“I’ve yet to meet a business that doesn’t have a great story to tell…”
Next up in the Creative Business series is Lidia Rumley of The Brand Storyteller. In her own words, Lidia works with ‘creative and entrepreneurial businesses to define and articulate their brand stories’. Messaging is such an important part of building a meaningful and sustainable brand. It’s what holds everything together and connects the dots between you, your brand, and your audience.
I first met Lidia last year, through a small local group for female, creative entrepreneurs – set up by myself and Elisabeth Booth (aka The Giftsmith). We’ve only met as a group twice (I’m looking forward to catching up again once we’re allowed!), but it was clear to see Lidia’s passion for working with clients and really getting underneath, behind, and to the core of their stories.
Without further ado, let’s delve in and discover a glimpse into Lidia’s own story…
“There was something about taking seemingly ordinary ingredients and turning them into something amazing that gave me hope.”
Our next Creative Business feature is one of the sweetest people I’ve interacted with online (we’ve yet to meet in person, but I’ve no doubt she’ll be just as lovely in ‘real life’), Fen Bolodeoku of MonAnnie. It seems only appropriate that such a sweet and beautiful woman should work in one of the most delicious industries: wedding cakes and patisserie.
Fen is an incredible wedding cake designer and patisserie maker, based in Berkshire, and we first connected a few years ago when I was also making wedding cakes. Since then, though I have changed direction (following my joy and starting this business), Fen has gone from strength to strength in the wedding cake world – designing many bespoke and elegant creations. It’s been such a pleasure to witness and I can’t wait to see where the future takes Fen and MonAnnie. Let’s get to know more about the lovely lady behind the Creative Business…
If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me mention the idea of making a hair-tie/scarf/thing the other day. Can someone please tell me what they’re actually called?! Well, yesterday, I decided to stop thinking about whether it would work or not, and just go for it.
“Something I often forget to do but have learnt is really important, is simply picking up my pen and just playing with it…”
Next up in the Creative Business series we have modern and wedding calligrapher, Emily Kelly of Penned by Em. I can’t actually remember how I came across Emily’s talent, but I do remember being instantly transfixed by her creations (especially when she shows videos of calligraphy up close!). As an artist, writer, and designer, I love gorgeous words… but, somewhat ironically, my handwriting is awful. Ask me to paint, draw, or digitally create a beautiful word and I’m on it; ask me to write it in pen, by hand, and I panic. It’s why I have the greatest respect for calligraphers, especially creative ones like Emily, and have modern calligraphy high up on the list of skills I would love to learn. Without further ado, let’s find out more about the inspiring woman behind the creative business…
“My why is that this is where I can give the most to others, while being most true to myself.”
The world feels unsettling and confusing right now and so many people are finding things tough. This includes a lot of small businesses and the self-employed, across so many industries. I in no way want to gloss over the difficulties, but I also think it’s important to continue celebrating the wonderful creative businesses we have in the UK and, more importantly, the inspiring women behind them. With that in mind, the next feature in the Creative Business series is UK and destination wedding planner, Valentina Ring, of The Stars Inside. Creativity, light, and inspiration (three of my favourite things), shine out from Valentina in everything she does. I can’t wait to get to know her further…
If you saw my Instagram stories the other day, you may well have seen a little glimpse of these yummy bakes (well, two of them anyway). You answered, unanimously, you wanted the recipes so – your wish is my command! Today’s creative project isn’t just two recipes, however, it’s actually three. The original “Healthy” Oat Squares, “Healthy” Chocolate Oat Squares, and “Healthy” Chocolate Brownies. I’ll explain all the inverted commas in a bit.
The reason? Well, though I have made the original “healthy” oat squares/bars many times before, this was the first time I had tried the recipe in chocolate and I’m not certain if I like it or not. I mean, I’m still eating them, but I don’t find myself reaching for more than one chocolate oat square at a time (the mark of something really delicious!). I like the flavour but, to me, the texture is odd with the chocolate taste. It doesn’t work together somehow. My mum, on the other hand, loves them – which is why I’m still sharing the recipe, in case it sounds like the sort of thing you’d enjoy. That little spark of promising flavour got me thinking, though. What if I could find the right texture to go with it? That’s when I came up with the third recipe, for “healthy” chocolate brownies… and oooh it’s good!
Urgh, ‘pricing’ – a word that sends a shudder down many creatives’ spines. It’s hard enough making sure you’re covering all your costs, let alone knowing and charging your worth! Now, before we get into this topic, I just want to say, I’m not about to share THE answers. I don’t have any magical formula and I’m in no way a ‘pricing for creatives’ or marketing specialist. It is, however, a topic at the forefront of my mind right now, and I think talking about it amongst friends and like-minded creative women can only be a good thing in helping us feel more comfortable with charging our worth.
“The city is such a melting pot of culture & cool, filled with ideas and inspiration.”
Next up in the Creative Business series we have international wedding and personal branding photographer, Anneli Marinovich. I first came across Anneli’s photography through a couple of mutual friends and acquaintances on social media. I’m a sucker for gorgeous, light-filled, and natural photography with a creative and aspirational touch… so I immediately fell in love with Anneli’s style! Creating gorgeous images as a London based photographer, focusing on destination and luxury weddings as well as personal branding photography, you’ll be sure to find inspiration within her work. I’m excited to find out more about the woman behind the business. Let’s get started…
Just a simple creative project blog post from me today, for two reasons. One, it’s not a how-to – it’s a ‘show and tell’ (do you remember those in primary school?), in the hope it inspires you to be creative yourself. Two, I’m purposefully taking it easy this week and not doing too much work. I’ve had some amazing projects lately, but that’s meant some long hours and extended working weeks – and I know I need to take some time out. When you love your work, it can be all too easy to forget to take much needed breaks. I’m listening to my body/mind and consciously balancing work with relaxation this week, and what better way to action that idea than some spring creativity, just for fun.
“…a creative movement with a passion to reduce homelessness.”
It’s time for a new post in my Creative Business series, and this one is something quite special. For a start, it’s the first in 2020 and the beginning of something even bigger for the series (there will be an email edition for those on my mailing list, with added insight from the women featured, and a guest expert each month to give advice on the other side of creative business – like admin stuff and technical bits). It’s also a feature about a person, and business, who is inspiring in more ways than one. Gemma Lane, of On The Map UK, creates brilliant mapwork and travel inspired products…but, more than that, she does everything as part of a creative movement and passion to reduce homelessness. In Gemma’s words ‘because everyone should have the opportunity to be On The Map’.
I actually had a tear in my eye when I first read Gemma’s answers to the feature questions. It’s a real honour to be able to share more about such a wonderful human and business…