Get to know the creators of Seattle's local, handmade toy company working overtime to inspire joy and wonder.

You're not alone. Turns out, there are many of us whose two favorite things are cats and donuts. But, have you ever thought about combining the two?

Introducing… the Mini Donut Cat by MarninSaylor! The gift of cuteness, hilarity, pause, and companionship for you or someone you love. You can get these pastry pets in every flavor (and yes, with rainbow sprinkles) as a plushie, enamel pin, tote, mask, hat, hoodie, and more. Playtime just got absurdly cute. Check out these Mini Donut Cat pet adoption stories and get your trip to Seattle's beloved Pike Place Market on the docket to become a proud parent.

And don’t just go for the toys, go for the full experience of an interactive, handmade mecca. Owners Skye Saylor and Thomas Marnin, wife/husband duo and self-professed “nerds in love with cuteness, crafting and each other," have a collaborative vision. Go talk to them!

Read on for our interview with Skye as she shares some real talk and the intentions behind MarninSaylor.

Q: We love serendipity and the unexpected. Is there a story, experience, or event unique to MarninSaylor that you want to share?  

When we first opened our small booth in Pike Place Market in the fall of 2013 we were understandably nervous and unsure about how our somewhat strange products would be received. We went into our first day of selling with no expectations: whatever happens, happens. We were just excited to be there! The day started a bit slow but we had a few sales here and there. In the afternoon a group came up to our table, took one look at our paltry set-up and limited offerings ... and promptly bought every single thing we had available to sell! We had only a few products back then and stocked only a couple of each, so that sale was probably less than $200. At the time, though, it was absolutely mind blowing! People liked our stuff and wanted to buy it! That day was a great start to our Pike Place Market journey and really gave us the confidence we needed to continue growing our business.

Q:  What is one way MarninSaylor is unique to its location? 

We are actually the first business to ever make the leap from a Pike Place Market craft day stall to a permanent retail location within the market. From the beginning we always tried to really push the boundaries of what was possible within the confines of a tiny, mobile booth and our store nowadays is no exception. We are deeply rooted in the market, having been there for over seven years, but we're also unlike anything else there. We want to stay true to our handmade and homegrown roots while still finding ways to serve up the unexpected! 

We are actually the first business to ever make the leap from a Pike Place Market craft day stall to a permanent retail location within the market.

Q: What’s a detail about MarninSaylor that you hope your customers and the general public know about? 

Everything we sell is ideated, designed, and illustrated by myself and my husband, handmade by us and our team of four employees whenever possible, and when outsourcing is needed we always try to work with other local businesses first. Our team is tight-knit and hardworking, and before the pandemic we always enjoyed weekly lunches out together, delivery donuts in the studio, and our yearly MarninSaylor Field Day: a multi-day company retreat that focuses around a different activity or destination each time. In the past we've visited an amusement park and camped in a yurt, taken a boat up to Victoria BC, rented a cabin in a state park, and explored the San Juan Islands. We absolutely can't wait to be back in the studio with everyone, laughing and talking, and planning our next adventure. 


About the Author

Jackie Gibbons
Acknowledges the beauty and power of interdisciplinary problem solving. Studies in psychology and urban design and a career in the performing arts have been her main catalysts. A founding team member at Vibemap, here she continues her exploration of building societal infrastructure of empathy, trust, equity, happiness and possibility. Jackie’s vibes: Absurdly Joyous, Buzzing, Togetherness, Artsy, Kidcore, Going Rogue when she needs to. Follow @jackieggibbons