Library. It’s completely free and has allowed her to save thousands of dollars. 
  1. Rethink Nap Time
    Part of Sarah’s success has been finding the right time to get work done. For Sarah, nap time is get your sh*t done time. Trying to juggle a toddler while working is next to impossible.
  1. Efficient Apps
    Getting the right kind of apps is also essential in making your business more efficient. Sarah’s go-to app for project management is Asana. This app will organize your tasks and ensure you get your work done.
  1. Keep Learning
    Keep engaged in your industry. Perhaps you don’t have time as a mom to sit down and read the latest design book, but there are alternatives. Sarah listens to podcasts to keep those creative juices flowing. Her favourites are Etsy Jam, Elise Gets Crafty and Goal Digger. 
  1. Ask for Help
    Sarah’s most insightful tip was to get over the fear of asking for help. Turns out people actually enjoy helping. And remember, you can’t always do it all. “To ask for help is a measurement of courage, not failure.”

All these things go hand-in-hand with the support from family and friends. Sarah kept reminding me that all this has been possible in part because of her husband.

“And if you don’t have a partner, surround yourself with those who share your vision and will help you succeed.”

We’re excited to see what heights Sarah will reach with OTT – we have a feeling she’s just getting started! Her poop emoji ornaments are in stock for the holidays, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled!

Until next time maker-friends!


Alex Preston
Alex Preston

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