Looking back at 2009 – No Grey Creative turns 10


2017 marks 10 years for No Grey Creative. As part of the celebration I’ll be bringing you a series of blog posts with the purpose of sharing my unique business story and also with the hope that you can relate to, learn from and have a laugh at (along with me) my experiences.
Here’s a look back at 2009…

New marketing campaign: No Grey was really up and going by now and I needed to start implementing my own marketing campaigns to keep chugging along. One of my favourites to this day is the one below. My (now) husband and buddy Kelly generously helped me out as models for this, and of course my trusty photographer friend Mackenzie made it all come to life. She even sourced the hospital equipment for the shoot! That is a REAL fluids bag and hook straight from the Royal Melbourne.

trust the wrong person


I even rolled out the concept to V.2 of the No Grey website which was launched at the start of 2009. The idea was that Graphic Design pumps life into your business, the main artery. I LOVED THIS WEBSITE – complete with the No Grey logo as the beating heart at the centre the veins depicted each folio category. I must say it has been one of the most creative websites if ever done, conceptually wise. It had to be taken down and re-done in 2010 as Flash technology was on the way out and was no longer viewable in some browsers (plus tablets and smart phones were well under way and didn’t support it), which was a shame.

website from 2009

I needed to hire someone: After completing the web design and development course in 2008, I immediately started offering websites. This proved to be very popular, so much so that in 2009 I needed to engage the services of a developer. This was really exciting to be able to collaborate with someone on a job, as prior to this I really was on my own.

A stand out new client of 2009: I received a call one day from a bubbly family lawyer named Jane, who was only just up the road from me in my Bay Street office. She’d found my website on google (lucky I took that web course!) and liked the fact I was just up the road. The enquiry for a rebrand of their current logo. She wanted to meet right away and I believe I went up there for the meeting that afternoon. They (CE Family Lawyers) engaged me as their Graphic Designer pretty much right away and the rest is history. I am so very proud and humbled to say that Jane is still a client today, 9 years later. She even came to my wedding! I have designed so much collateral for them over the years and here is a very small sample:

content-image-ce-family-lawyers-office content-image-ce-family-lawyers-folder-flyer content-image-ce-family-lawyers-stationery

Office situation: I had to get out of my corporate office! It was not a good fit for me plus the hidden fees and silly rules were all a bit too much. I had met a fantastic guy by the name of Jim Cunningham who had a small advertising agency across the road from the corporate office I was in. He offered me some desk space in what was then the old Brighton Squash Courts (now developed into apartments). I quickly took him up on his offer and in October 2009 I moved across the road to my new digs.

Something fun: I had the idea to make up welcome packs for Real Estate agents to leave for their new tenants (not just new owners). I already had Denver Real Estate as a client and proposed the idea to them. Anyway, they loved it and I used to produce around 10 for them on a monthly basis. 

tenants package

real estate gift idea 

New name (kind of): Up until this point I had been known as No Grey Design, but I found that the word ‘design’ was confusing people and has been described as a bit generic. After much brainstorming and market testing I decided to re-name to No Grey Creative. A small change but in hindsight I think for the better.

Biggest lesson of 2009: I had seriously over committed financially by signing a 12 month lease on the corporate office. I got swept up in the ideology of that place and perhaps didn’t think about all the other expenses that came along with it. I had really only been out on my own for 1 year when I took up residency and looking back I don’t think I had the experience to make it work – plus I was still very young and naive to the business world. In the future I learned to think things through more carefully despite being excited by the prospect.

Networking: This year I really upped the networking! After seeing the success I was having with BNI I joined some other networking groups such as Bayside Business Network, W2W at Brown Cow in Hampton, changed to a BNI Brighton Group from my original one in Mordialloc, Canard Club in South Melbourne and MBA (Melbourne Business Awards), Kingston Business Network to name a few. 

Some design work from 2009:

Website V.1 for Sports Conscious in Brighton

sports concious

A4 Brochure for Premium People

premium people

Advertising for Denver Real Estate

denver ad 2 denver ad

I hope you’ve enjoyed sharing my experiences from 2009, click below to find out what happens next in 2010…