Getting to know Fran from Freeborboleta

As a blogger, have you ever considered ordering business cards for yourself? Not only are they handy to include in packages when you participate in swaps or giveaways, but they’re essential if you ever attend a conference. Before I went to the Type-A Con in Atlanta, I reached out to Fran from Freeborbleta to see if she could design some new business cards for me. I’ve heard nothing but fantastic things about Fran, so asking her if she designed business cards was a no brainer. My only problem was that I had no idea what my new design would look like then, but I knew I wanted something to reflect my site. We bounced a few ideas back and forth and in record time, she produced something perfect:
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How cool is that little notepad? Thank you, Target for your $1 stash at the front of the store!

I always keep a stash of these little guys with me in my wallet and my purse. You never know when you’ll want to hand one out. I’ve given them to arts and crafts dealers at markets, restaurant/business owners if I’m thinking about featuring their business, and I’ve even given a few to my husband—you never know who he may meet!

Working with Fran was wonderful. She was creative, patient (always essential when you’re picky like me!), made edits quickly, and she even had them printed for me. Basically, it was perfect!

Fran’s been hanging out on my sidebar for the past month (and is back again next month) and because of that, I want to give you a little more of an inside look into who she is. She “sat down” for an interview with me, and if you read all the way to the end, she’s giving away a little something to one of my readers! 

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Hi Fran! Before we get started, I have to ask about your blog and shop’s name. What in the world does Freeborboleta mean and how did you come up with it?

Oh man, this could get embarrassing fast. Freeborboleta is two words, free + borboleta. Borboleta is butterfly in Portuguese, which is totally random. Here’s for the embarrassing part: back when I was in middle school I was OBSESSED with butterflies so when I went to sign up MSN Messenger or something along those lines, I wanted something to do with butterflies but I didn’t want to just be “ButterfliezLover” or something random like that. So I came up with the idea of having butterfly in a different language. The “free” comes from the name Francisca, which means the free one. I combined them and boom, and freeborboleta was born. It’s a name I’ve used for so long in social networks, and the like, that I just kind of kept using it. (Are you judging me yet?)

No judgment here! Your designs are wonderful and so many of my favorite bloggers have their sites designed by you, when did you get interested in designing blogs?

I know this sounds weird but it just sort of happened. I’ve always been interested in HTML, CSS, and web design. I used to build sites on Yahoo’s Geocities when I was younger and when those were still around. Then when MySpace came out everyone downloaded themes, but I was a little OCD and wanted to make sure everything looked just right, down to the pixel, so I always modified them and made my own as it were. So then when I started blogging, I always did my own designs. Then one of my blog friends asked me if I could help her with hers. I did, and blogged about it because it was fun. Then other people ask for help, and soon people that I didn’t even follow asked for designs, so I started charging money and it just took off from there. Since I started, I’ve taken a lot of classes and I’ve learned SO MUCH; I’ve fallen in love with the whole process.

Do you have a favorite site that you’ve designed? Don’t be shy—brag a little bit!

Oh man. This is hard! I feel like some of these are my children, I’ve put so much work into them. BUT, if I have to pick… I’d say my top three are: The Tangerine, Little Pink Book, and Scattered Seashells. I think these three designs really capture what my style is like and I honestly couldn’t be happier with the way they turned out! There’s literally not one thing I would about any of them. 

Speaking of style, describe your stye in three words.

Oh, this is always so hard. Clean, feminine, and modern? We’ll go with that. 

You also have an Etsy shop. Why did you decide to branch out and offer more than blog designs?

It was a combination of two things. First, web/blog design is half graphic design, half coding so at times I’d have a blogger ask me to do business cards that match their new blog design. Second, my mom has had an etsy shop since before etsy was cool, and she would always say “Why don’t you make things and sell on there?” but I never knew what I’d make. Then, one day it just sort of clicked; I could do business cards and art prints! So it just sort of flowed naturally after that.

What are your three favorite items in your shop right now?

I’m partial to the art prints on my shop; I love working on those! My three favorites right now are… “But first, coffee” because there’s very few things I can do before my morning coffee, “I love you to the moon and back”, and the Venn Diagram print, and I’m tooting my own horn here but, because I think it’s just so clever. 

When you’re not creating new blogs or items for your shop, what are you most likely doing?

Working on homework for my masters program or reading—lots of lots of reading (both for pleasure and for school). If it’s Sunday then I’m watching football with my husband and obsessively checking how my fantasy team is doing; I can get a little competitive, oops.

As a military wife, you have to move often. If you had to give a new military wife one piece of advice, what would that be?

Get to know the area you live in and don’t be afraid to walk up to someone and just talk to them. I’m still working on this last one (I can be really shy, almost painfully so), but you never know, maybe this other person is also knew and needs to meet someone as well.

I know you’re a Starbucks aficionado —what’s your current go-to, favorite drink?

Is it really that obvious? Here I thought I was playing it cool! My current go-to drink is the peppermint mocha. I love it when the red cups are out, peppermint mochas just taste better.

Is there anything else you’d like to mention?!

I’d just like to thank you (Jessica) for having me over, it’s been a blast! I’m also having a Black Friday/Cyber Monday Sale from this Friday until Tuesday (11/29 – 12/3) for 20% off on the entire shop! Use the code: thanks2013.

Thanks for chatting, Fran! 

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 Now here’s your chance to own a piece of Freeborboleta. She’s giving away one 5×7 or 8×10 print from her shop to one lucky reader. Just follow the prompts below to enter!

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Want your blog or Etsy shop featured here? Sponsor Jessica Lynn Writes today!

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