female founder feature: robyn blair davidson of byrobynblair
you know that feeling as a little kid when you had a pumpkin basket full of fresh halloween candy all mixed up and colorful and ready to make all your sugary dreams come true?! this is like that.
between wall art, candy dishes, phone cases + jewelry boxes, byrobynblair custom gifts satisfy our sweetest desires + make all our nostalgic candy dreams come true. grab your favorite candy and read robyn’s story!
tell us the story of how you got started. have you always been an artist?
i actually had no intention of making candy into a full-time business or becoming an artist! i was starting to care more about the things in my home and making them a reflection of who i am. at the end of the day, i wanted things around me to make me smile. one day, i was inspired by candy in a bowl on my coffee table and made my first piece for myself to hang in my apartment. after my friends and family saw it, they asked if i would make one for them and the rest is history!
tell us about the process from first having the idea for your art to actually launching? what was the most difficult part and is there something you wish you knew at the time?
when i had that first thought of what i wanted to make, i started googling shadow boxes and going to arts and crafts stores to find what i envisioned. but, i couldn’t find anything like what i had in mind! i designed and created a piece to be thin enough to hang on the wall as fine art but thick enough to have the depth to allow real candy in the piece. when i made my first piece, i hung it on my wall and it made me smile. i felt success in creating exactly what i had first envisioned.
getting any business off the ground is a difficult process, but my decade of experience working for a contemporary brand (which i helped start as well) gave me the knowledge on how to be resourceful and figure things out on the fly. this played a huge part in me finding a place to cut plexi and build my own custom shell for my pieces.
what was the first piece you ever did and how has your art changed since then? do you have a favorite?
the first piece i ever made was a frame filled with dubble bubble with hot pink writing that said “in case of emergency break glass.” it’s still my favorite to this day! some things have changed since the beginning, like the way i hang my pieces, some quality perfection with the plexi, and the glue i use to help preserve my pieces.
do you have team members who help you make the pieces? at what point did you decide you needed to hire and how did you find the right people?
i do! from the very beginning i knew i couldn’t do it all myself. the first person i brought on was someone to handle all of my financials, invoicing, quick books, etc. this has allowed me to focus on everything else!
at the stage i’m at right now, it’s a mixture of energy, trust, and skill. i have to feel good about the person i’m bringing on and spending a tremendous amount of time with, and of course they need to add value and be an expert on something i’m not. that something that everyone should look for when making a new hire – finding someone they’ll enjoy spending every day with and who can bring a new skill set to the team.
you created a first of its kind concept, which can present challenges when entering the market. what was your marketing strategy and messaging to start and has that changed? what has been your best marketing “platform” in terms of generating inbound commissions?
i created a piece for myself without thinking about it any further than knowing i wanted to hang it on my wall. when i saw the response from friends and family, i knew it was something that could be in other people’s homes and make them smile. it sounds so simple, but it’s really the foundation of why i do what i do. there was no marketing strategy or messaging thought out past the way i felt about my work and choosing to share it. instagram has been the best platform to share my creations with the world and it’s how a lot of my clients find me.
you recently expanded brb into candy dishes and a line of prints with dormify. why did you decide to expand your product offering + how do you choose the right collaborations?
i launched prints with dormify because i think they’re a phenomenal brand with an engaged audience of people that would enjoy my art. i also wanted a price point that was more accessible and dormify was the perfect brand to do that with.
my candy dishes started similar to how i began my wall art. i thought of something i wanted on my coffee table and figured out how to make it. the candy dishes are another way to bring happiness into people’s homes.
collaborations can be amazing if they’re the right collaboration. working with too many people can be confusing if it’s not well thought out and purposeful. i have had to say no to people i would love to work with because they weren’t the right fit at that moment, but there’s always other opportunities down the road!
editor’s note: all of robyn’s collaborations make perfect custom gifts! and luckily for you, we also happen to have a chic + custom gift box. peep the bottom of the fill for our blankbox + byrobynblair pop of color custom gift idea!
what else can we expect from by robynblair?
make a [sweet + colorful] moment with blankbox + byrobynblair!
and here you thought we were just custom gift boxes! we love custom gifts too, especially when they’re sweet + colorful.
brighten someone’s day, home + life with a blankbox filled with a candy dish, phone case or jewelry box from byrobynblair. best part: they can keep their ‘checker me out’ blankbox + byrobynblair candy dish for the perfect neutral + pop of color coffee table centerpiece!
*all product images, press images, and headshot images are property of robyn davidson and byrobynblair
**this is not a sponsored post. all obsessions are 100% real
all images are property of respective companies