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Greetings from Heidi Louise Smith

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Heidi Louise Smith’s greeting card business, CedarBerry Designs, arose from a difficult time in her life.

The school counsellor and grief specialist was battling against mental-health issues.

“It wasn’t pretty,” she said.

To help herself through it, she turned to an old passion for painting.

“I am always creating things,” she said. “I did my bachelor’s in studio art, and over the years I have dibbled and dabbled in different things. Picking up the paintbrush again was a much needed form of self-care. It allowed me to disconnect from the world.”

She began making greeting cards to cheer not just herself, but also her friends and family. She received such a warm response that she decided to take it to the next level. She launched Cedarberry Designs as a business last October.

It was not her first enterprise. Back in 2018, she ran CedarBerry Botanicals, producing lip balms and other natural cosmetics.

Her cards can now be found at places such as Robertson’s Pharmacy in St George, Par-la-Ville Pharmacy in Hamilton and the Bermuda Craft Market in Dockyard.

Some of her cards mark special occasions such as the birth of a child, Valentine’s Day, or St Patrick’s Day while others are simply funny. One of her cards carries a photograph she took of a white goat with the caption “devoted goatee”.

Devoted goatee, one of Heidi Louise Smith’s humorous designs (Photograph supplied)

“I like my cards to have a Zen feel to them, but humour is important in life,” she said. “Some of the cards are watercolours, while others use photos I have taken in my travels around the world.”

Cards with local images of places such as Warwick Long Bay do particularly well with visitors at the Craft Market in Dockyard.

She was excited when the Bermuda Pharmacy Group agreed to stock her cards a few months ago, but was also a little nervous.

“I knew that they would sell; I just did not know how well,” she said.

To product test, she took some of her cards to Georgia, where she has a house, and sold them at Christmas craft fairs.

“They did really well,” she said.

The cards have also been flying off the shelves in Bermuda.

“I gave one location about 40 cards and they are now down to two,” she said. “That sold within a period of about three weeks.”

The hardest part about the business is just finding the time to make her products.

“I would love to be able to do this all day, but I have a job,” she said. “I work on my cards on weekends, and at night when I don’t have other things on. Even days when I work late, if I am feeling particularly stressed, but not too tired, I will work on them when I get home.”

Getting materials to create with can be a challenge.

“I think anyone in Bermuda who produces anything would also say that,” she said.

To print, Ms Smith uses an eco-friendly printer with colour tanks rather than cartridges.

“You pour in the ink,” she explained. “Between October and February I have printed quite a bit with it, and the ink tanks are still three quarters full. I also use a lot of recycled materials to make my cards. The best place to find supplies is the United Kingdom. The prices are really good there.”

The advantage to printing her own cards is that she can make as many at a time as she likes.

“I can just print out one card, if that is all I need,” she said.

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Published February 27, 2024 at 8:00 am (Updated February 28, 2024 at 8:11 am)

Greetings from Heidi Louise Smith

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