find my heart story: feel the magic of the aesthetic way

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Farmette Press, papermaker and letterpress

When I first started working with Emma, I was in need of a storyteller.

I had spent so much time, money, thought and heart developing my products, and yet when I tried to communicate the beautiful story of what I had made, it seemed so much less compelling and powerful than I knew it to be.

I felt frustrated that I was unable to portray my business for what it was, and I knew that I needed to be able to tell my story well if my business was going to thrive.

Emma's gift and training in the art of the story was apparent from the start. 

She worked to gently and patiently tease out first my own personal journey and then used that to define and contextualize the story of my business from all of the jumbled pieces had been looking at for so long. 

She helped me to see that some of the areas I had been focusing on were actually not where I felt the most confidence or enjoyment. Taking off the pressure of trying to be something that didn't quite fit allowed me to be able to identify what elements of my business made me feel the most confident.

I realized that those were my "genius" areas where I could offer real value and service to my market. 

After working with Emma, our launch went so well that the number of orders and requests we had went beyond our capacity to fill them all in the time we had planned. 

Emma's immense gift as a storyteller helped me to find my business' story, to own it, and then finally to communicate it. 

I cannot overstate how her services changed not only my business, but also my perspective on how much my business is an extension of my life and person. 

I would not be the same without her! I cannot recommend her highly enough.

The story in Loren’s words…

Carli Anna, Designer, Brand Strategist

"I was about 4 months into the startup of my business and my designs were all over the place, I had no real direction to my brand other than if it looked pretty and it pleased the client than I was okay with it. I was so sick of being price shopped, I felt like the only reason people wanted to hire me was because I was a newbie and would offer cheap prices. I knew people were doing almost exactly what I was doing but making so much more money, and getting these amazing clients with fabulous ideas. I wanted to reach these dream clients sooo badly but the climb seemed impossible. That's when I hired Emma! 

I wanted to believe that whatever Emma had to teach me, I could obviously learn on my own. That I would invest and think ya duh I learned that in my 8432 million workshops that I've already invested. But I was sooooo wrong. 

Even after the first session my mind was blown with all these ideas and concepts to help MY business grow.

The concepts in the workshops I learned in the workshops made sense, but Emma was there to help me apply those to MY personal business, to help me figure why some concepts help and others don't.

Emma is not only such a gifted stylist and designer but she is an amazing teacher. She helped me understand concepts that the million of workshops that I bought couldn't, and then apply them into my own business. 

Her concepts are so adaptable and versatile. She's so ingeniously creative with her business concepts and ideas! 

I'm convinced there is nobody's business that she can't help. 
Yes yes yes, a million times yes, I would recommend Emma. I do all the time! Working with Emma has been the single best thing I have done for my business. I do not consider Emma an expense, but a huge investment.

Every creative out there trying to figure out where they belong in this industry... needs Emma and asap! Not even a day after my re-branding shoot I received so many inquiries that I had been dreaming about for months. I would have never been able to do it without Emma! I've had a lot of questions about what Emma has done for my business, she has helped me find my vision for my business, then portray that vision to ideal clients, reach my goals.
 
She's helped turn my expensive hobby into a profitable business.

The story in carli’s own words…

"She worked to gently and patiently tease out first my own personal journey and then used that to define and contextualize the story of my business from all of the jumbled pieces I had been looking at for so long."
-Loren Smith

Pressed Paper, papermaker

When Sharon first reached out to me, I have to admit I was a little skeptical. She told me she loved calligraphy and invitations and design and pretty things, and when I scrolled through her feed…well, I wondered if we were the right fit. The way she photographed what she created seemed,...crafty, as opposed to more on the artistic side.

Really different from what I would usually try to help people with!
But she was SO excited to work together that of course I jumped on a call with her, and became fast friends.

We were cracking up the whole time and I knew we’d be able to create something incredible together.

