We had the good fortune of connecting with Ciara Shay and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ciara, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Hello! My name is Ciara Shay, and I LOVE weddings! During the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic, I (like many brides) experienced a few hiccups with my own wedding plans… In the midst of the world’s undesirable predicament, I found solace by creating my own wedding invitations and signage. By keeping the creativity flowing, I was able to de-stress and discover peace of mind. Designing unique items to help personalize my wedding brought back the joy of wedding planning and restored what I thought I had lost. After designing several custom goods for my own wedding, I wanted to help other brides (and grooms) do the same! Consequently in April 2020, Ciara Designs was born. With the help of a few good friends, I took on a number of design jobs in the Manvel/Pearland area and spent all of my time promoting Ciara Designs on social media (Follow us @_ciara_designs_). Our mission at Ciara Designs is to make brides, grooms and their families happy through creativity and customization. Ciara Designs specializes in bouquet preservation, wedding signage, invitations, menus, programs and other stationary. The sky’s the limit when it comes to what we can create together for your big day!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Ciara Designs is a wedding boutique that specializes in designing custom items that add a personal touch to a couple’s big day. We have specifically carved out a niche in the local wedding industry through our bridal bouquet preservation services. We are most excited for this area of our business and look forward to working with brides to transform their bouquets into priceless family heirlooms for years to come! Owner, Ciara Shay, has an extensive career in graphic design which provides this small business with a keen eye for detail and a unique approach to designing custom signs, invitations and preserved floral displays. Over the course of her design career, Shay has worked in the realms of advertising and higher education. She has designed a variety of assets from eye-catching social media posts to in-depth annual reports. One of the company’s biggest challenges thus far has been wedding industry exposure. By continuing to build genuine connections and strong relationships with local vendors and clients, Ciara Designs is thoughtfully making a name for itself in Brazoria County and the surrounding Houston area.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Houston is such an amazing city, and there is much to do far and wide! While a trip to the Galleria, Discovery Green and the museum district downtown is a definite MUST, there are many unique gems on the outskirts of our city that provide a ton of down-home fun! For the best feel-good, country comfort food, look no further than The Jay Cafe located in Needville, TX! Don’t forget to grab a slice of coconut cream pie before you leave! A day-trip to NASA Johnson Space Center also makes the list. There is so much to see and do – you can easily spend hours walking around and touring this amazing space. Dare I say it, that place is “out of this world!” One of my other favorite places to visit is a small business located in Manvel, TX that serves the best shaved ice in the area! Weekley’s Shaved Ice is a quick stop off Highway 6, and has the best customer service and sweet treats to make you smile.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have so many people I want to thank for their encouragement and support in launching Ciara Designs! My husband, Daniel, is my number one inspiration for all that I do! His unwavering love and support is the reason I am able to chase my dreams every day. I also want to thank my mom, Lisa, for fostering my love of design and creativity. She helped me preserve my wedding bouquet, and I fell in love with the process. Now, I am helping other brides preserve their special florals for years to come! I also want to take a moment to shoutout a few local vendors whose mentorship has helped launch my small business. On Cloud9 Events in Alvin, TX is an extraordinary wedding and event planner who will forever be family to Ciara Designs. The Oaks at Oak Plantation located in Rosharon, TX is a show-stopping wedding venue. I want to thank The Oaks for hosting my wedding day and for giving me my first booth at a wedding venue open house. Last but not least, I want to thank EventSmith Productions of Santa Fe, TX for their guidance in all things photography, design and floral! Ciara Designs is blessed to have such an amazing tribe of support in Brazoria County!
Facebook: Ciara Designs
Invitation Photo Credit: Pedigo Photography