I've received SO many messages this past month asking for advice in the Wedding Stationery game and I feel horrific that I haven't replied to them all yet soooo I've whipped up a blog post with my 5 must do's that made owning my own business do-able for me. Let's go....
1. Self belief. Nothing is achievable without this starting block. I have suffered with anxiety all of my life and am naturally my worst enemy. After honestly being in the worst state on my life after an actual breakdown 3 years ago (yep, at 23) I decided life is too short to give a monkeys what anyone thinks. I figured I can do whatever I damm please if I work hard enough. At the begin of this year I started up Billie Bryant Designs and focused my life on learning how to be the best I can be a designing stationery! After waking up every day telling myself (and actually proving to myself) that I can do this, it started to pay off. Basically, if you tell yourself it's do-able, it just is. Promise.
2. Don't compare yourself with others. That's not to say don't look at others for inspiration. I follow thousands of people on Instagram to keep myself focused, but you can't compare your business to anyone else's as we all have completely different goals! I used to look at everyone wondering if they are doing better than me, but now I aim to look at people more as mentors that inspire me.
3. Just start. Honestly it's that easy. You want to be a writer, start writing. You want to be an illustrator, start drawing. And document it too! The more you do it and get your work out there the more people will associate you with that thing. When I started on my wedding stationery company I had no clients. Zero. But everyday I would design potential wedding stationery ranges and documented my journey on social media. Once I saved up some money I got some of these final designs printed and started up my Etsy store selling my samples. My first stationery range cost me the grand total of 50 quid to print. Not bad for the first step towards working for myself!
4. Do the boring bits. I've never been academic, I'm arty farty. The hardest thing for me was all the blooming spreadsheets. The only thing more painful than spreadsheets is being out of pocket after working your socks off... therefore I suggest you chose the spreadsheet option. Start with the basics, your sale price = all your outgoings + your time. Don't leave anything out, delivery costs, material costs, it all adds up! The good news about the boring bits is if you do the hard work now and it pays off you will one day be in a financial situation where you can pay others to do the bits you're less good at. Freeing up your time to be the arty farty genius you are.
5. DO NOT STOP. I've nearly giving up so many times because I thought it wasn't working. The little voice in my head loves to tell me I'm a rubbish designer. Get yourself a work playlist full of inspirational songs and play them so loud you can't help but feel brilliant. As I too openly admit Kanye West is soul food to me (cringe), so with him on shuffle I can achieve most things.
Breakdown. You can do this. Have faith in yourself because no one else can do that bit for you. I love Kanye West.
Peace and love.