Happy May everyone! Can you believe it’s already May? Yikes! All of my blog posts so far have been all weddings, all business. I try to make my personal voice (and really bad jokes) shine through, but as I sat down to write this week about functional favors and how to choose the right paper for your invitations…well, I just couldn’t do it. So this week the blog is going to be a personal journey, a bit of an introduction, and hopefully help you get to know the girl #bossbitch behind the corny jokes a little bit.
Hi. I’m Laney. I’m a stationery designer and calligrapher. You know that already, but it’s the first thing I want to say when I introduce myself. I’m sure many of you other small business owners understand that the business is such a part of you it’s indecipherable from you as a person. I often get advice to be less political and less obvious about my beliefs on my business accounts, and I think that works for larger brands. However, my company is so ingrained into who I am as a person and vice versa, that if I do not stay true to who I am in business, then I am afraid I will lose myself in life too.
So, who am I? I am 26, born and bred in The South, which has capital letters because it is a gigantic part of me, despite having lived in California for the last 5 years. I am so excited to be moving back to my home state of North Carolina in fewer than two weeks! I have no idea what this means for my business or for my person, but my phenomenal boyfriend and very energetic puppy will be there with me, so I know we will make it a happy adventure. Things I’m most excited about in The South: eating biscuits any time I want, my family, brick(!) houses, and I think I need to mention biscuits again, mmmk.
I’m one of those people who tries to make my birthday last for a month or longer, I have to have the color yellow in my life at all times, I start every sentence with “Okay” or “So”, and my mom always says I could make a mess out of an M&M. I cry in everything, including gum commercials, read a lot of YA dystopian novels (recs welcome), and apparently I really like making lists. I do not believe in astrology, but feel free to look up a typical Pisces personality if you’d like to learn more about me, because I fit into that bubble all too well. I try to be “different” and “unique” all the time but I find that at my core I am extremely basic, except for the fact that I hate coffee and avocados. And Taylor Swift (take that, mainstream!). I believe strongly in civil rights for all people, science, feminism AND intersectional feminism, that competition drives progress, and that education is the place to start to improve all of these issues.
I mention my grandmother constantly, because she taught me to sew around the age of four and opened up an entire world for me. She is no longer with us, but I use at least one tool I inherited from her supplies every single day and never stop feeling her presence when I’m working. I like to think about whether she would be proud of me, and worry that I’m not doing enough to give back to my community the way she did constantly and without question. I also worry that it’s rude to think of her more than my grandfather, who had the brightest eyes and who made tables and kaleidoscopes and the most detailed ships out of wood even though he didn’t talk much. My mom is a designer, my brother makes beer, so I guess you could say creation runs deep in my family.
The upcoming move has had me thinking about where I want my business and my life to be in several years, so I can make the decisions today that can get me there. I’ve started paying more attention to what parts of my work really make my heart smile and which parts kind of make everything go blahhhhhhhhhhhhh (that’s a technical term). I hope that in 5 years I will be making fewer signs and more invitations, I hope that I will be able to hire someone who has the detail-oriented mind for proposals and ordering, and I hope that I’ll be able to consolidate a lot of my offerings into a more standard structure. I also hope to stop talking about work as much, because I truly believe in a healthy work-life balance and have been a bit off on that since starting Design by Laney. Hopefully adding some more of “me” into my work conversation will help me achieve that balance!
Okay, so, (see, told ya), hopefully this was appreciated and not TOO ramble-y for you today. I would love to get to know y'all and learn about your hopes and dreams and thoughts on biscuits, so please tell me about yourself in the comments below! Hope you’ve enjoyed my little soapbox, next week we will revert back to some more work-related posts unless otherwise instructed 😊