Tanija Carter, Owner of The Lab Creative House

Website building, flyer designs and social media templates are just a few of the services that The Lab Creative House, owned by Tanija Carter, has to offer.

Tanija Carter is a senior at Maryville University, studying Communications. She is also an entrepreneur who made a business to assist people with their branding and marketing.

The Lab Creative House was officially created in 2021 under its current name, but Carter had been working on this business since 2018. It started when she designed football edits for her friend and then she began creating graphics for her clothing brand.

After receiving a lot of love for her graphics and getting inquiries about working with other brands, she decided to create a brand focused on something she enjoyed doing. This developed into her current business.

The Lab Creative House has expanded since its official launch in 2021 and Carter has grown as a businessowner at the same time.

“When I first started my life as an entrepreneur, I was so scared to try new things. I would always doubt myself or ask approval before creating something and now I’m more confident in my work,” Carter said.

Another part of her growth was learning to set boundaries with people and respectfully let them know if something is not going to work. This has made it easier for Carter to use her expertise to deliver quality services that she and her clients are proud of. She finds it rewarding to see her designs come to life and receive positive responses on clients’ pages.

A banner designed by Tanija Carter for Kaldi’s Coffee. (Photo courtesy of Tanija Carter)

In addition to her designs, Carter offers a variety of services for businesses and individuals.

“Two of my favorite services that I offer are monthly graphic designs for brands who don’t like the content portion of running their business and want to put their focus somewhere else, and my free services for those who are in need of obituaries or anything created for a loved one that has passed away,” Carter said.

She also started offering a new service for young entrepreneurs who don’t have the funds to start their brand. She makes them a website, branded content and business cards for free.

Carter’s creativity means design ideas often come to mind, and she is also inspired by fellow women in graphic design. Their work sparks inspiration and their success motivates her. She aspires to be like them in the future and would love to travel and connect with other designers.

Her goal is to work regularly and gain more clients, both small and big businesses. Because of the nature of freelance work, gaining clientele has been a challenge. She doesn’t work for an agency, and it is hard to find businesses that don’t already have a graphic designer or that want to invest in branding. Still, Carter has done a good job of satisfying and keeping clients.

One of these clients is her friend Keaira Robinson, an entrepreneur who owns The Writing Korner and Touched by Ke. She specializes in writing and educational coaching and massage therapy.

Robinson has worked with Carter for graphic designs, hoodies, custom graduation apparel and website building. Creating a professional website especially helped elevate her brand and she continues working with Carter for her business.

Motionmuse.co, Keaira Robinson’s website that Tanija Carter helped to create. (Screenshot courtesy of Faith Boyd)

Robinson said that her favorite thing about working with Carter is, “Her professionalism and her ability to deliver everything I ask.”

Carter’s career as a graphic designer started because she enjoyed making designs for herself and her friends. With The Lab Creative House, she gets to do what she loves on a larger scale, making designs come to life and completing professional work for her clients.

For anybody thinking about starting their own business, Carter’s advice is to go for it and not be afraid.

“The area you are planning on going into may have a lot of other businesses, but you have to stand out. Their target audience is not yours, their marketing strategy is not yours, their budget is not yours, their mission is not yours, and their drive is not yours.”

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