D*A*N*C*I*N*G! I love it. Don’t get me wrong – I don’t actually know anything about it, but I love to get so lost in the music that I just have to move with it. It makes me happy to see other people just doing their thing on the dance floor too, paying no heed to what anyone else may think of their moves. For me, dancing is about expression and enjoyment and there is no right or wrong way to do it.
What or who inspires you in life and in work?
I’m a big reader so there are a lot of authors…and music is an essential part of every day so there are so many to choose from. I’m not sure I can choose just one musician; music brings a different light to any mood so it really depends on how I wake up that day! Paul Simon is a constant, though, as are The Smiths, Joy Division, Joni Mitchell, The Knife, Coco Rosie.
I have a longstanding fascination with Pop art by Andy Warhol & Roy Lichtenstein and the geometric abstract art of Mondrian, Malevich, Bolotowsky & van Doesburg, all of which have influenced and inspired my work.
Honestly, though my greatest and most enduring inspirations have always been my friends and family, the people around me.They’re pretty flaming awesome.
What do you love most about your job?
I love the freedom to be creative every day. I work my own hours around my little girl’s school times which works well because, for me, the most flowing, creative part of the day is between 8 pm and midnight.
What makes your business unique?
The main focus of a design is to make it special for each individual couple, and by ‘special’ I mean something that is really reflective of them and what is important to them, rather than the formal script that has dominated wedding stationery until recent years. It might be a shared love of walking, or bike riding, a special place, or some sort of private joke between them. It might be involving their children…or a pet! Even if it’s just a small, subtle nod to that special thing…I do think that makes all the difference and I’ll always give everything I’ve got to get it right for my couples. I also strive to make the whole process as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.
What are your tools of the trade?
My Mac! It’s true what they say…’once you go, Mac, you never go back’. Probably because it would take so long to get used to a different interface. All of my work is digital so I use several Adobe programs every day, mainly Illustrator. I get through a lot of tea too…it’s preferable to gin I think. At least for the customer.
What makes the perfect wedding day?
It’s different for everyone. But a constant would be the couple feeling relaxed and at ease to be themselves, not pressured and happy in the company of those they care about. Most of all, though…outrageously, ridiculously happy and excited about the commitment they have just made to that special person.
Have you ever had any unusual wedding-related requests?
I had a couple who were very keen to include pheasants. That was a lot of fun to do actually (after I’d hastily performed a web search of what on a pheasant actually looks like!). I enjoy bringing a couple’s ideas to life.
What’s your typical working day like?
I’m up around 6:30 every day Monday to Friday to get my daughter ready for school. The rest of the morning is most often spent replying to queries, quoting prices, placing orders from my printer, website jiggery-pokery and contemplating the somewhat mystical world of SEO (getting search engines to recognize the business and offer it to potential clients).
Evenings are when the creative juices start to bubble and I often work late into the night. This can be a bit tricky as that’s when most of the world is relaxing, but evenings and night times have always been my most creative times. My cat Poppy is always with me for the evening sessions, sitting squarely on my lap as close as possible to my laptop.
What’s the biggest misconception about your job?
That I spend my days sticking diamantes on to pieces of card! I’d be rubbish at that and it just isn’t a style that I can personally connect with.
What one piece of advice can you give you a couple planning their wedding?
Own it. Make it your own. If your dream is to wear biker boots and a tutu then go for it. If you long for a super traditional white wedding – do it. The celebration of your union is about you as a couple – your histories, your futures, the quirks and idiosyncrasies that make you so perfect for each other.
What’s your favourite quote?
‘So it goes’ by Kurt Vonnegut. I’m a massive bookworm and he is one of my favourite authors. His novels, as well as being completely bonkers, also strike me as incredibly sage. I actually have that quote tattooed on my upper arm.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
‘Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent’ (Eleanor Roosevelt). I first heard this quote from a kind teacher at school and it has always given me courage (or a kick up the backside when necessary).
What song most closely defines you as a person?
‘Antiphon’ by Hidden Orchestra springs to mind. It’s a really emotive piece that ebbs and flows.
Tea or coffee?
Tea. It’s like a little hug in a mug.
Sweet or savoury?
Sweet. I’m terrible for sugar. Syrup? Yes, please. Cream? More of that, please. Chocolate? Probably mine anyway.
How can we contact you?