Meet the Cartel: Rashida Coleman-Hale

Meet the Cartel: Rashida Coleman-Hale

Welcome back to our interview series Meet the Cartel, a spotlight on Big Cartel shop owners. Today we'd like you to say hello to Rashida from Rashida Coleman-Hale Goods, a designer and author from California.

RCH_Headshot - Rashida Coleman-Hale.jpg

How did you get into your art?

I'm an illustrator, surface designer, and published author and my background is in Fashion Illustration. I've been drawing ever since I could pick up a pencil and it's literally my most favorite thing to do. I got my start in fabric design as a stay-at-home mom blogger and sewing book author in 2009. I've been designing fabric for well over a decade now and have over 30 collections under my belt.

I'm currently a designer at Ruby Star Society and have designed fabric collections with Cloud9 Fabrics and Timeless Treasures, and I have created art for companies such as Bloom Global, Maisonette, Petite Plume, and Winter Water Factory.

I first opened my shop in 2009 to sell signed copies of my books, "I Love Patchwork" and "Zakka Style." It sort of evolved over time to things that I had sewn, my fabric, art prints, enamel pins, and woven throws. It's always been a dream of mine to sell items with my art on it! I'm excited to add more items to that lineup in the near future!

Why did you choose Big Cartel?

It's SO simple to use and the shops that I had seen on the platform were so beautiful!

Tell us about your most popular item in your shop

My most popular items are my studio boxes, the 'Sup Ladies' woven throw blankets, and the 'Sup Ladies' art print.

The studio boxes each contain 20 half yard cuts of my fabric over the past 10 years. I only sell the boxes every couple of months as it takes a looong time to cut all of the fabric, but they usually sell out within minutes when I offer them.

The 'Sup Ladies' throws were super special because it was the first time I had an item manufactured on my own for my shop. I posted that print design on my Instagram and the response was really very positive, so I thought I would use that illustration as my first throw. It was a limited edition run just to dip my toe in and see if it was something I wanted to do again. It was a huge success and they sold out pretty quickly as well! I'm so happy with how that went, so I will definitely offer some new designs soon.

The art prints of the 'Sup Ladies' illustration are also a huge favorite in my shop. I love to draw women, which I think stems from my fashion design roots. They're very prominent in my art and I love to feature them in bold, graphic styles which seem to resonate with people.

RCH_Natural_Throw - Rashida Coleman-Hale.jpg

And what's your favorite item in your shop?

My favorite item in my shop is my limited edition throws. I have a few other designs in the works that will be available soon, so stay tuned!

Why did you choose your current theme for your shop?

I chose the Luna theme because it's a super clean, simple design, that lets my art do the talking.

Check out the Luna theme for your own Big Cartel shop.

Which Big Cartel feature could you not live without?

Bulk Edit ftw!

What does a regular workday look like for you?

My workday varies daily. It's a mishmash of time spent on Zoom meetings with clients, working on illustration projects, shipping orders, and answering emails. By far my most favorite part of my day is when I work on new art, whether it's for upcoming fabric collections, licensing gigs, or new art prints for my shop. I secretly wish I could spend the day just drawing. Haha!

Who or what inspires you?

As I mentioned before, I love to draw women. Strong women. I'm inspired by the women in my life... friends, family, my daughters. I love to experiment with color and tend to create a lot of mood boards before I start a new project.

RCH_HeyLadies_Framed - Rashida Coleman-Hale.jpg

What's a moment in your career, or life in general, that you're proud of?

I'm proud that I've found my calling. There was a time in my life when I really wasn't sure what I wanted to do because I was convinced that it wouldn't be possible to make a real living as an artist. I sort of floated around in different jobs that were not in the creative field for several years. I worked in HR for a while and was even an Admin Assistant! I was finally able to find my footing and now I do what I love everyday. You really never know where this life will take you! The universe can take you down some paths that you are unsure of, but once you learn to trust the journey, you'll end up right where you're supposed to be.

What was the most unexpected challenge you have encountered while running your own business? How did you overcome that challenge?

Oy. My nemesis... imposter's syndrome. It's something that I still struggle with and being on social media certainly doesn't help. Sadly, it seems like a necessary evil for a small business these days. Over the years I've learned to tune out a lot of that noise and remind myself that I do belong here and that there is a space for me and my work.

Any advice for someone thinking about opening up their own shop?

Lose the fear and just go for it! There is so much trial and error in running a shop and you're not always going to get it right, and that's okay!

What would you be doing if you weren't doing this?

I think I'd be a DJ or a Voice Over actor, at least that's what I tell myself. ^_~

Twizzlers or Red Vines?

Team Twizzlers! Yep, I'm from the East Coast. lol

Give us three recommendations... for anything!

Where can people find you online?

My shop, my website, and I'm most active on Instagram @iamrashidacolemanhale.

15 February 2022

Words by:Big Cartel

  • Share