Newly Sharpened Pencils

Newly Sharpened Pencils

The question we are asked most often is where the name “Kate & Birdie” came from. It may seem unusual to name a company after cinematic characters. After all, “You’ve Got Mail” isn’t exactly noted as a classic in the world of cinema – but it is inspired by one. And film is a large part of our inspiration. The 1998 version is based on Ernst Lubitsch’s 1940 classic, ¬†“The Shop Around the Corner”. A magical¬†story set in Budapest at Christmastime, it’s a romantic film about anonymous love letters exchanged between two gift shop employees.

It may not seem surprising then that a story about the art of correspondence, beautiful penmanship, and the exchange of love letters would inspire the name for a company founded in social stationery. This film celebrates the written word, hanging on to that vintage typewriter and sending bouquets of sharpened pencils in the fall. It was the way in which its main character Kathleen (Kate) and her shop assistant Birdie ran their charming bookstore, The Shop Around The Corner (aptly named after the original film’s title), that struck a chord with us. Customers were considered close friends and employees were treated like members of the family. Each of their products were chosen thoughtfully, held beauty and carried a story. It was with these values in mind that we created Kate & Birdie Paper Company.

ps: We love this post on “You’ve Got Mail” in the Living In series by Design*Sponge.