Father-daughter duo designing all-things personalized and top-notch stickers

My father and daughter inspired this shop.

Many years ago, my father sat me down for a heart-to-heart. We discussed my childhood and his demanding career as a doctor. My father shared one idea that I'll never forget. After all the hours of work and time away from family, there was nothing to pass on. It wasn't a regret. More of the advice my father wanted me to consider. Maybe if he could do it all over again, he'd do it differently.

Fast forward two decades, and I'm now a designer and father. Most of my career I've sold my time to employers or clients. Like my father, I find myself asking similiar questions. What will I leave of value once I retire? What can I create of value before I retire?

My daughter, Madelyn, loves to draw and animate using Procreate. So early in 2023, I was thinking of ways to support her creativity. I've always wanted to sell online and I've sold a little on eBay. I knew of Etsy and wondered if I could create and sell products that my children could benefit from in the future. Near the end of March 2023, I listed my first product on Etsy. The goal was to learn how to sell on Etsy and to encourage my children that creativity plus entrepreneurship could be a possible future path.

Then came a shock; I was laid off from my tech job. With no desire to return to the tech industry, what started as a hobby with my daughter suddenly became more urgent. More than ever, I was determined to become independent and focus on selling online. I experimented with different products and invested more time learning Etsy and its ecosystem. Fast-forward 9 months, MadeThis continues to grow with a focus on stickers and personalization. And, we're a few weeks away from launching our second Etsy store.

I'm committed to buying back my time, becoming independent, and building opportunities for my children.

November 2023