Soft, supple hands reveal a stash of handmade greeting cards, tucked away in a simple tote. Maudine Buchanan spends hours creating these one-of-a-kind paper creations. She embellishes her cards with tiny paper cut outs and delicate trims that are certain to enchant the giver and the recipient of each creation. While no two are alike, if someone falls in love with one of her designs, she’ll consider taking a custom order, but the thrill she finds in card-making comes from the freedom she allows herself in creating something a little different each time.
“I look through magazines, attend creative workshops and find ideas online to come up with new ideas. I never like to copy anyone’s ideas, but I do incorporate the ideas I find into some of the cards that I design,” Maudine says. It all started several years ago when Maudeen began scrapbooking. Her hobby left her with several scraps of paper that inspired her to begin using the scraps to make cards for friends and relatives. She developed a love affair with paper and today that paper is giving her hours of entertainment and a little income to boot.
“I’m a paperholic,” she laughs. “I don’t need any more paper, but when I see new papers come out I figure out a way to use them.” Although she’s 71 years old, Maudine continues to eagerly seek to learn new techniques for card-making and how to utilize technology in her craft. Her designs can be quite intricate, but she seems to piece them together flawlessly. She has designed cards for tourists visiting Paducah during Quilt Week, as well as a few children’s birthday cards, complete with a shaker full of glitter. Nothing Maudine makes is done half-heartedly.
“People ask me to do personal cards for their friends and families and I always like to know something about the person I’m making the cards for,” Maudine says. She researches their hobbies and interests and makes sure that the card reflects the personality of the person she is making it for. She even spends time researching ideas on what to write in each of her cards.
“The hardest part is sometimes deciding what message to put inside each card,” she says. No matter how challenging that may be, Maudine always seems to find just the right words to say, whether she’s making a card for a recent graduate or designing a get well card for someone who needs a little encouragement to get back on their feet. With so much of her time spent making cards for other people, one might think she’d be tired of it by the time the holidays roll around. But nothing stops Maudine from designing and putting together 60 handmade Christmas cards to send out to her own holiday mailing list each year. Relatives and friends now look forward to seeing what her imagination conjures up.
Every Christmas brings with it a new inspiration and a new collection of keepsake cards. Maudine has spent much of her life working for other people, first as a businesswoman and later ended her career as a social worker after 27 years. With her husband now gone, her card making venture has given her hours of enjoyment, doing what she loves and making a little money while she’s at it. Her cards sell from $5 to $10 a piece, depending on the intricacy of the design she’s created, and can be purchased at Market Pavilion Gift Shoppe located at 112 Broadway.
“Various hobbies led me to do this,” she says. “I’ve always enjoyed arts and crafts and it’s nice to get to do something that makes other people happy.”