For me, March feels like a good time to circle the wagons and get back to the heart of what's at hand. If you're a goal-setter or a plan-maker, you probably spent January and February taking steps forward and making things happen. Maybe some went well, maybe you feel like you're back to square one on other things. I have areas where I set goals and saw great fruit, and I feel like I had some plans or ideas that have needed restructuring or more heart-work.
When we set out to make our Naptime Diaries Shop plans for the year, we set March as a catch up month. We obviously will still sell prints and run our shop, but we're not releasing anything new and we don't have any big projects planned. Our major goals? Clean + reorganize the office spaces (more on that next week), stabilize our rhythms as a business, freshen up our websites, and get back to the heart of why we do what we do.
Scripture is crazy important to us. Knowing that people are reading, absorbing, learning, and being blessed by God's Word is the most important thing. It's a blessing to us that we get to do it creatively, in a way that hopefully is incredibly inspiring to people. So this month we're circling the wagons and getting back to doing what we do: working to get scripture in as many homes as possible, in the most creative + inspiring ways possible! And I thought I'd let you guys in on a little bit of that process this month.
First up, we try to start most seasons or print releases with a mood board. For winter 2014, I was feeling crazy uninspired so my great gal Hayley at The Tiny Twig made a moodboard FOR us, which was a huge blessing. As we prep to release a spring/summer line of prints and as I design for the blog and style photos for social media + promotions, I'll try to rely heavily on the following moodboard! It's inspired by summers on the East Coast & West Coast and COLOR. When I made this moodboard I was thinking about picnics on the side of the Atlantic Ocean, afternoons painting with my kids, jeweltones, hiking in the pacific northwest, waking up in a cushy + classic bedroom, or taking naps in an eclectic bohemian bedroom. It might sound disjointed and crazy to you, but to me it all fits!
|Clockwise from the top: House of Rym blanket, one of my instagram pictures, Yolanda Sanchez painting, Nena & Co bag, Whitlock & Co pillow, driftwood shelf, sailing picture, pacific northwest, |
bedroom inspiration, one of my instagrams of ocean
The next thing I did for this season was really get visual and specific about the homes we design for. I always tell small business owners they should KNOW their customer and bloggers that they should KNOW their reader. Where do they read your blog? What are they typically wearing? When they use your product, where is it in their house? When I worked at Anthropologie, I thought one of the wisest things they did as a company was name the lady they were designing + merchandising for each season. Each collection of clothing had a name, she had a whole story, a personality, a job, and we knew what her family was like. It was all imaginary - but it helped the company be intentional about their customer, their branding, etc.
So I try to do the same and be intentional about who I'm designing for and what she'd like on her walls. While I like the customers that don't fit the mold and still love our product, here are some of the homes + ladies I tend to keep in mind when making our prints. You might recognize a few of these gals!
A. This picture is straight from the home of Erin over at Blue Eyed Bride. Erin is a blogger & a sweet friend of mine. I haven't been to her new house (though I'd sure like to go), but I picture it classically decorated with a youthful flair.
B. Next up, I love this picture of Jessica from Jessica N Designs sitting near her Ephesians 4:2 print. Jessica is a young mom, an entrepreneur like me, and when I see pictures of her home or studio - it looks really eclectic and bright.
C. One of my favorite houses I've ever hung out in is my friend Ellen's. It's a crazy beautiful mix of traditional, creative, bohemian, comfortable, and on trend. It's the kind of house where you feel like you can put your shoes on the couch and talk for an hour - but you also look around and think, "I want to go home and do THAT in my house." Ellen was one of my first handmade business friends and I still design with her in mind - would Ellen want this?
D. I've followed Promise Tangeman for years online and she is one of the most inspiring + creative ladies I know. When I see glimpses of her house on instagram or her blog, I take note. She seems to be edgy in her home decor, while also really organized and tidy. I definitely think of homes like hers when I design.
E. Lastly, I try to watch women who are most definitely taste-makers like Whitney English. Whitney has impeccable style & is an amazing designer. Her home decor is really classic, but super timeless. I love some edgy, bohemian home style - but I still want our prints to be traditional enough to fit in a home like Whitney's.
But again - the heart of it is the heart of it.
No matter how people's homes look, our desire is to provide inspirational art that reminds people of God's Word and encourages them in their days.
What's on your plate for March? We'd love to hear.
And do you have a space you'd like us to keep in mind when making our prints?
Tell us about it!