“Wouldn’t it be cool if….” One sentence that started like that, and the next you know, Mortise & Tenon was created.
How often have you heard someone discussing their business, using statements like, “I didn’t see what I wanted anywhere else, so I made my own.” It makes sense, and it’s surprisingly true. Mortise & Tenon started with the desire to create a unique shopping experience in our city, one that included local artisans and craftspeople, and highlighted some of the amazing talent the Queen City had to offer. We wanted to create a modern general store, where you could find unique clothing, handmade home décor, handcrafted jewelry, and stunning custom furniture; a place where you could find everything you need to outfit your home and your life. We wanted to create someplace a little off the beaten path from the big box stores, but still accessible enough for everyone to find something that they truly loved inside our doors. The idea was exciting, and with that one sentence, we were dreaming of a business that was ours.
We just didn’t realize that from the first day dream to signing lease papers on a space would be less than a month. Whoops. What can we say? We’re four people who don’t do well with sitting still.
We just loved the idea of owning our own business, creating a fun little spot to bring in all the kinds of things we would love to decorate our own homes with, and supporting the local arts scene in this city. It’s a small city, and we know so many talented people; we wanted to find a way to bring all of these ideas, passions, and people together to do that. Plus, we wanted to feature some of our own work. Eric founded Oleson Woodshop in 2011, and has been handcrafting furniture and home decor non-stop ever since. By folding Oleson Woodshop into Mortise & Tenon, and adding in-house metal fabrication, we are able to create stunning works of functional art for your home. We’re passionate about promoting local shopping, and we strive to source reclaimed materials from local areas. The rich history of the Prairies provides us with one of a kind building blocks with which to give new life to forgotten things, breathing new purpose into the physical past.
So that’s where we’re at; we’re planning, building, working, ordering, and getting excited for our opening. We’re also sweating, getting dirty, not sleeping, and spending a lot of money. But most importantly, we’re moving from dreaming to doing. We value good quality, hard work, and a dedication to living your life with purpose and passion, and we think our store will demonstrate that. Past all the planning and renovating and sleepless nights is the excitement to do something new and to share it with the community we love. We are covered in paint and splinters, and it’s totally worth it.
We want to showcase passion, and the drive to work your ass off to do what you love. Going after a dream is not a fluffy, inspirational picture; it’s hard work, dedication, and a love for your craft, whatever your craft may be. It’s being willing to take the plunge, no hesitation, and fight like hell to just go for it. And when the drywall dust settles and we can open our doors, we want nothing more than to show off our hard work to all of you.
We have never done this before, and it’s been an adventure so far. It’s a little overwhelming, but it’s also terrifyingly awesome. For you, we just hope it’s awesome.