I run my own business – Andrea Barras from Baby Bird Basics

When The Grace Factory hosted it’s first #TGFsocial we asked on twitter who could design a flyer for us and Andrea Barras was the first to saa “yes I will do it”. I thought – cool, at least now I don’t need to do it on power point. But WOW – did Andrea EXCEED all my expectations (so cliché, but so true). Check out this professional flyer!!

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Since then we’ve had a wonderful twitter relationship, never even met before. She’s done all TGF logos, website design, business cards etc. and I’ve had so many people comment about how professionally it was done. Thanks for your reliability Andrea and for your awesome work that you produce!! Read more about her businesses here:

Name: Andrea Barras

Business name and website: I have two!

Andrea Barras Graphic Design & Creative Consulting – andreabarras.com

Baby Bird Basics – babybirdbasics.com

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Brief description of business: Andrea Barras Graphic Design & Creative Consulting – as the name suggests, I am a freelance graphic designer and creative specialist – I love working with start-ups and mom-who-work-from-home in particular but welcome all business opportunities from all over SA (and the world really – I have clients from Australia and the UK – ah, the wonder of modern technology!) Baby Bird Basics – I hand make and sell baby/baby-related goodies like bandana bibs, teething rings, dummy clips and nursing covers for breastfeeding mamas

Since when have you run your own business:

I have been freelancing since the beginning of 2010 (while we were still in the UK) and have done so through a move across the world, back to SA, and through both of my pregnancies. Baby Bird Basics is a newer venture that has been going for just under a year now – launched it soon after my second daughter was born (some say brave, other say crazy!)

Why is it better than working for a boss:

Both my businesses allow me the flexibility I need in order to be the best mom I can be – working for someone else is less likely to afford me the time and lifestyle I live. Unfortunately it means some late nights at times but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I hate working for other people – I have tried it! – I just like to be my own boss 🙂

Thing you enjoy most each day:

Working from home, being with my kids, wearing my slippers all day!

Thing you enjoy least each day:

Not always getting things done when I want to because of working from home!

Advice for people starting their own business:

Wow, where do I begin! A few things to share: a) If you are a mom and/or if it’s a creative business I’d highly recommend reading any/all of these books by Meg Mateo Ilasco to start with: http://mateoilasco.com/books.

b) good branding is essential if you want your business to be taken seriously and to appeal to it’s intended market – and no, whipping up your logo by yourself in Paint does not count 😉 Make the investment and hire someone to help you with this aspect, spend some money to make even more.

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c) spend some time on analyzing the competitors – can you see what works for them, what doesn’t? Apply your learning’s to your own business.

d) be patient but proactive, enthusiastic but not forceful, engage with your customers/clients and find out what you can do to make your service/products stand out from the rest – your unique selling point!

Top three things you have learnt from having your own business:

1. hard work and dedication are the cornerstone of any business, things don’t just happen magically and on their own/overnight

2. making genuine connections through social media and dedicated networking events is invaluable

3. patience and positivity go a long way!

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