We are so excited and honored to share an interview that we had with (the great) Elise Blaha Cripe on Elise Gets Crafty.
We have been following Elise’s work for years and had such a blast speaking with her, we hope you enjoy.
We also wanted to repost an article we wrote almost a year ago about several things we have learned about business from Elise over the years!
What We Learned About Business from Elise Blaha Cripe
Elise Blaha Cripe "makes stuff like it's her job."
She makes things herself and then shares the process, tools, and product of that creativity with the world. She's the founder of Get To Work Book, a pioneer blogger, and the host of Elise Gets Crafty, a great business about craft, small business, and life. She's also been a big inspiration to us as we start businesses and try to live creative, authentic lives.
Here are 5 things that we learned from Elise's work that can apply to any business that comes from personal passion:
1. Turn it into a project!
As she talks about here, Elise has a knack for turning her passions into cohesive, ambitious projects with a goal, a beginning, and an end. In 2011, she baked 40 different loaves of bread, in 2014, she made and sold 29 different handmade projects, and last year, she made and gave away 30 DIY projects. This approach gives her structure while engaging all of us in her journey.
2. Use what you do naturally.
Elise makes stuff, so her business revolves around that. She's a mama, so the adventure of integrating motherhood, creativity, and business is a core topic. She reads, so she shares her recommendations. Sometimes we think we need to develop a new skill or identify an obscure passion in order to have a business. Elise shows us that your "normal" can be inspiring to the world. (Elise's "normal" is over at her gorgeous instagram.)
3. Be concrete and vivid.
Elise stands out because she shares the little details that make it hard or inspiring or interesting to make things. She shares when her quilt gets tricky and where she bought that teal tape and how she actually makes her to-do lists. She shares how she started a podcast and what to buy a new mother. It makes her work useful and it makes it fascinating.
4. Keep at it.
Elise, like most people, is an "overnight success" where overnight is actually more than 10 years. She is wildly consistent -- she just keeps making things and sharing content, day after day, for multiple years. This isn't to say that success has to take a long time. But it does take consistency.
5. Don't worry so much about the structure.
She started with her blog and then later had the projects and eventually a store, along the way some ecourses, and finally Get To Work Book. So many times, people get stuck on questions about how to "frame" their business, in terms of the name, or how to integrate multiple projects, or what the website will look like. The truth is that when you're starting, you can't yet imagine the shape it will take. In Elise's case, she created a landing page that linked to multiple project pages / sites and also has a whole separate site for her Get To Work Book. So start somewhere and worry about structure later.
Thanks for your beautiful work, Elise! Way to go!
All pictures are Elise Blaha Cripe's and can be found in their original glory over at her website. For her take on business and creativity, check out Elise Gets Crafty. For her phenomenal, inspiring, and very useful planner, check out Get to Work Book. She's also great on Twitter and Instagram.