I recently did some product shooting for Kelly Bara from Mugsby. If you're ever in need of a custom mug or want to surpise your bridesmaids a personalized gift- she's your girl!
Kelly left the corporate world (as a Speech Language Pathologist) a few years ago when she had her second child. "At the time, I was running an Etsy shop selling handmade banners with two children. Life got a little hectic, and I decided it was time to become my own boss and focus on my career as Mugsby!"- Kelly Bara
Sarah and Jack agreed to take a few photos with her mugs during their engagement session in exchange Kelly gifted them these two adorable Mr. and Mrs. mugs!
Here is my Interview with Kelly. Scroll down to view more images of her products.
Tell me about yourself:
- I have a thick Southern accent, and get asked where I’m from at least once a week.
- I have two daughters.
- I drink unsweet tea all day every day.
- I love listening to (true crime) podcasts while I work.
- I cannot smell skunk.
- I strongly dislike and am scared of spiders, whales, and crickets.
Why do you do what you do? I have always had a creative gene. It started when my friend and I would sell gold spray painted pinecones on the sidewalks by our houses. From there, I was always making and doing and trying new things. I’ve tried jewelry, sign making, clothes, and I finally settled on something that became successful! I enjoy doing it. I’m almost addicted to it. I work from dusk until dawn and dawn until dusk with a little sleep here and there. I am constantly brainstorming new ideas and concepts to try out. It is my passion, and I’m doing it all as my own boss!
Who are your inspirations? My inspirations are all of the girl bosses out there working daily to have successful careers. I admire that, and strive to be a better boss daily.
How would you define your style? Honestly, my style is all over the place. If I had to choose a direction, I’d say floraly. I love flowers and bright colors, and when designing, I tend to steer in that direction.
How did your business come about? The idea and/or concept. I’ve had many business ventures, which have mostly all but failed due to my having little to no interest once I really got into it or me not putting enough effort into the business. I tend to just go with it. If I have an idea, I’m the kind of person that will run with it before doing the research. When I first opened my Etsy shop, I knew nothing about mugs. What I did know was how to sell a product on Etsy. I may have done it backwards, but it seemed to work this time! The idea of mugs really came from knowing that I could target many audiences with the same product!
What products do you offer? We offer different drinkware products, and we are continuously testing new products to add. We also carry totes and cosmetic bags. 2017 will be a big year of new products for us!
What’s the inspiration behind the designs? I grab my inspiration from color boards and trends that I see. I put a ton of research into font combos that coordinate well together and what colors look best together.
What is one thing you learned during your career? Do not be afraid to try new things. Do not be afraid to fail. If you don’t get a response you were looking for, try again. Try it a different way, but don’t give up!
What’s the best business tip you’ve ever received? Don’t take anything personally. Not everyone is going to agree with products you offer or your policies or your new ideas. Brush off any negative, hold your head up high and stick to your vision. Be the most positive you that you can be.
How long have you been running your business? I’ve been on Etsy for a long time. I’ve been running a successful handmade banner shop since 2011 (which my mom has now taken over), become a full time entrepreneur at the end of 2015 when I had my second child, and opened Mugsby in 2016.
What does your ideal client look like? Anyone who drinks liquids from receptacles. I try to target as many audiences as I can from people looking for ideas for pregnancy announcements, weddings, inspirational, motivational, career related, funny, animal related items, you name it.
Where can people find you?
Etsy Shop: www.mugsby.etsy.com