Busy Beaver’s Designer and Pre-Production Coordinator, Natalie Peeples, is taking over our Instagram account today to give you a peek into a day in her life. As the person in charge of getting your artwork ready for production, Natalie processes over 100 orders each week– that’s over 5000 every year!
Natalie’s role starts by checking design files to make sure everything looks great, and printing them for our production crew (read about the scheduling step that happens next in our previous “Meet the Beaver” feature with Production Shift Lead, Carrie Vinarsky). Read on for more about Natalie’s workday, her collection of motivating buttons, and the Chili’s margarita she suggests you avoid.
Tell me more about your role here at Busy Beaver— what part do you play in making order?
I set up and design artwork, print orders and prepare them to be sent to production. I also help with the design aspects of other departments and wrangle the printer.
How did you get started at Busy Beaver?
I stumbled across Busy Beaver when I was hoping to move to Chicago and they were hoping to find someone to process button orders. I moved to here from Alabama without ever seeing the Beaver Dam or most of Chicago and I haven’t looked back since (except sometimes during winter!)
Besides working on thousands of button orders, what kinds of things do you do outside of work?
Outside of work I am (learning to be) an improviser. I spend a lot of time taking classes, occasionally performing and most of the time attending shows. I also have a long list of personal design projects, baking projects, and books on hold at the library.
Were you into buttons before you started at Busy Beaver? Since you see so many, what kind of buttons catch your eye?
I had a few buttons before working at Busy Beaver, mostly ones announcing which team I was rooting for. The ones that I collect now are all kinds of designs, buttons that make me laugh, are nicely illustrated or designed, or are especially unique. I’ve realized that I have a shocking amount of cat buttons (for a dog person) and I also have an uplifting and inspiring collection of buttons curated by former Beaver, Brian Weza.
What’s your favorite button from your collection?
My favorite button is one of the few I had prior to working at Busy Beaver. It is a 1” with a honey bear container illustration on it. It was gifted to me on my 21st birthday after spending a very sad lunch at Chili’s, one of the only restaurants close to the summer camp where I worked at the time. Not only do I like the design, but it also makes me smile and is a constant reminder to never spend $11 on the Chili’s Presidente Margarita, even on special occasions.
What’s your favorite part about being a Beaver?
I like getting to see nearly every order that comes through Busy Beaver, and sometimes getting to help people create a button design based on their idea — which is fun. There’s also a good chance that every so often I’ll get to hear the office sing their renditions of the “Forever Stamps” song to the tune of Rod Stewart’s “Forever Young.”