Where did the idea to start Impressed come from?
Impressed is based on the idea that photography has so quickly become such a pervasive and creative method of self and social expression. We wanted to help bring the amazing things you create and experience in your digital life of photography, on platforms like Instagram, into your physical space. As a way to express your personality, to show who and what you love, and where you hope to go.
What makes Impressed different?
Because we are focused on your books and prints becoming modern photo decor, we over-deliver on quality. All of our products use premium matte papers and finishes that make our books and prints art-quality. Our books and prints even feel good! We want your photos to serve a function in your home or space, not collect dust. So, for example, our Deco Prints come with Japanese washi tape so you can instantly hang them on your wall and easily change them up. We have recently introduced DIY Deco Kits that help you create mini collages with your prints, to give you fun ideas on how to 'dress up' your walls. We have so many creative and talented customers and they are constantly inspiring us. We want to make it just as easy for everyone to style their photos in a fresh and modern way. We have collaborated with some amazing creatives so far including Papermint Studio (http://www.papermintstudio.com/) and Lark and Linen (http://www.larkandlinen.com/)
Do you have any advice for people starting their own business?
Love what you do because it’s 24-7!
Please describe your workplace.
We have an open office concept in a small but really great building in downtown Toronto. We are a team of 10 people, which includes a development team that we share with another startup in our portfolio. Culture is really important to us so we spend a lot of time interviewing to make sure it’s a right fit. Lunch is also important, we spend a lot of time talking about where we will go for lunch! We have even dedicated one corner of the office across from the entrance for all of our product and Instagram photo shoots so when you walk into the office you never know what you’ll find on the walls.
In your line of work you must come across a lot of many talented instagrammers, who is one of your favourites?
Hmmm, it’s so hard to choose but I am really drawn in by @mrpaddingtonbear - I love seeing through her eyes and how she puts objects together. I am so not a cat person but her cat is half teddy bear so he has won me over! And of course all of our talented Instagram Sellers on the Impressed Print Shop. It’s so much fun to curate a collection of photos from their beautiful feeds.
Please list some of your recommendations for your local city.
I live and work in downtown Toronto and my radius is relatively small. I call it my ‘lifestyle triangle’! It’s hard to keep up with the amazing array of shops, restaurants and cafes in Toronto but here are a few of my favorite places that come to mind:
Seven Lives is a tiny seafood taco joint in Kensington Market with amazing flavours and daily fresh juices for $2!!
If you’re going to Kensington also visit Fika Cafe. A little bit of Swedish chic, a cool backyard patio in the summer and delicious cardamom spiced lattes.
Cluny Bistro in the Distillery District combines a few of my favorite things: beautiful interior design, oysters and champagne.