Say hi! Would you like to introduce yourself?
Hello lovelies! This is Elizabeth from Tilly & Type; I am a twenty-one year old design and illustration graduate, venturing out into the world of small businesses with my watercolors and love of stationery.
What does being a creative mean to you?
Being a creative means being inspired and having that urge to make, to experiment, to develop something new. It goes beyond just being a hobby for me; I find myself awake at night with new ideas and I actually enjoy spending time working on my business, even if it is just that; work! Painting and designing products is only a part of it, because I can be creative with my branding, my social media accounts, my packaging and more. It's all just one big adventure for me to play with!
Do you recall when you first realized you HAD to be creative?
I have definitely always been artsy from a young age, but growing up I struggled on and off with developing a personal style, finding a direction for my work. I decided initially to study something creative because it was what I was good at, but I only began to discover as I worked my way through university that it was something I had this passion for.
What is your favorite work ritual?
Music! I love putting something on in the background whilst I work, and just spending hours going through albums whilst I'm painting or putting a design together. If I'm doing something a bit more serious like answering emails or planning my newsletter, it's a good cup of tea and lighting a scented candle.
How do you cope when you feel overwhelmed?
I try to take some time out for myself; often that can involve putting all tech away and doing something quiet to recharge like reading a book, taking a walk, the usual. Depending on my mood, throwing myself back into my work can actually help sometimes, but I try to take a step back before I try that approach.
What three traits would you say are a must for someone going into business for themselves?
1. Passion, firstly. It's essential that no matter how stressful and difficult trying to start something like this can be, if you are passionate about what you create then it will be worth it. Unpacking the first few products of my stationery line, I practically felt like crying because I was so excited!
2. Secondly, being organized; running your own business can involve planning an immense amount of details, going over things like accounts, stock inventory, customer service and all other manner of things by yourself. It's a lot of work to take on!
3. Thirdly, being open-minded. Creating something like this by yourself means you can get quite wrapped up in your work. If you can take criticism, be able to bounce ideas off others, open up with people about your struggles and take their advice, it can do you a mile of good.
What is your definition of success? Do you feel that you are successful?
I believe that success for me personally, is accomplishing something that makes you proud of your work. That's despite all the late nights, all the hiccups along the way, all the money troubles. I feel so far I'm on the right path, but I have so much planned for the future that I don't want to say I'm successful... yet. Just watch me!
What has been the best advice you have received?
Have patience. I have little, and always want to start the next project now, send that email now, announce that new product now. Being reminded to slow down, enjoy the journey and actually watch myself grow has helped me to enjoy this so much more. It has also helped me to achieve better results, by taking my time with some things, double checking, asking for second opinions. Don't feel that you have to rush this just because you can't wait to get to that end goal.
Who is a female (past, present or fictional) you find inspirational?
Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice; my namesake! She is headstrong and stubborn, with an agenda of her own, and she appeals to the romantic in me.