5 Minutes with Brianne Froeber from The Nest of Craftiness
Brianne Froeber: The Nest of Craftiness
Brianne Froeber is one of those people who just radiates kindness. She is the mama maker behind The Nest of Craftiness, but she runs a small shop community group on Instagram and is a stay-at-home mama to her sweet boy Elliot. Brianne believes in community over competition and strives to support other female shop owners who are doing their best to build their business. Check out her Q&A below to learn how this former Teacher’s Assistant changed her life around to support her dreams, all while being the best mom she can be for her family.
We want to know more about you! Let’s start off by hearing more about you and your family!
PP: Hi Brianne! Tell us a little bit about yourself
BF: Hi, I am Brianne and I'm 26 years old. I'm the maker behind The Nest Of Craftiness. I live in a very small town in Illinois with my fiancé Terry, who I've been with for 8 years. I'm also a full time stay at home mom to our sweet 1-year old son, Elliot.
PP: We’ve had mom’s from all professional background on here. How would you describe yourself?
BF: I like to consider myself as a small shop maker and owner. This shop is my second baby and a dream of mine! Recently it’s become more of a side hustle, as motherhood can be challenging to find a balance between running a shop and still making time for family. For me, it's not about the money, it's simply me putting my energy into what makes me happiest... When I get that chance to create something beautiful, I take it!
PP: That’s amazing, Brianne, and such a good perspective to have. Can you tell us a little bit about The Nest of Craftiness and how you got started?
BF: The idea of my shop started in 2015. I worked full-time as a Teacher's Assistant at a daycare center for 4 years. Although I did love working with children and helping shape those creative little minds I felt as if I wasn't shaping my full creativity. I felt lost and just overall unhappy. So, I took a leap and quit.
I started to do a little soul searching soon after and got back into doing the things I loved most. It started off with moving into our first house and turning it into a home. Creating pieces of art to have in each room, one being a dreamcatcher for our bedroom. That was it, I loved everything about it! After teaching myself to weave, many trials and errors. I designed a few dreamcatchers for friends and family who adored them. I then opened The Nest Of Craftiness in March 2016. I now make many boho and whimsical inspired pieces. From dreamcatchers, mobiles, wall hangings, and more recently the woodslice accessory holders.
PP: I love hearing stories like yours. Ones that combine courage and faith with just general inspiration. Can you give us a little more insight into your day to day now? What does your workspace look like?
BF: We recently remodeled a spare bedroom downstairs as my work space and I absolutely love it! However, I still find myself happier working upstairs at our kitchen table. I love that I can still see and hear my son play with his dad during the day. Makes me feel like I'm not missing out and it's nice seeing their faces. But let's be real, I'm running down there when the crying starts!
PP: Do you involve your family in your business at all? And if so, how do you get them excited about everything you’re doing?
BF: My boys are definitely involved. Elliot gets so excited to be in my work space and loves getting his little hands on anything they can reach! I love seeing his face light up and him pointing to my work while saying "was that?" As for my fiance, he's pretty amazing. He helps out in more ways than one. He's my personal mailman, my biggest supporter, and the best dad around. To keep it simple, he's happy seeing me happy!
PP: Having a toddler at home while running a business is tough! Tell us a little more about how you manage that work-life balance?
BF: A steady routine. My little guy takes 2 naps during the day and goes to bed at 8 pm. I hustle right after and usually stop for the night once my man comes home at 10:30 pm to spend some time together. My fiance has been a huge support with helping around the house and watching our son during the day so I can get a few things done before he leaves for the day. I've also been making it a priority to have the weekends off as my "off days" where I can fully be in the moment. No phones, no distractions, just quality family time.
PP: Unplugging is SO important, especially when you want to stay on track. What are some other ways you keep yourself organized?
BF: Actually writing things down, with a good old pen and paper! I've recently been using a planner and it has helped so much. Every few weeks, I like to come up with new items I'll be adding to the shop. I stay organized by laying out all the supplies needed and making little piles on my desk. For inventory, I use a clothing rack to hang all my items and as I'm OCD, they are in order by size. As for orders, my items are made RTS. Every so often I get a custom order, which I then write down exactly what they want, lay it out, and it's made usually within 1-2 weeks.
PP: Let’s talk a little bit about self-care. As moms, we’re so busy focusing on everyone else around us that we often forget to take care of the most important person – ourselves. Give us three ways you incorporate self-care into your life.
BF: Can't really go far into depth with that one, as I'm currently sitting here in yesterday’s clothes of my man's t-shirt, sweatpants, and a messy bun. I do however, try getting a real workout in twice a week because chasing my son around doesn't seem to be too effective. Every now and again I like to splurge and get myself something nice. Coffee runs can do wonders and I love relaxing on the couch while catching up on Dr. Phil.
PP: Tell us a little bit about your life before this chapter of motherhood. What did your career look like? How has motherhood impacted your professional choices?
BF: Before motherhood, I felt very accomplished and always on top of things. Compared to now, I feel like I'm slipping behind on things. Some days it can be really hard feeling accomplished at the end the day when I still got a milelong to-do list staring back at me. Regardless, I'm so thankful that I get the opportunity to watch my son grow every single day because it all goes by way too fast. He's now the reason I keep going, I want to teach him that dedication pays off and to always follow his dreams in whatever that may be!
PP: One thing I just love about you is how encouraging and supportive you are of other small shop moms. Can you talk a little bit about the small shop community you’ve found and how that could potentially help other moms?
BF: Thank you, I sure do love the community I've found through Instagram. As my son Elliot is a brand rep, I've found so many small shops that I adore, not just their products, but the person behind it! Most of the shops I've worked with are just like me, a mama hustling to provide for her family. As a small shop myself, I know the struggles of getting out there and how badly I wished someone would have gave me tips when first starting out. So, I'm lucky to have "met" quite a few moms that I can relate to, give advice, and listen to one another. It's amazing what can happen when you find a tribe of mama makers that support each other.
PP: Going back to your business, can you give us a little insight into why you find it to be so rewarding? What keeps you inspired?
BF: Through my creations, I hope to inspire others to follow their dreams! As someone that knows how hard it is to find that piece of happiness you're missing, it's also just as hard holding on to it. It's amazing getting messages from other mamas mentioning "because of you, I'm not giving up on my shop." Messages like that keep me motivated! As well as seeing all the lovely photos of my creations in their new homes and the many sweet reviews of how their children say they "no longer have bad dreams." It makes me so happy knowing others love my creations as much as I do!
PP: What would you consider to be your biggest goals for Nest of Craftiness?
BF: My goal is to just keep going. There have been so many times where I've thought about taking a break and just closing my shop. In those moments I'm always brought back to why I started, reflecting on why I love doing what I do. I love this creative outlet, it's brought me hope, happiness, and in each creation, I find a part of myself I never knew existed. I'm happy where I am now, but I'm excited to see where this shop will take me!
PP: We want to hear a little bit more about anything you have that’s coming up. Tell us what we can look forward to.
BF: There is always new decor being added to the shop every few weeks! I also do a monthly giveaway in my comments for a chance at winning $15 shop credit, be sure to check it out!
PP: Lastly, what is the #1 piece of advice you would give mamas who are considering running their own business?
BF: Do it, but don't rush it! You want to find and do something you truly love and have the passion for. Be authentic, set yourself apart, and make something unique. Not just something that's easy money, trendy, or something you stumbled across from another shop. Find YOU in the process, your story behind it, and stay true to yourself.