is branding & business visioning
for creative entrepreneurs.

Kathleen here. I spend so much time coaching other creatives, writing blog posts, and recording podcasts that sometimes I forget to share the stuff Braid does, you know… for a living. With that, I am so excited to share some of our recent branding work with you. Tara and I like to share advice and inspiration in this blog space and in our Letters for Creatives, but every once and a while we like to share what we’ve been creating, and how we’ve helped creative entrepreneurs get to a brand that finally feels like them. 

Enough talk, here’s some show, with some of these creatives, their brands, and what they have to say about the experience and the brands that finally feel – like them.

“After (too) much struggling—I help other creatives distill their ideas for a living, so I kept telling myself if I just worked harder, I could do it myself—I turned to Braid, and the instant I hired them, everything changed. I relaxed knowing I had the right team in my corner, but I also started taking myself more seriously; I had invested in my dream, and I knew I had to live up to that investment.”
- Erica Midkiff, Content Coach 

“After more than ten years of building a successful coaching practice, I knew it was time to expand my reach and start teaching other coaches how to do the same. But "launch new business" remained on my to-do list for more than two years because I couldn't find the time or get the clarity I needed to turn this new idea into reality. 

The project seemed too big and too nebulous. Until I met Team Braid.”
- Dallas Travers, Business Coach for Actors and Coaches

“After two meetings with Braid, they took my words and turned them into something clear and beautiful - something I am so proud and happy to share with the world. I do a lot of personal health work one-on-one with people, and getting that personal feel and interaction is something that I feel they translated beautifully onto the screen.”
- Lindsay Kluge, Herbalist 

“There is something magical in the Braid approach. We are delighted, excited and pleased to have worked with such fun and creative people."
- Gerry Flake and Kathryn M. Downing, Galileo Coaching

“Going through the Braid Method gave me the vision and courage to move forward with a new and fresh creative identity. What I had thought of as "distractions," became part of the larger story of my brand, my business, my creativity – my life. Braid didn't just slap a logo on my business and call it done. They took me through a process of discovering my life's purpose and work as a modern homesteader and edgy maker. I left the experience with a clear idea what DOONYAYA was all about.” 
- Dunja von Stoddard, maker and creative entrepreneur

“I am a writer/blogger who wanted to share what I have learned along my blogging journey, with other creative bloggers like myself. My personal website didn’t showcase what I had to offer, I felt “stuck”, and not sure how to fix it. Once I started working with Braid, I felt as ease because they “got me”!”  
Desiree Spinner, creative entrepreneur 

“I was so blown away during our meetings that I was often speechless. Me – a writer – without words. I’ve referenced the business vision guide so often, it would have tattered pages if it weren’t a PDF. They captured my brand story and services in a succinct, beautifully packaged way that really resonates with my dream (!) customers. And my brand is so awesome, I nearly died when I first saw it. It’s fun, fresh, and vibrant. I’m also happy to say that it’s all WORKING – people are knocking on my coaching door. And I wouldn’t be behind it if it weren’t for Braid."  
Nicole Christie, Coaching for Solopreneurs

“Braid refined my seemingly impossible ideas and ramblings into something clear, concise, and tangible. They captured the look and feel I wanted beyond my wildest dreams. The brand platform they created is perfect for me. I am absolutely in love with my logo!”
- Crystal Vaugn, Chef and Creative Entrepreneur

We’re for creative entrepreneurs who offer a service, like nutritionists, yogis, lifestyle coaches, writers, and designers. They are ready to leap from day job to dream job, or finally launch a brand for their new business that really feels like them – so they can look and feel like a boss. If this is you and you’re ready for help contact us or email me at and we’ll send you more details on what it looks and feels like to work with us – plus the nitty gritty details of exactly what you get, what to expect along the way, and how much it costs. 

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Our Braid ECourse Dream Customer Catching: Embrace Your Expertise and Attrack What You Track is now open for registration. So if you’re a writer, designer, photographer, consultant, or creative who is wanting to bring more of your personality and passion to your profession this ECourse is for you. 

Or if you’re needing more work / life guidance check out the DIY Coaching for Creatives Email Sessions – it’s just $40 and you can sign up and get this content straight to your inbox anytime! 


Tara here. Not all of us were born this way, came out of college this way, or even came out of our 9-to-5: ready for our closeup, ready to blog, ready to start our own business, ready to take on the world. A lot of us were just happy to be creatives with a fair shot of getting paid for what we do in a regular ol’ job, that still felt pretty dang special because at least we could be creative. Who cared if we could be ourselves, have a purpose, or even knew what a personal brand was – let alone need one. 

If you asked me what my personal brand was ten years ago, I would have thought of the movie Heathers, and how each Heather in the clique had a signature color that she would wear from her scrunchy down to the color of her croquet ball. In fact I declared that green was my signature color back in the ninth grade, and it stuck for the whole year – green tights, green faux marbled watch, green suede buckled flats, green little blazer with a peplum on the back. There was of course a darker takeaway from the movie, but the color thing is what stuck.

I think teens like me, who wanted to be special, but didn’t quite want to push the boundaries to the point of rebel – liked having a way to add this outer layer of “how I’m different” but still  feel comfortable in their own skin underneath it all. Why do you think the safely subversive Hot Topic stores took off like crazy at the turn of our century?

Fast forward to today, and it took me a while to get comfortable in my own skin as my own boss, to find that purpose within, and to curate that outer layer. But part of being in business and staying in business on your own terms is hinged on having a personal brand.

As a creative entrepreneurs in a wave of working for yourself, making your mark online, declaring your signature style, and explaining why to hire or buy you – most of us wish there was a store that we could go to and just pick out the crazy (but not too crazy) ensemble that would express who we are, but still feel special – different. Like us!

