How My Freelance Business Became Full-Time
I launched my business as a side gig when I was working full time right out of university just over ten years ago—it seems like forever ago, really. At the time it was solely my freelance graphic design business. I felt in my heart it was something I could grow into, which is why even back then I got real and registered it as a small business.
How Attn2Detail Began
In university I took a branding class and we had to come up with a fictional brand. I decided that mine would be a custom card shop—now if that’s not foreshadowing, I don’t know what is. Fast-forward to present day: I still do freelance graphic design, and now create unique origami cards and nursery décor. While the plan I created way back when was not this, exactly, I am happy with how my business has evolved and continues to grow into something I am proud of.
Lets Get Personal
If it were not for my little side project, I would not have been able to leave my cushy job as an in-house designer to pursue my other love, teaching. For a few years I studied and taught the Montessori curriculum, all the while running my freelance business in the evenings. Then my husband and I decided we wanted to have kids, and let’s just say that did not come easily for us. Having something I could do from home allowed me the flexibility to work while reducing my stress level, and I eventually left my teaching position to focus on creating our little family. While we continued our journey and struggled with loss and fertility treatments, I continued to work at my business. It was the one constant that remained and gave me a sense of purpose as I struggled with things I could not control around me.
I now have a family of my own, a charming and daring two-and-a-half year-old, a husband, and a dog, who support and encourage my business—well, maybe not the dog! They are the inspiration for what I do every day, what drives me to succeed and to want more—for myself and for them. I love being able to work from home while my son naps, but most importantly I love the flexibility that being my own boss allows as I maintain the family life I set out to have for myself.
I joined forces with another amazing local mom and charity, Gwen Broda at the New Mom Project. I started out by donating my design services to her, and offered to create her logo. I wanted her to have strong branding that would be unique and recognizable as she grew. She is two years in now and I continue to contribute my time and services. It feels good to give back to the community but also to know I am helping out a fellow mom.
With the help and support of the Mamas & Co., I have found the confidence to step out of my comfort zone and go for what I want as I run my business. The sense of community and connection between these women is enough to empower even the smallest business, like mine, to set goals in order to grow and succeed. Thank you to Lianne for starting this group, to Linnea and Emma for helping run the show, and to ALL the other lovely ladies that have given their time to help our businesses thrive. I am truly grateful to be part of this growing family of like-minded mamas who are committed to helping each other grow their businesses.
Danielle Lewis is the creative force behind Attn2Detail Designs.