Biz Beat

Inside Hollis Design Co.

Photo Credit: Jeremy Fleming Photography

Black. White. Swoosh. Athleticism. Performance. Perseverance.

If Nike is coming to mind, that’s the power of branding and design. Why do brands matter, and how do they come to be? We asked Mallory Hollis, award-winning freelance designer and owner of Hollis Design Co.

The Simpsonville resident shared her journey into graphic design and how she’s able to achieve the best of two worlds while balancing her two daughters, two dogs, and two largest clients: Upstate SC Alliance and TealHaus. 

Anderson Magazine, Anderson to the Atlantic (AMAA) — Tell us about yourself. 

Hollis Design Co. (HDC) — I discovered my love for design at an early age with a tube of lipstick and the walls of my grandmother’s house. They say when you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. Design has truly never felt like work to me. After graduating from Gardner-Webb University and going on to complete my postgraduate education at Clemson University, I moved back to my hometown of Greenville, SC. Throughout my career, I have worked in a variety of industries, including advertising, publishing, and economic development. Being able to see something start as a simple idea on paper and then go through the design process before ultimately landing at the final product is a feeling like no other. Through over fifteen years of experience, that feeling has yet to dull. When I’m not working, you can find me cooking, crafting, traveling, or spending time with my husband and two girls. I’m a sucker for a good Hallmark movie, Bath & Body Works candles, anything sweet, and, of course, some killer graphic design.

AMAA — What drew you into working in the design field?

HDC — I was always a creative at heart, but that didn’t feel practical. I thought I needed to pick a reliable field that would guarantee me a job. I originally declared pre-medicine, but after two semesters of organic chemistry I made the decision to switch my major to Graphic Design. When I finally landed in graphic design, I was surprised by how many people said things to me like “it’s about time” and “oh, that makes so much sense!” 

AMAA — How did Hollis Design Co. come about?

HDC — When I found out I was pregnant with our second daughter, we added up the cost of two children in daycare full time — and it was astronomical. I loved my job at the time, but ultimately made the difficult decision to step back and stay at home with our girls. What started as me leaving my job turned into me being hired back to that very same company as a contractor. One thing led to another and before I knew it, I had built up quite the client roster. I found myself truly living the best of both worlds — I was able to keep doing what I loved, but also be present for my girls.  

AMAA — What is your favorite thing about what you do?

HDC — I love having a creative outlet. Every day brings a different and unique challenge, so there’s never a dull moment. I enjoy getting to work with a variety of companies and industries. Watching designs come to life is something that never gets old — especially creating a brand and getting to see it play out across all touch points. 

AMAA — Can you explain what branding is and why it’s so important?

HDC — First impressions matter and branding is no exception. It’s more than just aesthetics. It tells your customers and clients what to expect from you. It’s a way of distinguishing yourself from the competition and clarifying what it is that you offer that makes you the better choice. Your brand is a representation of who you are as a business and how you want to be perceived. Branding is critical to a business because of the overall impact it makes on your company. It can change how people perceive your brand, it can drive new business, and increase brand value — it can also do the opposite if done wrongly or not at all.

AMAA — Why is it important to hire a professional to help you rather than just doing it yourself? 

I think it’s so easy to get stuck in your own bubble — someone from the outside brings new ideas and fresh perspectives. I also think you hit the nail on the head — clients should be able to focus on what they do best, and hiring a professional to handle everything else allows them to do just that. I also think there’s something to be said for the experience, network, connections, tools, software, etc. that a professional has at their disposal. 

When it comes to a freelancer like me, versus an agency, I have such little overhead that I can afford to have more reasonable pricing. Plus, there’s less red tape and people to go through. Clients work with me and only me, so the process is much more efficient and personable. 

AMAA — What things can Hollis Design Co. do for their clients?

We’re a full-service creative agency — we do it all from logos to websites. 

Logo Design
Whether you have a concept in mind or need to start from scratch, we provide unique & creative logo solutions.

Branding & Identity
We create designs incorporating typography, colors, brand identity and more to establish brand recognition for your business.

Graphic Design
We offer a variety of high-quality, professional creative services. From logos, to branding & identity, to brochures, banners & signage — we’re a one-stop-shop for all your design needs.

Website Design
We build professional WordPress websites, decked out with all the bells and whistles — we’re talking SEO and responsive design for days. Everything you need to ensure your site rises to the top and is fully functioning across all devices.

Let us help you turn things up a notch and take your business to the next level.
We’ll dish out the creative solutions that will ensure your brand cuts through the noise — and rises to the top.

To learn more about Hollis Design Co., visit our website —