by Melanie Arntsen of SqueakyBug Specialties

Introducing Jan and Jack Mauer of Carry The Word

Jan and Jack are hosting a giveaway! The winner will receive this fun little embroidered purse. To be entered to win, visit their shop and come back HERE and leave a comment with your favorite item in their shop. Please make sure to leave your email so we can contact you if you're the winner. The winner will be announced in next week's Wednesday Featured Artist article.
Hi, my name is Jan and my husband Jack and I run a business called Carry The Word. We started making bags 18 years ago and selling them at craft shows in Montana where we lived. We even had our own store for a while. Then we sold the business and moved to Oregon 13 years ago. We didn't think we would be doing that business again, but God had other plans! Through a series of circumstances, we decided to give it another go, this time making Christian products and filling a need we saw for quality Bible Covers with custom embroidered scripture and Christian designs. We also make laptop cases and backpacks with and without embroidery.
How did you get your start on Etsy?
We got our start from our lovely daughter! She has a shop selling cute baby and children's t-shirts. While we have been in business for quite some time and had a website, I had never heard of Etsy. She said, "You guys ought to try it, I bet you would do well." You can check her shop out at Some of her models are my beautiful grandchildren. 

How did you choose your shop name?
We make Bible covers that you carry with scripture verses from God's Word. We trademarked the name Carry The Word as we quite like it!
What does a typical day look like for you?
It starts early! My husband and I get up between 4:30 A.M. and 5:00 A.M., get a quick bite of breakfast and head out the door for a three mile walk. We come back and have our morning devotions together. While he showers and gets ready for his outside job, I do a little Bible reading. Once he is out the door, I have my morning prayers, then shower and start my day. I check email and convos and reply to any that I need to. I do a little cleaning, straightening of the house, then head out to run errands and mail any orders that we may have. When I get back it's time to work on orders, or if the sun is shining to get some pictures of new items. Hubby calls at lunch to check how things are going, then I take a short nap. One of the luxuries of working on your own schedule! Afternoons may be spent on orders, taking more pictures, listing items and answering convos. I serve as a deaconess at my church and one of my duties is taking a special interest in the widows of our church. So afternoons may be spent giving one of my ladies a call, or even taking them out for lunch on occasion. I get so much more out of it than I give. The elderly have so much to teach us. They are precious to me. In spring and summer, you will find me working in my garden. It is one of my favorite places to be. I lose complete track of time when I'm there! When Jack gets home, it's time for dinner. Then if we have embroidery to do, we do it together. We have an industrial machine and there is nothing it can't do! It is however, very complicated to operate and best if both of us are there to run it. I may work on the computer for a while and Jack may work on orders. He is an excellent sewer! Then we may watch an hour of TV before it's lights out at 9 PM. We certainly are not night owls!
If you could be anywhere in the world for one day, where would it be?
Hawaii! I love it! There is something about the sea, sand, palm trees and all those tropical things that just makes me happy. We will be visiting again in May and I can't wait!
What is your favorite Bible verse?
"Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." I Thessalonians 5:16-18  I'm a pretty happy person most of the time, so being joyful is easy. I think if we can pray continually and give thanks even in the most difficult of circumstances, we are acknowledging that God is in control of everything, even if we don't understand what we are going through at the time. He works out His plan in His timing. We just have to trust and obey.
What is your favorite Etsy item listing to feature?
Bible covers with custom verses. I love a customer's reaction when they realize they can have their special verse, the one that has meaning for them on their Bible cover. That they can choose the color of thread for the embroidery and make it like no one else's. I love to hear how pleased they are when they receive their special cover made just for them!
Where can we find you on the web?

WINNER! The winner of the glasses case from Lynn Caldwell of Got U Covered chosen by is CarriesCustomDesigns!  Congratulations! You will both be receiving a convo soon.

Comments (9)

On April 13, 2011 at 10:11 AM , Butler Pottery said...

Jan and Jack So nice to hear about you and your bible covers etc. I have marked you as a favorite.

On April 13, 2011 at 11:47 AM , Princess Daffy said...

Jan is such a sweetheart, and those bible covers are lovely! I like the red one (my fave) because our God IS so AWESOME!
Great getting to know more about this great couple who love the Lord.

xox, Daffy

On April 13, 2011 at 12:21 PM , Debi - Tink's Treasure said...

I have been a fan of Carry The Word for quite some time now. I love all your bible covers and backpacks. I see you now have Xlge laptop cases too, nice!Its so nice to know more about you both. Here's my favorite. I love this color green & am a big fan of Celtic Crosses.
E mail is

On April 13, 2011 at 1:58 PM , Miss Sarah said...

It's so nice to "meet" you! I LOVE your Bible covers and someday when I have some extra money, I want to purchase one!

Thanks so much for the giveaway!
joyfullysewn at gmail dot com

On April 13, 2011 at 8:20 PM , Art and Sew Forth said...

I just love these interviews! What a wonderful life you shared. So full of meaning. Thank you. I do love this Small Turquoise Backpack Purse. Very pretty and practical!

On April 13, 2011 at 9:07 PM , Jennifer Kistler said...

Great interview! I go to the same church as Jan (and Jack), and often sit sat the same table at Bible Study when I go. She is such a neat lady. :-) I'd like to have a custom Bible case made someday.

On April 14, 2011 at 10:07 AM , Sue Runyon said...

Carry The Word has been one of my favorite shops since I started on Etsy. So great to learn more about Jan and Jack. I love it that you take care of the widows in your congregation. I'm sure they do too!

On April 14, 2011 at 12:59 PM , MYSAVIOR said...

You and your hubby are such wonderful people. I could not pick a favorite in your shop since I love all of the Word.


On April 14, 2011 at 4:09 PM , CarriesCustomDesigns said...

I love that you work together!! May God continue to bless you both! Wonderful interview!