Where we could walk in and say: “ooh, I’ll take that logo, that website home page, that awesome photo, and this quote that declares my intent and is totally going to get repinned like crazy!”

But we know we better now. We know our purpose and our personal brand comes from within, and outer layer comes from curating a mix of sources, experiences and styles – not just one color. 

P.S. I’m lucky that my business partner and sister, Kathleen has always pushed the boundaries (total rebel in ninth grade, and a personal brand that went so beyond a comfortable outer layer, that no one would even know how to label her, let alone assign her a signature color.) So… that’s why if you haven’t already, you should take our Personal Branding Braid ECourse with Kathleen at the helm.

Our Braid ECourse Personal Branding: Blending Who You Are With What You Do is now open for registration. It will be in-session February 20-March 1. Learn more and sign up here. 

Or, if you want to hire us for your own one-on-one personal brand and business visioning and brand platform design you can find out how to hire us here. Plus, see what you will get (including some pretty nice client testimonials, aww, thanks you guys) here. 


Tara here. Let me share with you the question that always comes up when we are branding our creative entrepreneur clients, and it’s this: “What about my business name? Should I use my own personal name, or have a separate ‘business-y’ one?”  

First off, this question shouldn’t be a paralyzing one, because your business isn’t all about the name. What you do, and the style in which you share what you do with everyone else, gives your name context and meaning over time – like a child you’ve named Moonbeam who grows up to be Professor Moonbeam and no one thinks twice about it. (Ok, yep, that example may be a little extreme). 

Moonbeam aside, your personal brand is about your purpose, your creative expertise, and sharing and selling yourself in a way that blends who you are into what you do. But of course the name question is going to come up. For example, it’s the difference between an interior designer’s business being named Lisa Harris Designs (her own name) versus a name like Love Life Designs (a business-y name). 

So how do you decide if you use your own name as your business name, or a business-y one? It’s different for everyone. I’m typically on team “use your own name” unless you give me a good reason not to. So let’s start with those: 

1. Good Reasons for Not Using Your Own Name. These reasons are pretty cut-and-dry, and we’re not going to argue you on them:

You have a business partner and don’t want to sound like the firm of Last Name & Last Name. Fair enough, that’s why we’re not called Street & Shannon Creative, but instead Braid Creative. But, we do our best to get our own names into the mix whenever we possibly can. 

You plan on selling your business in the future so you don’t want your persona so tightly tied to the biz. In this case, again, you are the one who’s going to build this business that gets so much attention and success you’re able to sell it. Your greatest asset besides the actual idea, is your personal brand and creative expertise. Consider attaching your name to the business name for now, like “Business-y Name from Your Name Here.”

You already have a lot of brand recognition with your current business-y name. Usually this is when you’ve had a blog that had a great name you made up, and now it’s turned into your business. Everyone follows, likes, subscribes to and knows this blog and/or business as that name. I’d say don’t change your name, but be sure they know it’s linked to you. You are the expert behind the biz, and over time you may want to try your hand at a new business – make sure your getting your personal brand into that mix.

2. So-So Reasons For Not Using Your Own Name. These reasons are much more “go with your gut” factors, and make the decision more personal, but also not as clear:

You are single and might get married, or married and might get divorced. Kinda sucky that this is now tied to your business decision in a let’s-get-all-riled-up-about-the-patriarch way. But that aside, if you are a creative working for herself (or himself too!) your family is always going to be so tied to your business and business decisions. It’s personal that way. So… being tied or untied to your last name (if you’re not keeping, or didn’t keep your maiden name) is a legitimate reason to think over whether or not to use that Last Name in your business name.

You worry about privacy. This one has come up a very few and rare times for us, probably because 90% of creatives working for themselves (that is not a real stat, it’s a made up one by me) are all over social media, because that’s how they get work, get connections, and show up and get seen. But if you are hyper-aware of your safety or privacy because of personal circumstances or just your own comfort level with sharing yourself online, then go with the business-y name.

You don’t like the way your name sounds or think people can’t pronounce it. Okay this is where my bad cop flares up. Your name is not any weirder than anyone else’s name, except for people named Jane and John Doe (but really, even that “h” in the John is weird and no one tongue-trips over that)! But this is also where Kathleen’s good cop steps in and says, “hey, if you feel weird about your name, then don’t use it.”  But like the formula I shared earlier, do this “Business Name from/or/with Your Name Here.”

3. If You Don’t Have Any of These Reasons… Use Your Name for Your Business. This is where you have the advantage over the big guys. You are a person, and people love following, reading and buying from people! It’s also part of why you don’t work for anyone else but you! And, if you are like most of the creatives we work with, your ideas change over time, in five years from now you may want to go after a completely different business dream – your name is the only thing you have to take with you!

If I haven’t convinced you, and you must use a business-y name, then give it meaning. Sometimes that’s hard to do in a couple words (that’s why I’m going to be sharing a future post on how to pair your name with a tagline). But if you can’t make a few words say everything you’re about, which a name can rarely do – make sure it sounds like you, not what you think other people expect from a name, Professor Moonbeam.

P.S. We don’t name our clients. We often get asked to name them when we’re hired to plot out their brand and business vision and then write and design their brand platforms. But it’s like naming someone else’s baby. It’s gotta come from you. We can help that baby’s name have meaning, and have a great story, and have a vision for who they can become. We can even dress that baby and teach it to walk. But the name – it comes from you.

Our Braid ECourse Personal Branding: Blending Who You Are With What You Do is now open for registration. It will be in-session February 20-March 1. Learn more and sign up here. 

Also, check out Kathleen’s new podcast called Being Boss for more creative business how-to. 


Braid Creative & Consulting is branding and business visioning for creative entrepreneurs. The Braid Blog is where we share weekly insights and resources for creatives.

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