When I had the chance to photograph Christine Breton, creator and designer behind LaFabère, I was so excited to be able to document her creative process while she was working away in her lovely home studio. Christine is a graphic designer and artist who creates the most beautiful, timeless prints to celebrate life's milestones as well as fine art wedding invitations. You need to check her out on Etsy and her new website! Read below as she shares her thoughts on starting her business.
Number of years in business: 1
Briefly describe your business and why you do what you do:
I am a graphic designer who creates prints for life's milestones (weddings, babies, anniversaries,etc.) as well as fine art wedding invitations. I love what I do because it allows me to express my creativity while helping others celebrate the joyous moments in life that are worth remembering in a beautiful and customized way.
1. Looking back on your life, were there certain events or people that helped push you to follow your current path? Describe one of these key turning points along with any fears or challenges that may have held you back from pursuing your passion.
Becoming a mother was definitely the event that pushed me to follow my dreams. I want to be an example for them to follow their passions, that there is more to life than today's standard of work/life balance and success, and that they can be successful in whatever they wish to achieve.
I also have a friend of mine who switched careers to follow her passion for Interior Design, and talking with her at length about both of our hopes and dreams and taking the plunge into being an entrepreneur definitely gave me the encouragement and confidence to start my own business. The encouraging words and pep talks that I receive from my friends and family to follow my talents and to pursue my ideas and designs definitely motivate me to keep on this career path.
I've had the idea to start LaFabère for many years, and one of the fears that held me back from starting it all those years ago was the fear of failure. What if it didn't work out? What will people think of me if this project fails, and I don't sell anything or get any new clients? This journey has been scary and unsure at times, but also so fulfilling and rewarding in many new ways that I couldn't have imagined. So far, it's been the right choice for me.
2. How and when did you know you were pursuing the “right” career?
I know I'm pursuing the right career when I feel absolutely joy in my favourite aspects of my work. I feel joy when I'm painting new textures to feature in my designs. I feel joy when I'm researching and designing new prints and working with lovely brides on gorgeous wedding invitations. I feel joy when I'm sourcing new fabrics to use in products and sewing them onto prints and invitations. I feel joy when I get to work with my hands as well as my heart. I feel joy when I hear how my clients and customers are so happy with their designs and I am helping them document their important milestones in their lives.
3. What has been your biggest failure and how did you change as a result?
My biggest failure has been to consistently keep producing new designs and getting them up in my shop. Juggling this business, as well as other freelance design clients and motherhood is definitely a challenge. There are only so many hours in a day. But I've decided to approach this business with a sense of grace, and to do as much as I can, when I can. The fact that I still love what I do when I get the time to do it is so important to me, and affirming that I am still pursuing the right career for me at this stage of my life.
4. How do you define success?
Success for me is to be able to do what I love, and to have the ability to be more present with my young children in this stage of their lives.
5. Based on your experience, what advice would you give to your younger self?
I would tell my younger self that you are more capable than you give yourself credit for. I would tell my younger self to take more risks and not always make the safe and easy choices. I would tell my younger self to make the things that are important to ME, in MY life a priority, and to base my decisions on what is best for me and my family, and not any one else's standard for success. (I actually keep telling myself that last one ;)