Meet Grace Bonney: The Mastermind Behind Design*Sponge & Therapist In-Training

Welcome toSecond Life, a podcast spotlighting successful women who’ve made major career changes—and fearlessly mastered the pivot. Hosted by Hillary Kerr, co-founder and chief content officer at Who What Wear, each episode gives you a direct line to women who are game changers in their fields. Subscribe to Second Life on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or anywhere you get your podcasts to stay tuned.

Grace Bonney is a quadruple threat: She is a digital pioneer, best-selling author, design expert, and founder of Design*Sponge—a platform and digital community dedicated to creatives. Bonney started Design*Sponge back in 2004 as a website that aimed to demystify the design world, making it accessible to all. She also expanded the concept into a best-selling book, Design*Sponge at Home, and a fiercely loyal community around the world. Bonney’s unique perspective and passion for equity, inclusivity, and the importance of supporting all members in the creative community catapulted the company to reach 2 million readers per day for 15 years. After shuttering the site in 2019, Design*Sponge was archived into the Library of Congress—the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and a major accomplishment for the brand. 

Booney is also the founder of Good Company, a print magazine and podcast about creative entrepreneurs, and After the Jump, a podcast about creatives that has reached over 500,000 listeners per episode. Booney also made The New York Times’ best-seller list after publishing her second book, In the Company of Women, which is a loving ode to female entrepreneurs.

Most recently, however, she’s been working on her latest book, Collective Wisdom: Lessons, Inspiration, and Advice From Women Over 50, which will be released tomorrow, October 26, and features unfiltered, eye-opening conversations with more than 100 women from every corner of the country and every walk of life. 

Collective Wisdom: Lessons, Inspiration, and Advice From Women Over 50

As if this wasn’t inspiring enough, through all of the women Bonney has profiled for the project, she became so moved that she decided to make a major career pivot of her own and enroll in graduate school to pursue a career as a therapist. “How do you create a space where somebody else can feel heard and seen and ultimately a little bit less alone? I tried to do that in my podcast interviews. I tried to do that when I interviewed people for books. And now, I’m just going to do that in a different setting,” Bonney tells Hillary of the journey ahead.

Listen to the latest episode of Second Life to hear how Bonney’s previous careers and true collected wisdom have led her to her next chapter as a family and marriage therapist, plus all the lessons she’s learned along the way. 

Next: Meet the Woman Dominating the Book Club Business With Literati: Jessica Ewing

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