As we dove into her business, Sharon told me about how she quit her nursing career because she just didn’t feel like the environment was right anymore. She got into nursing to take care of patients…and she didn’t like how the focus was shifting away from that. Plus, she could feel that all of the overtime hours and expectations put on her were cutting into the time she wanted to be with her kids.

I felt my eyes well up with tears when she told me about a time where she had let her daughter down because she said she’d pick her up but she forgot because she was so busy at work and her daughter had been waiting for hours.

After that story, I knew that one of my biggest priorities for her right away was just time. I knew how much time I had put into building my own shop with handmade products and I kept thinking about how I would feel if my mom was putting in those kind of hours to building a business instead of spending time with her kids and grandkids.

“No,” I said immediately in my mind. “That’s not the way Sharon’s going to spend her retirement.”

Because I know that paper-making is seriously a LOT of labor. It’s not necessarily difficult…although it is precise, it’s just…time. So I knew that if Sharon was going to be successful, we needed to put systems in place that would allow her to grow quickly and support her. 

I encouraged her to seek out support and help right away. She made it happen.

We talked strategy to make sure that whatever she spent her time on was moving the needle forward.

But at the heart of it all was the storytelling for her brand.
And I knew what that needed to be. But I heard Sharon on the other side of the phone, “no one wants to see or hear me! I’m an old grandma. No one wants that.”

And then me, “but Sharon. Do you know how many people need the heart and the love that you give? How many people scroll through their Instagram and feel like they’re not enough? They need someone like you. Someone who is generous, kind, and honest. Instagram needs more people like you.” 

And so she started showing up more. And she started fine-tuning her products and services. Everyone was falling in love with her paper. So soft, pillowy, and wonderful. She got her products into the right hands. 

And we told her warm-hearted beautiful story in images.

By the end of working together, Sharon had 10x her revenue. Then on the phone the other day, she told me she had had her first five-figure month.

The story in Emma's words…

Mishku Studio, designer and visual strategist

It wasn’t until after we were done working together that Michelle texted me and told me that her dream had always been to be a graphic designer the way she is now…but she didn’t feel like she was good enough. Yet, she launched without having worked with a single branding client, without having a single person on her list, and started with only 150 followers on Instagram. She made over 5k in said launch, booking 7 clients and selling out all of her spots for months.

Michelle didn’t originally reach out to me wanting to do graphic design. She wanted to be a wedding invitation designer, and I loved why. She had gone to school for textile design and she wasn’t excited about the prospect of designing clothes for large box stores that would fill up landfills a few months later. She liked the idea of designing something that would be held onto, treasured, for decades and maybe even generations.

So we pulled together images for her aesthetic, drawing on her family’s land in Ireland and her love for Japanese minimalism. This idea of wild restraint. We were preparing for her new line of invitations. I saw them in person and fell in love. Here was a truly gifted designer, I told myself. I knew she wouldn’t need my help in creating beautiful design, although sometimes I do offer feedback to clients. All she needed was a great marketing plan.
And then we got on the phone one week and Michelle said, “Emma. We need money. Quickly. How can we do that?”

And I knew immediately that it takes time to build up a wedding brand unless you just happen to have a ton of people in your network already getting married. So I suggested that she launch her branding services first. I told her I knew how we could sell that. It wouldn’t be a hard sell. Businesses who needed branding were already in her network. Or would be soon. I told her we could craft an offer that people couldn’t resist. And she could work her way up from there.
 
And so we created that launch plan.

Every week Michelle was nervous about how it would go, if it would work. 

I’m always curious to see how launches go too. But I’m never surprised that they work. It’s just like telling a story.

And Michelle worked her tail off to make it amazing.
After the last day of her launch, I texted her to ask how it went.

She had booked over five thousand dollars in client work. 

Just a few months before, she’d had no network, no previous client work, no email list, and about a hundred and fifty people following her on Instagram. Just her design skills. But more than that, she is now doing work she loves. She gets to stay home in her fluffy bathrobe and cat named Sushi and be her lovely introverted self and create things she loves. 
Oh, and she quit her day job right after this launch.

The story according to Emma…