Sarah Pendlebury & Laura Milton, Fair Day, Toronto, ON
The idea for Fair Day grew out of us telling each other stories of places we had been, things we had seen, and cool stuff we had bought along the way. When we hosted our first shopping event in October 2014, it was important to us that every product we had for sale told a story. When we launched, we were still fine tuning our brand, and we were also on a budget and it was a very tight one. We had friends help us with design and photography, and we used the cheapest options we could find to set-up our website. At first we loved it, but once we had been up and running for a while, we re-evaluated and decided we needed something that looked a little more polished. We found that we did not have the skills necessary to manipulate the logos and images we had, or to really step-up our website. It was time to bring in some professionals.
We were now willing (and able) to pay but still had to be mindful of our budget. We started reaching out to get quotes from several web designers, but this proved to be much more challenging than we had ever expected. We were surprised when most wouldn’t even return our initial phone calls or emails and we were shocked when someone who at first seemed interested, just stopped answering our emails.
As new entrepreneurs with little experience in this aspect of our business, we weren’t sure if we were asking the right questions, and we obviously weren’t talking to the right people. This was completely out of our wheelhouse. We were also nervous that a web designer wouldn’t truly understand our brand. In the back of our heads, we could hear our mentor telling us to focus on our mission and reminding us about what sets us apart which, of course, is our story.
We happened to meet a designer at a flea market. He had his own booth selling unique products with a very specific story behind them. We were talking about our experience as a new online business that also goes to markets (experiences he had already had), and he offered to try his hand at redesigning our logo. He was even willing to work within our budget. After our first email exchange later that week, we knew he had done his homework. He gave us some initial designs which were inspired by batik, a dying technique used by our fair trade partners in Ghana. He truly understood our story, and more importantly, he understood that our story is what is most important to us.
Our rebranding is still a work in progress, but we’ve found that by both keeping an open mind and sticking to our guns and being persistent, we were finally getting the results we were looking for.
Stay tuned for Fair Day’s new rebrand coming soon!
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