Alberta has some great style—and some awesome, creative, hardworking entrepreneurs. Here are just a few artists turned business people ATB wants to celebrate.
Connor Curran and Dustin Paisley are the duo behind Local Laundry, an apparel company devoted to making clothes that represent Calgary and its communities. In fact, they like to call themselves a clothing company that builds community.
“It started back when I was studying in Sweden. I did my MBA there, and while I was travelling around Europe, I saw all these shirts that represented where people came from. I wanted something like that for where I was from, for Calgary,” Connor said.
Dustin joined Connor back in November 2015, and they incorporated as a company in February.
A key value for the pair is collaboration with other local passionate Calgarians in the community, from working with local photographers, to designers, to printing companies to writers.
They’ve even worked with ATB and LuluLemon. Plus, 10 per cent of their profits go to local charities their customers help choose.
“It’s been a heck of a lot of fun. We both love this city so much, and the community,” Dustin said.
Hit up locallaundryapparel.com and use the discount code ATBLovesLocal and get a free Local Laundry hat to rep that YYC love.
Ryan Mahe of HandCraftedYEG, a brand new business, works with his customers to design and build custom furniture made from wood. What he creates is beautiful—and he does everything from cutting boards to dining room tables.
“Giving someone a beautiful product that’s of the highest quality is my reward. I work relentlessly to make sure everyone is blown away by each and every project no matter the size,” he said.
Ryan combined his lifelong love of art with his skills and experience in the commercial construction industry to create HandCraftedYEG.
“I’m able to be artistic and creative while still being able to build something from nothing, and feel accomplished at the end of a project.”
Plum Design is a home décor store and a residential interior design firm. Jenna Pryor, co-owner and interior designer, started the business because she loves interior design—and she opened the store to help bring it to her community.
“Sometimes the field is intimidating to people, so the store helps you get a sense of who we are. Maybe you don’t want a designer yet, but you might get some of our pillows, and then an antique, and then feel more comfortable engaging with our design services,” Jenna said.
Jenna and her business partner Pamela Freeman prioritize sharing the story behind each item they carry.
“Often our baby items are created by moms who are working to bring income into the family,” she said.
Most of their products come from Canadian designers and companies. The pair go to Europe once a year and bring back antiques they like, as well.