Ashley Brooke Designs

Ashley Brooke is a southern belle who has a passion for paper products and design.   She believes that “custom stationery is one of life’s greatest luxuries”, and I have to agree with her!  I have admired the products from Ashley Brooke Designs for quite some time – currently my favorite pieces in her online shop are her Beach Day, Festive Girl & The Africa Project stationery – I have the latter and am already just about out!

Ashley Brooke Designs is currently offering 20% off on all of her adorable products through Sunday!  

Enjoy the rest of my Sweet Lemon interview with Ashley, and be sure to check out her shop and put that “blackfridayisyourbestie” promo code to good use!

Is design in your blood?  

I would definitely say creativity and entrepreneurship is in my blood.  My parents own and operate a very successful portrait studio and I’ve gotten so much from them on both the creative side and the business side of Ashley Brooke Designs.  I know without their guidance and inspiration, the business would not be what it is.

What was your biggest challenge when launching Ashley Brooke Designs?

Oh wow, let’s be real… it was all a challenge! I had NO idea what I was doing. Each morning I would wake up and think “okay, well… what do I do next?”

Who is/was your biggest supporter?

Obviously my family and friends have been hugely supportive! And, I will forever be grateful to Erin from Blue-Eyed Bride and Nina from According to Nina  for giving me my first big chance to shine!

When did you first realize that you made it BIG?

Ha! That’s such a flattering question…I’m not sure I feel like I’ve made it big yet! Although I am so, so grateful for the growth we’ve experienced and where we are now, I’m always looking for ways for us to improve and grow and get better and I think that helps me keep going.

Where and how do you find inspiration?

Oh gosh, this is a hard one! I get my inspiration from fashion, typography, layout design, textiles….. the list could go on and on!!  I try to look at things that I like and figure out how that design concept, layout, color could be translated into stationery for our client.  Usually the things I would want on my own desk are the things that end up being the most successful!

What types of projects are you currently working on?

We are always cooking up something!  Whether it’s a photo shoot for the blog, an upcoming promtion, or new product…there’s always something in the works!

Do you have any other upcoming partnerships and/or collaborations that you can share with us?

A lady keeps her secrets!

I love your blog, and I have to tell you that I can’t get enough of your “ABD: Styled” & Desk Obsessed features.  Then you have your custom designs on top of all of the fun products in your online shop.  Be honest, how in the world do you manage your time?  

I will admit, we pack a hefty punch when it comes to all the things we do! But I have a great team and sometimes the days are long, but we’re able to make it work because we love what we do and want the business to continue to be the best it can be.

Where do you see ABD in 5-10 years?

I have so many dreams and goals. I see us being successful and hopefully, producing inspiring art that makes people smile. The business has come leaps and bounds from the first year, and the funny thing is that it’s not at all what I thought it was going to look like on day one. So I really can’t wait to see what Ashley Brooke Designs will look like in 5 or 10 years!

Time to play favorites… What are a few of your favorite ABD products?

I really love the new favorite things cards we have in the online shop… the beach day and the Fall favorites are just so cute!

I love those!!  Do you see ABD moving beyond paper products?

Honestly paper is my passion, it’s why I started the business in the first place, but I am always looking for new opportunities and ways to share my illustrations, so if the right thing came along, you never know.

What are five things you can’t you live without?

Let’s see well, besides the obvious of friends and family…

1.  Popcorn

2.  My iPhone (It holds the secrets to the universe, my e-mail, silly texts from my girlfriends, and my Bible app)

3.  #2 pencils and a sketch book.

4.  Nail polish (let’s be honest… I could totally live without, but why?!)

5.  Um… and Nutella.

When you were five years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A prima ballerina, I still love a good leotard!

We all want to know… what’s it like being your own boss?  What are some of the pros and cons?

I love being my own boss, it’s one the biggest perks of owning the company 😉 I’ve always been a go-getter and do-er so its easy for me to motivate myself. But there are things I wish I could hand off to someone else…like monthly accounting work and things like that.

What is your ultimate goal as an entrepreneur?  

To be able to wake up every day and be able to do what I love to do!  And help others make their start-up dreams come true!

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