Tina Dean Allen is the owner/designer at Tina Dean Designs. She leaped into entrepreneurship in the summer of 2009 after being laid off from her job as an executive assistant.
Tina Dean Designs specializes in upcycling/repurposing plastic grocery bags and vhs tape into beautiful, useful accessories that are eco-friendly, easily cared for and fashionably fabulous.
According to Allen, balancing business with family is easier since she is at home. “Because I work from home, I’m able to balance family and work fairly easily. I schedule my time during the day while the kids are in school to accomplish as much as possible while they are not home. Having a smart phone has been essential to keep up with social networking in the evening and when I’m running around doing errands,” she said.
Her advice to other mom entrepreneurs is be to work hard, use social networking avenues correctly, and to keep their ears open for any and all advice. “You have to have thick skin when you go into business, because not everyone will love or agree with what you are doing,” she added.
Allen has made marketing a priority. She has been represented at the GBK Primetime Emmy Gift Lounge in Hollywood by The Artisan Group. She had product at the recent GBK Academy Awards Gift Lounge. “I’ve made valuable contacts with members of the press, site owners and bloggers which have resulted in getting the word out about what I do,” she said. Tina Dean Designs has also been a Fox Small Business – Business of the Day, been featured on Fredericksburg.com, GoGreenAmericaTV.com, and numerous blogs and online magazines. “It takes work, but is well worth the effort,” she concluded.