Doers and Dreamers...Billy
It's week five and I'm super pleased I got to interview the super creative and funny dad of two Billy, from Go Outside The Lines. The Dad who made colouring in cool.
Hi Billy tell us a bit about yourself? (and your business)
I’m the man behind Go Outside the Lines, a business that creates and sells colouring posters for kids to colour in and go crazy on, to create their own little master piece really.
What was the driving force to set up Go Outside the Lines?
I’d always loved posters, typography and previously has screen printed posters for the home and then when our kids came along I wanted something that could still be seen as art, but also got the little ones in on it, we have a loads of Jude’s framed master pieces dotted about the house, which he’s really proud of, and so are we of course, I wanted something that I wouldn’t mind putting up on the wall as well as him.
What’s your workspace like?
It’s wherever I can find a space to pitch up my Mac in the house .. I’d LOVE to have an office in our house so I can work at night… one day… one fine day!! Positive thoughts…
Tell us about a typical day?
Well I run my business part time around my full time role as a designer in an Advertising agency, it fun but also very busy, the family muck in when it gets a bit too busy, we have a 9 month old too so its all early starts and late nights, but well worth it when stuff starts to come off and people are sending great feedback about the products.
How did you launch?
I started out by just printing up my first run of posters and getting onto Instagram and connecting with people that I though would be into my stuff.. I really think Instagram is an amazing community and have met some awesome people there, grown my business and been involved in some totally amazing events (Little Hotdog Watson launch for one!) just from that platform.
What’s your favourite online resource (app/tool) that is indispensable for work?
100% Instagram for me, it’s how I connect, showcase and escape.
How do you manage family and work life balance?
Well it depends on what you call managing! We are all in it together, some days we totally switch off and don’t do any work and focus on the kids, but some days are a total juggle, doing emails / rolling up posters around the carnage of dinner time.. we get by, it’s fun until the spag bol fingers smear the clean white tubes and we have to start again! Some I blame on the postman.
What have you found most surprising since setting up your business?
That if you have a clear enough vision, it will work out.. and that people will share that vision and help you too. The support network I’ve built up is fantastic, there is always someone that can help you, that has been through it or going through the same situation at the same time.
On the tough days how do you self motivate?
Music and reality check on how far you have come – a flick though your own Instagram account or hashtag can be beneficial and show you that things are working.
What’s been your business highlight so far?
I think being contacted by a really prestigious Oxford Street retailer to go in a meet them after they’d seen the product online was a huge deal for me, things are still in the pipeline with them, but when I received the email I nearly fell off my chair.
What have you got planned next?
Well, testing of a few products and some big retailer events at Christmas which will be amazing if they go ahead.
And finally….what’s your top tip for anyone thinking of starting their own business?
Just BEGIN… you never know where you’ll be in a years time if you don’t start now.
To find out more about Billy and his awesome screen prints for kids please visit http://www.gooutsidethelines.co.uk
Every Monday we will bring you a new Doers & Dreamers interview. Let us know who else you would like to know more about.
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