Laurie Singleton spent her kids’ childhood working 80 hours a week as a truck driver and a single mom. After a move to Clovis two years ago and with a granddaughter on the way, Singleton decided enough was enough — she was finally going to turn her screen printing and crafting hobby into a career.
“I didn’t get to do a lot of things with my kids because I was out there supporting them financially and making a living,” she said. “When Dakota was born, I didn’t want to do that again. I want to watch my grandchildren grow up. We wanted to turn Print Happens from a part-time business into a career change.”
Print Happens, a bright and cheerful boutique that opened last month on Clovis Avenue between 3rd and 4th streets, will celebrate with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 19, followed by grand opening games, raffles and giveaways all day long.
Print Happens can print and personalize more than 800,000 promotional products.
“Anything we can print on, we can do,” Singleton said.
High-quality banners run $3.99 per square foot and feather banners are also available.
“Our banner business has gone crazy,” Singleton said. “Everyone has commented that our banners are top quality and the price is right.”
T-shirts start at $8 each. The shop also specializes in party favors, decorative tiles, glassware and vinyl car stickers.
“We were screenprinting out of our house for family and friends, and it evolved and we got a little busier,” Singleton said. “When we started getting repeat customers, we knew we were doing it right.”
Laurie’s son, Kyle Singleton, is the shop’s graphic artist although he also works another full-time job outside of Print Happens. Her daughter, Terra Lovelace, is the sales and marketing manager and is being taught graphic design by her brother.
Lovelace’s husband, Kennith Rupe, helps out in the shop as well, and his daughter, Kaylee Rupe, has even gotten in on the business.
She’s an eighth grader at Reyburn Intermediate School and designs shirts in the style of Penny-Tees, a fictional business made famous on the tween Nickelodeon show iCarly, Lovelace explained.
“They just stick two random words together and print it on a t-shirt,” she said.
Their small business caters to small and large orders.
“A lot of businesses have big minimums,” Singleton explained. “But we want bachelorettes to be able to come in and ask for 10 bachelorette shirts, or glittered wine glasses with initials on it, or just one tile with the wedding date on it. We want other people who can’t make the minimums to know that we’re here for them.”
The shop can also print large orders for sports teams, businesses, clubs and more. Singleton and her family have a big heart for animal rescues.
“We’ve done a free banner for the (Labrador Retriever Rescue of Fresno) after theirs was stolen,” Singleton said. “And anything sold in that front room, a portion of the proceeds go back to rescues.”
Small businesses and crafters have displayed their wares along Print Happens’ bright walls in the “rescue room,” which the shop sells on consignment. Customers can pick up anything from furniture and home decor to cooking aprons to baby bonnets and booties. Singleton also creates one-of-a-kind wreaths and garlands.
The first-time grandmother’s long hours on the road have been replaced by joyful time spent with family, and the peacefulness in the shop is palpable.
Singleton’s mom, Mary Ann Thomson, visits the shop frequently and 10-month-old Dakota Rupe can be seen toddling around the store in her pink Minnie Mouse walker.
“We’ve got four generations here most days,” Singleton said. “Dakota is here every day; I get to watch her grow.”
325 Clovis Ave., Suite 107
Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday; closed Sunday