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Mini biography
Recognized with the Best of 2010 for Excellence in Stationery by Wedluxe
Magazine, published in Applied Arts Magazine, Weddingbells, & Coupe
Magazine, and winner of the Gold Award for Young Achievement in Visual
Arts in 2008 by the Chinese Cultural Centre of Toronto,
Deborah Lau-Yu is a passionate designer-story-teller through her highly
original and beautiful graphic work.
Known to friends and family as a passionate artist since she was a child,
Deborah created her first piece of correspondence when she was 3 years old.
By age 5, she scribbled hand-drawn barcodes on the backs of her homemade
cards. She endulges in art and design, and naturally spreads her love and
appreciation for art, paper, and printing to those around her.
Deb received her Bachelors degree from the University of Waterloo,
majoring in Urban Planning & Design, where she excelled in the area of
design & spatial concepts. She proceeded to pursue her love for drawing
and curiosity for design at York University, where she graduated at the
top of the class and obtained her Masters in Graphic Design. In 2006, seeing a lack of original, creative, non-template and truly
personal social correspondence, Deb naturally began her journey as a small
business owner. She designed artistic, one-of-a-kind hand-crafted
invitations for weddings and special occasions. Invited to participate at
juried shows in her community, she quickly gained a solid reputation for
personal customer service and impeccable eye for detail. To her family and
friends, she was a hard-working artist who hoped to one day change the
world with her designs. In 2008, she graduated in graphic design, with 3
prestigious scholarship awards, and had winning work published in 2 major
 'I love to inspire people. In my design work, I strive for originality
and depth so that the stories that are translated are compelling and
offer meaning & insight on life.' — Deborah
Life is too short to not pursue your dream. Despite the most difficult
time in her life, Deb decided to fully embrace her calling by taking a
huge step. She opened a boutique studio-storefront in the upscale
neighbourhood of Unionville in Markham, Ontario: PALETTERA™. This is where
she and her team spend their days designing, creating, and hand-crafting
beautiful work in-house; Deb is keen on the practice of making in a local
context. She keeps her designs warm and uniquely detailed, by developing
and drawing each concept by hand, from creative inception to the physical
product. Deb is committed to developing the tradition of letterpress
printing, and offering a truly bespoke design process that holds high
standards for quality and luxury. She gives her clients the opportunity to
work with a passionate designer who can capture the story and spirit of
each client in their stationery projects.  'Some women delight in fashion, food, or perhaps designer bags. To me,
nothing is more lovely to hold thana beautiful hand illustration
letterpress printed onto pure cotton paper. '—Deborah 
Deb continues to research and experiment on her 1905 vintage press, as she
builds her body of work.  She finds inspiration in almost everything
around her. Her recent travels to New York and Hong Kong also offered
fresh perspectives on material culture, cross-cultural design and
production. Deb's work is not stuck to any particular style, because she
believes that a good designer is not tied down to one style. Rather, her
life's work is about developing her designer voice. She likes to combine
traditional elements with a fresh a innovative perspective, such that her
designs honour the past but direct us forward.Deb has completed hundreds of custom tailored projects for weddings &
private events, community galas, corporate identity/branding and novelty
packaging and custom art pieces. Regardless of the project type, Deb
enjoys producing stunning, never-seen-before work that gifts her audience
with profound beauty and meaning. 'If you have a dream, you must absolutely chase it to your utmost — until
you live and breathe it.' — Deborah
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