Designer Spotlight: Interview with Susan Petersen of Freshly Picked

Crazy cute Freshly Picked baby shoes + an Intierview with Susan Petersen on Beautiful Hello Blog

Hello!

I am so happy to have Susan Petersen visit us today! Susan created Freshly Picked, a super stylish leather crafting company, in 2009. Her hard work, commitment to quality, and huge amount of creativity have led to an amazing product line, thousands of happy customers and fans, and a trend of super-cute baby feet.  I mean really, what could be better than chubby baby feet in super adorable moccasins?  Nothing.
I love the “Freshly Picked story”.  It is real and down to earth.  It all began with some scrap leather (found at a yard sale) + the kitchen table + a lot of time + a LOT of creativity.  Susan’s story is inspiring, and it is full of hope.  If she can create a sustainable, hugely appreciated, passion-filled company with such unglamorous beginnings, there is hope for you and me!   …oh and BTW, the Kardashians may now be her biggest fans.
Susan Petersen is a crazy awesome designer and crafts person but she is also a super amazing mother (to two) and wife.  Gus, her youngest, started out as a foot model.  Her commitment to and love for her family is such a beautiful thing.
I’m going to stop talking now, and let Susan take it away!
Crazy cute Freshly Picked baby shoes + an Intierview with Susan Petersen on Beautiful Hello Blog
1. What inspired you to begin crafting your own creative “career”?
I always knew that I wanted to work from home and having children cemented that feeling. When I was looking for a career, I focused mainly on things that I would be able to do from home, which at the time wasn’t much. When I started Freshly Picked it was simply because a friend of mine had told me that she was going to make ‘stuff’ and sell it online. I thought to myself, for sure I can do that. So I taught myself how to sew and got started.
2. How did you take your business from a tiny, kitchen-table-dream, to what it is today?
Conan says it best, ‘If you work hard and are kind, amazing things will happen’.
 
3. How did you use your resources and passion to grow your business?  Any practical tips?
I’ve never taken out a loan or gotten a line of credit for Freshly Picked. I would have to hustle the current wares that I had in stock to make money to buy supplies to make more wares. When I first started I utilized my brothers business. He installs windows and he has one very undesired job in his business and that is ‘banging glass’. Essentially you take the old windows and bang out the glass so that you can recycle the aluminum that cases the windows. He had a large pile of old windows and I talked him into letting me bang glass and then letting me keep the aluminum so that I could recycle the aluminum. I would take the money from the recycled aluminum and buy supplies for the next project. It was such a small thing for my brother and such a HUGE thing for me. I’ve never forgotten his generosity and I’ve tried really hard to pay that generosity forward. The last couple of years have been surreal for me. I feel like I’ve been in the trenches for so long with our company and to experience the amount of success that we have over the past year has been incredible. I have to pinch myself to make sure that I’m not dreaming.
4. As a working mom, how do you find balance between work, life, kids, and creativity?
The thing with work-life-balance is that it’s a myth. It’s a mystical place where Unicorns and Ligers live. For me it all comes down to a set of choices and priorities. We try to take it one day at a time, sometimes I go to bed at night and there are dirty dishes in the sink, piles of laundry to fold and emails have been left unanswered, and some days I get it all done. I think more important than balance, is being willing to give yourself a break. Work your arse off and then revel in your success and learn from your failures. Don’t worry if you can’t get ‘it all’ done, it all will keep and you can do it tomorrow. Most importantly, surround yourself with family and employees that support you and give that support right back.
Thank you Susan!
Have a beautiful day everyone!
Check out Freshly Picked website, facebook page, and the always exciting instagram feed!  signature
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