Bedrooms, Designed started out as most small businesses do: Two women trying to juggle a passion and a full-time job. We both worked at a regional bank: Sarah was a teller, and I was a loan officer. Even as boring bankers, our bedrooms and homes were impeccably designed—and people noticed. As a result, friends, family, and second-degree acquaintances comprised a long list of our “weekend work”: interior design.
Eventually, this 75-hour week became too much for us to deal with. We were tired and rushing through the design jobs just to get a moment of rest. Eventually, we hit a crossroads. We had a design waitlist twenty people long, which was enough to pay for around a month of our bank salary. Knowing that we had the budgeting skills necessary to stretch that money into two months of living, we jumped; we decided to apply for a small business loan.
Our knowledge of financial wellbeing—specifically, our understanding of the slip-ups people made while applying for loans—practically guaranteed our start-up money. We applied for a small business loan at “our” bank; within a few weeks, we had the money necessary to be a fully-operational bedroom and interior design business. From there, we quit our bank jobs (finally!) and worked relentlessly to build up a clientele (it wasn’t too difficult, as we already had that waitlist of friends and family). We also worked to partner with other local businesses, offering design classes and complimentary services for shops in exchange for advertising.
Now, here we are: Three years and eleven new employees later, our bedroom and interior design studio is flourishing. We are living proof that, though starting a business is difficult, it is well within reach when you have community support and financial knowledge.