I had the pleasure of interviewing Lisa from Finch Designs for this week’s small business feature. Lisa was born and raised in Minnesota, with a love for travel and fabric. She is a mother of two and revels in new crafts, perfecting prior designs, and finding new treasures. She is here to make pretty things and help people find amazing handcrafted gifts.
Finch Designs is your one stop small business shop for all things handcrafted and baby-friendly. They offer high quality, 100% handmade gifts that are made with love. All items are made with love in a smoke free and dog friendly home.
PM: When was your company founded and where are you based?
Lisa: Finch Designs was founded in 2013, in the rural community of Janesville, Minnesota.
PM: How many are involved in your company?
Lisa: It’s just me over here, I am the person who designs, sews, and ships it all. I am entertaining the idea of bringing on some packaging help this holiday season, but right now it is all me!
PM: What inspired you to start your company?
Lisa: Finch Designs was created when a friend wanted a nursing scarf and I knew I could make one for her and she wouldn’t have to wait for one to ship to her. Then people started asking for other items to go with as baby shower gifts and it just spun out from there to include the comprehensive amount of handmade items we have now. In November of 2013, my son suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury while at daycare and I wanted to find a way to turn my hobby into a business, so I put all my effort into growing my business. I started with a facebook page, and then began doing craft shows, and finally opened an etsy shop in November of 2014. It totally took off from there and now I work from home full-time doing what I love and getting to take care of my two kids!
PM: Did you have a background in business prior to starting your company?
Lisa: Yes, I have a degree is Business Administration, and always knew that I would be doing marketing for a brand or company, I just never thought I would be doing it for myself. I love the business side of having a brand; I think it is what keeps me hungry and prevents me from getting burned out. I know I can always take a break from sewing to work on a project that stimulates another part of my brain.
PM: Did you run into any problems or resistance while launching?
Lisa: I think my biggest handicap has been my own fear. I was always afraid to leave my job, or to even branch out and start an etsy shop because it intimated me. Planning out my goals, yet forging ahead when I’ve met critical milestones has really helped me. I’ve never been one to make rash decisions, but sometimes we are the only thing holding ourselves back in life – let go!
PM: How do you get the most out of your day?
Lisa: I get the most out of my day when I have a plan of attack. I make sure that we have our family time, but when nap time hits, it’s game on. I know what items I will be sewing, what I will be posting on social media, and then I dive right in. There are still plenty of late nights, but it is so worth it to be able to take a day off to go and do something unexpected.
PM: How is your family apart of your business choices?
Lisa: Family is key to my business choices. I want to stay busy, yet I need to balance having a life as well. By working for myself, I have the time for volunteering, more family activities, and the income to do extras – like ballet for my daughter and a children’s museum membership for all of us to enjoy. Starting Finch Designs has made all of that possible.
PM: What music inspires you?
Lisa: It all depends on my mood. If I am stressed out and a deadline is looming, I swear the only thing that calms me is Celtic Women station on Pandora. There is nothing like that music to make you relax and just breathe. If I am in the zone and really on a roll, it is classic rock all the way. Steve Miller Band is my personal favorite and my kids know all the songs too.
PM: What is your favorite thing to do when you are not working?
Lisa: When I am not sewing, you can usually find me with my twin sister. We spend an obscene amount of time together and talk daily. I enjoy reading immensely and have at least two books open at any given time. Volunteering is my passion, especially community involvement. Recently, I have also discovered Dr Who, so I am pretty much down the rabbit hole with that too.
PM: What do you see in the future for your small business shop?
Lisa: In the future, I plan on expanding to a dedicated studio space where I can spread out! Hiring someone for packaging would be key, and maybe even someone to cut fabric. Having a few more retail locations is on the horizon, so expansion is in the works!
Visit Finch Designs on etsy cleverfinchdesigns.etsy.com and use the coupon code PUNKYMOM for 20% off orders over $10