Welcome to my blog :)
My name's Leigh-Ann and I love life :) I live in Winnipeg Canada with my dog Lola in a cute little house, only 5 minutes away from my family (Mom and Dad, Kody, Amanda and Matt, Olivia and Kennedy). Freckled Nest is my career (freelance design, crafts & teaching, business support and blogging) and I love love love doing what I do :)
I think of my blog like a sister. It's where I 'call' excitedly once a day (sometimes twice), with whom I can share, learn and grow, catch-up, be vulnerable, celebrate, be understood, tell funny stories & mishaps... just like when I'm with my sister (whose my best friend), my blog is where I feel most connected with myself. I'm writing to you like we're sisters :)
Some of my favorite things are: thrifting, going to the cabin, lemon water, swimming, taking pictures, eating at restaurants, coloring with my nieces, working, bonfires, sleeping in, wrinkly puppies, blogging, birds that fly in clusters, making things with my hands and time with my family and friends. I'm young at heart with an old soul and I'm excited to share our beautiful world through my eyes. I hope you'll feel sunshine here :)
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I started Freckled Nest as a hobby in 2006 because I was creating too much stuff that I loved to make but didn't need (x12), so I thought I'd replenish my supplies by selling the growing pile of albums and embroidery. In 2006, I started my blog as a place to record my journey, both in life & company and soon after, I opened an etsy shop :) My childhood dream of owning a store was coming true and I was giddy!
As news of Freckled Nest spread (blog + shop) and I developed more signature custom products, I began filling orders instead of just selling extra stuff I'd made, and I couldn't keep up. I could count on FN as a second income and the dream of one day doing this full time started developing! I continued working at my full time job as a secretary (and before that, a Nanny for 4 years) and I worked almost full time on Freckled Nest, growing and growing so that one day I could put all my eggs (FN pun) in that basket :)
After lots of development and preparation, I left my stable job in 2008 and was independently employed, by myself :) I focused on custom items including commissioned mini albums made from scratch, custom embroidered tote bags for crafters, and I began learning design in a self-taught, round about way. My unusual design methods and/or style caught the eyes of others and I began offering blog banners in my etsy shop. That quickly developed into a roster of custom blog items and I was really enjoying design, even more than crafting (which I also LOVE). I was in a creative bliss and I constantly had work lined up... things were going well :)
Recognizing the popularity of my design work, I created two packages (design info here) that offer a completely custom designed blog in a signature Freckled Nest style :) Of all the things I make, I enjoy designing blogs the most because I love getting to know my clients and playing detective to figure out what their perfect blog looks/acts like, then creating it... it's very fun and rewarding :)
In 2009, Jill Munro and I developed the Indie Business Online Course that focuses on Starting, Surviving and Succeeding in your creative small business. For the first few years, we taught the annual Indie Business with a featured/contributing celebrity teacher and worked with over 1500 people creating or developing their small business.
Through 2010, I co-taught Style School (an online class with Elsie), contributed to Red Velvet Summer Camp and created & co-taught Home Ec (an online sewing class) with Rachel Denbow and Courtney Tucker. Home Ec is now a take it at your own pace e e-course, available here.
In November 2010, I made big goals for the year ahead and realized I need a business partner :) I could only think of one perfect person, Kyla Roma and she said YES! Kyla recently quit her full time job and is now a co-owner and FN's Marketing Manager and she's thrilled to also be living her dream as a full time creative :) We have an office in downtown Winnipeg and we have become best friends over the past year. Watch our announcement video here.
Freckled Nest has a team of 6 designers, 5 developpers and a rad customer service manager. We're a small company with big hearts and passion for what we do :)