Fernbank Studio is now over month old so I thought I would share the reasons why it was time to start afresh.
When I started Clarise Crafts in 2013, I had just quit my full time job in a repro house because I felt like I wasn’t really going anywhere. Now when I look back, I realise it was incredibly brave but being surrounded by self-employed family and friends it didn’t seem too out of the ordinary. One of my biggest inspirations was my Mum who ran a successful jewellery school and I regularly helped out with her weekend classes whilst I was still working. When it came to setting up my own business I decided to continue using her business name. I’m not sure whether it was because I considered it the less risky option or if it was purely a lack of imagination but I needed to set up quickly so I went with it.
5 years on (can you believe it!) and dawned on me that the name had never really signified anything to me and that I was feeling held back by it; I essentially just wanted my own identity. After a tough start to 2018 (you can read about it here) I started to think about how to get out of my lull and it took me until Summer (thank you, UK heatwave!) to realistically consider a change of name. Introducing…
I have had a number of logo iterations over the years (the perils of being a designer is you are never happy!) however changing a business name is a much bigger undertaking. It involves purchasing and redirecting domain names, email addresses, contacting suppliers…
Facebook spurred me to a speedy switch over. Naively I thought I could prep everything behind the scenes so I was ready for a relaunch and then just click a button, however it was not that simple. I had to apply to change the name, which they rejected unless I made an announcement about the name change on my page, expecting it to take a while but it was accepted in a few hours. Cue a mass panic trying to switch everything else over including website, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, blog!
Rebranding was about so much more than just changing a logo, I did lots of planning using the excellent Brand Brilliance book by Fiona Humberstone to really pin down who I wanted to be, which clients I wanted and just the overall feel about the business. Curiously, this was the most valuable part of the whole process as I’m feeling much more positive now and I’m looking forward the future. The extra hours spent at the computer editing and updating photos as part of the rebrand (an epic task when you have over 350 products!) have been so worthwhile. The fresher, more minimalist look is very much my personal style so it seemed the natural choice for my business too.
It’s quite strange to think I’ve only had this new name for a month as it feels ‘right’ and like I’ve always had it. Don’t be fooled into thinking choosing the name was an easy task though, I have a notebook full of terrible ideas which I’m considering burning on bonfire night. In the end, keeping it simple won and Fernbank is the street where I live and work. Working from home is a key part of how I run my business so it seemed appropriate that I get to celebrate that.
Of course there is still work to do as part of the rebrand but the biggest things are done so I can start to enjoy it and focus on what I love; designing and making! I hope you like the new branding as much as I do, I welcome any feedback or comments, you can contact me through any of the options below: