Sunday, August 7, 2011

Blog Feature Sunday - Get to know Michelle at Beautiful Dreamer's Design

Click HERE to visit BDD!
Please tell us a little bit about yourself.-My name is Michelle and I am a work-at-home mom of four daughters, ages 2 - 9.  I have been happily married for 13 years.  I live in Southern Alberta, Canada.  I am self-employed and am the creator/owner of Beautiful Dreamers Design.  My business is dedicated to making hand-crafted nursery and children's room decor.

Name three words to describe yourself.

-Creative, persistent and perfectionist

Name three words to describe your shop.

-Expressive, kid-friendly and whimsical

How long have you been creating? How long have you been selling your product, and what made you take the plunge to sell to others?

-I have been a creative person since the day I was born. I always loved drawing, painting, crafting. I would often do things as gifts for family and friends. Officially I started in 2008 after my husband encouraged me to take my love of creation a step further and evolve into a business. I originally started by doing interior design and implementing those design concepts into children's rooms. After my fourth baby, I decided to take it to the Internet and start making custom room decor online. I have been selling on-line for the better part of a year and a half now. My husband told me that cateering to clientel online would allow me to continue to stay at home since it was too hard to work on client rooms in their homes with an infant. I wasn't too sure it would catch on to be honest, so you can imagine how shocked I am at how successful it's been thus far,

Tell me a little bit about your creative process?

-Typically my client's give me a basis on what to work from. Design concepts seem to come to me pretty easily in my mind. Some clients are very particular and tell me EXACTLY how they want things done, while others will hand over the creative reins so to speak and tell me to go with whatever I think works. It is honestly one of the biggest compliments to have someone trust your artistic integrity to allow you to come up with something without their imput! It is also stressful because you can only hope they had the same vision that you do! LOL. I am not big on rough drafting. Usually what I come up with design wise is done as I go. I pretty much get a visual picture and go with that. The more I tend to over-think a project, the more it doesn't turn out how I'd like it to. I treat every piece as though it was going into my kid's own rooms.

I love that you're able to really take ideas and run with them! I am sure that is nerve racking, but certainly really fun.

Can we see your work space?

-LOL my whole house is my workspace really! I have things everywhere even though I have both a formal office and a workroom. I like a lot of light so I kind of follow the sun around the house. However I am pretty organized with my supplies and keep them accessible.

I am pretty impressed, Michelle!

What are your other passions?

-I have really gotten into gardening in the last few years, which is funny since it never interested me before. I love reading and I write a lot. I started writing a novel about 7 years ago, and it's a work in progress. However with my life as it is, I seldom have time to work on it! One creative muse at a time I guess! I am always looking for ways to give back to the community and to causes. One cause close to my heart is Autism awareness and fundraising. One of our twins is Autistic, so as a parent of Autism, I know how important it is for social awareness, education and understanding!

I agree, doing work for Causes is SO important! It is amazing the impact that even small/medium businesses can have through community, fund raising, and just awareness!

What are your two favorite items from your shop, and why?

-Hmmmm that is a toughie. I think the items I enjoy the most are the decorative wooden names. I love the new names, and different designs/fonts. It always keeps things fresh. I do love the piggies even though they are the most time-consuming of all my products. I find they each have little personalities and I love how kids get a kick out of them.

What are some of your favorite shops?

-There really are too many and I wouldn't feel it fair to choose some over the others. I have gotten to know a lot of other business owners and befriended them. Talk about smart and creative ladies out there! I am in good company let me tell you!

Lastly, what is some advice that you would offer to those interested in starting their own shop?

-The biggest advice is to be confident in your business! I think that anyone can have a business plan, but if you don't believe that you can succeed with it, it will never get off the ground. Don't get discouraged if things start off slow. You need to network and gain a respectable reputation. Business doubles by postiive word-of-mouth. And remember a customer isn't just someone who you exchange money for product with. It is every single person you interact with so keep it light, friendly and professional!

Now it is onto my favorite part of the feature, where I share some of my very favorite items from Michelle's shop!

Isn't this business plaque adorable?!

I love these colors together, such a cute little Piggy!

Michelle, as always, it has been a pleasure! Thanks so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to spend some of it with us! I have really enjoyed learning more about you and your creative process!

Thanks for your donation to the Mega Giveaway!

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