Our Hei Day / Studio Tour. / sfgirlbybay

i met patricia, talent and owner of stationary brand our heiday, at a creative meet-up and was immediately drawn to her warm and genuine personality. her colorful and airy designs adorn cards, phone cases, wrapping paper, notebooks and prints and are sure to lift your spirits. and as patricia’s business and family grew this year, her sister donna hopped on as partner and the two have proven to be a wonderful team. be sure to peruse their beautiful products and enjoy the wisdom that patricia offers below.

Our Hei Day Studio Tour. / sfgirlbybay

were you working elsewhere before leaving to start your business?
I was on the path to becoming a lawyer when I realized that I couldn’t see myself sitting behind a desk doing lawyerly things for the rest of my career. I took a big leap of faith (read: desperation) and left after two years of law school at UCLA with nothing but a notebook of ideas and a power point to show my dad that I wouldn’t be bumming around for the rest of my life. Our Heiday was bred out of so much soul searching and I think that’s what gave it an extra boot when we launched.

Our Hei Day Studio Tour in L.A. / sfgirlbybay
was your new path motivated by a particular creative need or personal goal?
Definitely a creative need. If there’s any place that will make you aware of a vast black hole of creative need in your soul, it’s in a law library.

did you receive any particular advice that stood out when starting your own business?
I’m a big dreamer and knowing this about myself, I remember listening to a lot of podcasts at the start of my business to get a practical sense of what other entrepreneurs learned as they started their endeavors. There was one particular interview in Grace Bonney’s After The Jump podcast where the guest (to be honest, I forgot his name, but I remember what he said so clearly) emphasized how important it was not to underestimate the importance of having capital to sustain you. Not the business, but your life. I thought this was refreshing advice. There are so many stories about throwing caution to the wind and pouring everything one has into his or her grand idea, but we all have to survive somehow. Whether this means having 6 months to a year of savings or living out of your parents’ basement and loving on them real hard because they’re cooking your meals and allowing you to stay rent-free — whatever it is — it’s so important not to overlook the basic necessities because having these in order will better help you thrive as you focus all of your other energy on getting the business going.

sticker labels inside Our Hei Day studio in L.A. / sfgirlbybayOur Hei Day Studio Tour. / sfgirlbybay

where do you gain fuel that inspires your creative endeavors?
I love L.A. So much of my inspiration comes from being in the heart of downtown where I live, work, and play. There’s this raw energy here that is so contagious and it creates great community. Having inspiring people to work alongside is the perfect kind of creative fuel.

Studio Tour of Our Hei Day in L.A. / sfgirlbybayOur Hei Day Studio Tour in Los Angeles / sfgirlbybay

What is your favorite thing about your studio space?
The light! We work out of an old building and not having air conditioning in the summer isn’t the best, but you really can’t find windows like these anymore. We also face north, so we get the best of the morning and afternoon light without the sun directly hitting us.

rubber stamps inside the Our Hei Day creative studio / sfgirlbybaystudio tour in Los Angeles with Our Hei Day / sfgirlbybay

What are some of your work tools that you can’t live without?
I’m always reaching for the same lettering brush and I’d say I use white acrylic in every painting I’ve done, whether that’s as a mixing agent or straight on.

paint palette inside Our Hei Day Studio. / sfgirlbybay

what was the most unexpected aspect of putting together your business?
How quickly we’d grow. I don’t at all mean for that to sound pretentious, but I had been working out of an IKEA closet in our living room for 11 months post-launch in June 2014. After Our Heiday’s debut at the National Stationery Show in 2015, I had absolutely no idea that I’d be in a studio space with a team just a couple weeks after. I also had no idea that my sister and now business partner would leave her career and join me full time! All of this has been the biggest blessing and learning experience and I would’ve never thought that I’d enjoy cultivating a team and seeing us grow together as much as I do.

stationary, cards and phone cases by Our Hei Day. / sfgirlbybayOur Hei Day Studio Tour. / sfgirlbybay

What are the top three things someone should consider before changing careers or starting their own business?
From my experience, I’d say:

1. Consider whether you’re ready to embrace the business aspect of running a creative business. This entails so much more than just the creative and it will be what differentiates what you’re doing from an incredibly expensive hobby.

2. Do you have a support system? Starting your own business is an all-encompassing commitment — mental, emotional, physical, and financial. Having people you can turn to in the industry you’re in and in your personal life will make those tough days manageable and those milestones that much more exciting.

3. Think big beyond big but be practical. This goes back to my point above about capital and some of the best advice I held onto. Everyone has a different life circumstance so this can be as basic as making sure you’re able to live beyond work. It will make the sacrifice of starting a business far more sustainable.

Our Hei Day maker of paper goods studio tour. / sfgirlbybayartwork in progress at Our Hei Day studio. / sfgirlbybayOur Hei Day tape inside their creative studio in L.A. / sfgirlbybay

What are three books that changed your life?
Ooh, this is a tough one. There are so many books that have been gotten me through various seasons of life. These stand out to me in particular: A Million Miles in A Thousand Years by Donald Miller, and Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott and The Book of John.

Our Hei Day Studio Tour. / sfgirlbybay

What do you currently have playing on the studio’s turntable?
I so wish we had a turntable in our studio! Does a speaker count? I was beyond happy when Spotify started offering The Beatles albums and we had that on repeat for a long, long while. There’s something still so fresh about their sound.

Tour of Our Hei Day Studio. / sfgirlbybaylight and wall art inside Our Hei Day Studio. / sfgirlbybay

• photography by lily glass for sfgirlbybay.