Today we’d like to introduce you to Beth Schneider.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Beth. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I’m a surface pattern designer based in the suburbs of Chicago, IL. With a college degree in Interior Architecture, I realized after about 8 years that drawing black and white floor plans and construction documents was just plain boring! A new job let me get my feet wet in the marketing/graphics industry and I fell in love. So back to school I went to study graphic design at The Illinois Institute of Art and then again shortly after to study surface design through an online course. The corporate world gave me some great experience and I decided to go solo in 2009 and started designing stationery, fabric and patterns to license out to various companies. My designs are clean and fresh with a fun, playful twist. I seek inspiration from all types of everyday objects and love to interpret them in my own way, whether it be painted with watercolors, hand drawn marks or geometric lines and shapes. I love to create repeats digitally and empower my designs with a modern color palette. Today I am proud to say that I have my designs on all types of products such as water bottles, doormats, fabric, gift bags and greeting cards and can be found at major stores like Target, The Container Store, Home Depot, and many more.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Of course not! I started my business after having my first child so working from home with kids is a challenge in itself! I slowly worked up to a few days a week where I would hire a babysitter and work at the library all day or work at night and on the weekends when my husband was home to watch the kids, which was tough. I was exhausted and it took away from our time spent together as a family. And then slowly but surely as the kids got a bit older, I was able to work all day and have normal business hours.
I also work for myself, by myself which means that I get to do everything from designing to marketing to bookkeeping. I know that if I get a late start to the morning and decide to watch the Today Show with a cup of coffee, it’s not hurting anyone but me. Nobody takes over my job when I’m on vacation or out of the office, I am responsible for everything. But that’s also the great part. I know that it’s in my own power to make my business succeed and it’s a REALLY good feeling when it does!
Beth Schneider Designs – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
When people ask me what I do, I always get that look. That, “what does that mean?!” look. But I love explaining it because I love my job and could talk about it all day! I am a Surface Pattern Designer. So basically, I draw and paint and create patterns and then sell them to companies to put on their products. That cute mug or backpack or pillow that sits on your couch….somebody designed the pattern that’s on it. That’s me.
My designs are fresh and fun. I don’t like taking anything too seriously so I always try to incorporate a little fun in to my patterns. I love to paint with watercolors and draw. It was a super proud moment for me when I walked down the aisle of Target one day to find one of my patterns on a line of travel mugs. Sometimes when I sell my patterns I don’t know when they will go in to production or if they will make it to market at all. I knew these mugs were for Target and for the fall so I would walk up and down the aisle hoping some day they would be there, and they were!
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
I listened to a great podcast recently from Heroine. It was an interview with Grace Bonney who is the founder of the hugely popular blog Design*Sponge. She had mentioned how success isn’t defined as how much money you make or how many followers you have on Instagram. It totally stuck with me. Life is hard. Running your own business is hard. Knowing what and how often to post on Instagram is hard. But at the end of the day, if you love what you do every day and are able to make a living at it, have some proud moments along the way, and enjoy a healthy work-life balance, that’s success to me.
- Website: bethschneiderdesigns.com
- Email: email@example.com
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