About the Biz
- Company: Mom & Pop’s Print Shop
- Who we spoke with: Aubrey Magistro Dalton and Chris Dalton, Co-Owners
- Year established: 2011
- Website: Momnpopsprintshop.com
- Social: Facebook, Instagram
Get to Know: Mom & Pop’s Print Shop
Since 2011, Mom & Pop’s Print Shop has been your Charlotte area, family-owned and operated design and print studio. We offer a wide variety of print processes and design services all under one roof. From screen printed apparel to letterpress invitations, we offer a huge catalog of products, each individually hand-crafted by real craftspeople and local artisans. Keeping production in-house means creating brand consistency for each run, as well as fast turnarounds and quick ships to our clients and industry partners.
Our pint-sized team is passionate about tailoring our clients’ products to match their vision and brand. From agency work to milestone events, we design and print customized products of all quantities by hand using a combination of traditional and not-so-traditional methods. We specialize in personalizing the design and print experience by making artisan print methods accessible and affordable to our community members. Simply stated, we love Creative Print.
With so many processes available, our clients are as diverse as our print methods. Start-up brands, agencies, designers, and brides alike trust Mom & Pop’s as their local Charlotte printer as an integral member of their team. Contact us today about your project; we’d love to add you to our print family!
What resource organizations have helped you along the way, and how?
I can’t emphasize this enough, at a local level, the Small Business Center at Central Piedmont is a gold mine of information for budding entrepreneurs and established business owners. They offer free business counseling and seminars, affordable classes for start-ups, and business plan writing and mentorship opportunities. They provided us with some of the earliest resources and tools that helped establish a business strategy and analyze the costs of doing business. Most recently, they helped us navigate the impacts of COVID-19 on small businesses and provided us with resources and information on small business funding.
What business lessons have you learned along the way that you now apply to each new opportunity?
Don’t do work for free, take money upfront, and charge your worth. It seems like pretty obvious advice, but in a creative industry like ours, you’d be surprised how many people ask or assume artwork is free or want to pay after the work is complete. Our society doesn’t make those same assumptions when consulting with other industries. For instance, you don’t work out at the gym and then pay later if you lose weight. People don’t inherently value art + craft. This idea that taking money upfront is unethical is just crazy. Not charging for your time or intellectual property jeopardizes our livelihood and endangers the entire creative industry.
What has been your biggest success to date?
Quite honestly, every day we are elated that we turned this little back-bedroom side hustle into the business it is today. Chris and I always dreamed of having a little shop where we could tinker around, making and creating. We both really believe when you focus your energy on what you really love and work hard at it, anything can happen.
What other small businesses are you inspired by?
There are too many to mention them all, but Muddy River Distillery, Chef Alyssa’s Kitchen, C3Lab, and Veronet Vineyards are all husband and wife teams, so we’re always rooting for their success. In our opinion, the best small businesses are the ones putting in the hard work and doing what nobody else has done before them – they are the trailblazers.
What’s your best advice for someone looking to start their own business?
Follow your dreams, and don’t let anyone get in the way! You’ll hear ‘no,’ lose confidence, and question if it’s worth it, but if you stick with it, you can create something beautiful. However, if you don’t like working hard and solving problems, then owning and operating a business is not for you. We’ve been at this for ten years, and every day is a new challenge – working for yourself takes grit and stamina. Fortunately, hard work can outpace money, smarts, talent, and popularity. Hang in there and don’t give up on yourself!
See how Mom & Pop’s is taking on COVID-19 and how they’re planning for a return – follow their social media for the latest updates. If you’re a small business owner looking for federal, state, or local pandemic-related resources, click here.