We had the good fortune of connecting with Meesha Farzaneh and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Meesha, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I was working a consulting position for about 3.5 years, and I just felt like I was going through the motions. It wasn’t doing anything to excite my heart or had much room to grow. I was thinking about how some people work for a company for years, and sometimes get laid off because of issues that are out of their control. The thought of not being in control of my own financial independence and future was something that really bothered me. I decided that the only way I could have more control over my career was to build it from the ground up myself.
Please tell us more about your art. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
My art is very ethereal. A lot of my designs are inspired by powerful female archetypes in mythology and folklore. With my Medusa line, for example, everything is made by hand. Most polymer clay artists use cutters or templates to make their shapes. We hand roll, shape and detail each snake by hand, every single time! It is a lot of work but the final product is really beautiful and one of a kind. I got to this point in my career by continuing to show up. Honestly. I felt like I was running a marathon for 2 years. There are so many obstacles and problems that need to be solved on top of handmaking, packing, shipping, managing marketing efforts, inventory, and customer service on a daily basis. If you haven’t made a serious commitment to making it work, it’s going to be hard to push through that every day. I made sure that I remembered my “why” and I posted affirmations and mantras on my studio wall as a reminder. I worked 70-80 hour weeks, missed out on a lot of super fun parties, and quit my part-time job. This may not be the right way for others to do it, but it worked for me. I’ve learned that the problems won’t ever go away as an entrepreneur. As you grow, new obstacles will come your way and you have to be willing and ready to solve them. I have also learned to implement a better work-life balance because burnout is a real thing and it will catch up to you!! I want readers to know that they CAN actually do what they love, if they are willing to work towards their goals and not give up. It won’t happen overnight, and there are more layers than one could imagine, but it can be done and if they truly want it bad enough, you can create it. An idea blooms into reality when it is followed by action. I created my business because I was unhappy with my life and where my future was headed. It took me having to be stuck in bed and recovering from numerous surgeries to force myself to reflect on the uncomfortable truth and find a new way to create a life that made me feel fulfilled. The art that I design comes from the deepest part of my heart and it is made with so much love and good intentions. I love the idea of my customers opening a package with a handmade item and handwritten note. It feels like a big hug!!
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
Well, if this was pre-pandemic Austin, these would have been my go-to’s: Brunches would be at Junes, Cafe no Se, Pearlas, Swedish Hill, Po Boys Food Truck Coffee shops would be at Cenote, Better Half, Halcyon Happy hours would be at the line hotel balcony. East Austin Hotel balcony, and the speakeasy behind Buenos Aires cafe Lunches would be at Vinegarette, Blue Dahlia Cafe, Austin Daily Press Dinners would be at Uchi, Suerte, Buffalina, Red Ash Bars would be Whistlers, Pershing, Garage bar, Last Straw Activities would include paddleboarding on lake Austin, Barton Springs, walking across the bridge as the bats fly out each sunset
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I read this book called You Are A Badass at Making Money By Jen Sincero. It really got me pumped and helped me get in the right mindset to make some moves and get over my imposter syndrome. I also had one-on-one brainstorming and coaching sessions with Kara Pendl here in Austin, TX. She really helped me work through steps to get to the next level! I have an incredibly supportive partner, family and friends. The Austin community is also a very nurturing and supportive place to grow and thrive as an artist!
Jacqueline Franquez, Daniel Nguyen, Puta Poetry