13 Sep Supporting the Sisterhood – Kiwi Women in Business: Cat McQuillan
As a full-time burlesque performer, there are a huge number of facets to my job. I simply can’t do everything myself, so I regularly outsource some tasks/aspects to experts.
Sometimes we collaborate to create art together, sometimes I commission custom designs, and sometimes I just have a project I need help with. Wherever possible, I like to support local small businesses, and especially my fellow self-employed women. I’ve decided to write a series of blogs introducing some of the amazing Kiwi women that I work with, who help me keep my brand running. Over the next 10 weeks, I will be profiling each of them individually. I look forward to sharing them with you, darlings. I know burlesque is built on a very DIY attitude, but remember, when you support your friends, it means they can afford to live their dream jobs, too!
Cat McQuillan, print and web designer
I met Cat at the 2014 New Zealand Burlesque Festival. We were seated at the same table for one of the shows, and I was struck by how bubbly and funny she was. We spoke briefly about websites and design, as her company was one of the festival’s sponsors.
I had already been considering a rebrand, so a few months later, I contacted her about overhauling the website I had first created when I changed my performer name. I wanted to create a strong brand which would carry across my site and social media platforms, as well as on and off the stage. I had a very clear vision for what I wanted, but lacked the knowledge to carry it out.
After speaking to Cat about the concept, I realised she was the perfect person to bring my ideas to life. As director and creative lead of Byte Design, Cat is a firm supporter of small local businesses, always seeking excellence in quality from suppliers – the same business ethics that I want in people I contract and employ.
Even once my beautiful new website had launched, Cat continued to work with me, helping to design new business cards, organise merchandise, and post my blogs online (yes, that’s right – without her, this would be a series of essays on my computer, read by no one!), and ensuring everything technology-related was running smoothly.
Cat has been a huge part of helping me to develop and maintain my brand. But she doesn’t just design and create beautiful and functional websites: Byte Design can host them too, and add search engine optimisation (SEO) to all your pages. Byte can even assist in sprucing up your existing content, or supply reader-friendly, brand-focused text from scratch.
Cat can design logos, promo items, business stationery, signage, and so much more. If you need something printed, she can organise it, too, sourcing from local, sustainable, quality suppliers where possible Because Byte Design is run remotely, there are no massive overhead costs. That means someone like me – self-employed and without a huge design budget – can still receive high-end design and service, and my clients (that’s you, darlings!) get all the benefits!
Next week: tune in to read about a local jewellery designer who has just launched her first range, and created a fully-customised birthday present for me.