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Life & Work with Shay Little of Cary

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shay Little.

Hi Shay, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start, maybe you can share some of your backstories with our readers.
Hi! I’m Shay, creator of What More Can I Shay. I am also a Freelance Designer in Cary, NC. I always knew I wanted to do something where I could be creative and work with my hands. However, I did not know what career that could be. As an NCSU Fashion and Textile Management graduate, I thought I would have to move to NY and work for a fancy fashion company. Luckily for me, I got the only job interview I ever did. I became a Sock Designer. Something I had never even considered was in my field, and I did not have to move, so I took the job. It turned out that I loved it and continued doing it for the next decade until I decided last year (July 2021) that I no longer wanted to work for a corporation. Now, I am in the early stages of developing my own small business that focuses more on my initial dreams of creating a product and providing a design service for someone based on their ideas.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Not at all. I feared everything: failure and even success. I knew I felt unfulfilled, but I did not know how to remedy that. I kept thinking about my “side hustle,” but I never had the time for it or felt I had used up all of my creativity in the office. My biggest obstacle was letting go of a consistent, well-paying job with benefits. It was terrifying, but it was keeping me from growing. While most people my age had started and stopped multiple jobs, I had stayed at the same one for over a decade. I had wanted to leave long before I did, but the optimist in me hoped I would be promoted or magically get a huge pay increase. Once I decided enough was enough, it opened a new set of struggles. Will I be able to pay my bills? Health insurance is how much?! My anxiety was at an all-time high. I quit my job without having a new one lined up. I had no money coming in. I was living off my savings. Some may call this poor planning, but it was the best decision for me and my mental health at the time. It then took me 5 months to earn an income as a Freelance Designer. It would be another 3 months before I started seriously thinking about What More Can I Shay as more than just something on the side. Even today, I am still struggling to believe in myself. That person will want to come to me (of all people) for a product or service when there are so many other options in the market, but I am learning my worth and know that despite having other options, they can count on me to turn their vision into a reality.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about what you do?
What More Can I Shay specializes in many things. I dabble in everything from customization and personalization of products such as t-shirts, koozies, tumblers, and keychains to small event planning for baby showers, birthdays, and brunches. I have designed stickers, bookmarks, personalized vinyl decals, customized onesies, nursery signs, and shadow boxes. I was even commissioned to design wrapping for a food truck. Seriously, I have done it all, everything in between, and can do so much more!

My goal is to help you turn whatever idea you have in your head into an actual product. Be it party favors for a baby shower or t-shirts for your family reunion. I want to be able to provide a service and a product you can be happy with because it is what you saw for yourself and just needed my help to bring to life.

What sets What More Can I Shay apart from others is that your experience is completely customizable. I want to help make YOUR vision real. So many people already have great ideas but do not see themselves as creative or have the means to make something. That is where I step in.

What do you like and dislike about the city?
I love so many things about Raleigh. Besides being born here, it is just a big enough city for me! It is perfectly located. Not too far from the beach or the mountains. It is also very diverse. So many people are drawn here, including big companies. The thing I like least is that we tend to be overlooked as an up-and-coming city. It is a cool place to live (minus the pollen and summer humidity.) I think that Raleigh should be on the same list as NYC and LA. At least I want Raleigh to be on that list.

Pricing:

  • Onesies Starting at $10
  • T-Shirts Starting at $15
  • Decals Starting at $5
  • Stickers Starting at $2
  • Keychains $4.50

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Kasha Little

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