Have you ever had someone really believe in you? I don’t mean telling you did a good job or occasionally offering their help to get through a particular project. I mean honestly & truly believe in you—heart & soul? I have incredible support system of family, friends & followers, but today I want to share about three friends that have truly believed—& continue to believe—in me & my work in a way that has changed who I am, the way I work & how I view myself.
I met Michelle in high school. We had a few classes together & our interests & enthusiasm destined us to be friends. We loved the same books & scifi tv series & we shared the same skeptical opinion of our young conspiracy theorist history teacher. We quickly we became best friends.
A couple of years later, we were seniors & both working on our high school newspaper. I think Michelle was always a writer at heart, but we both held positions as designers, completing a number of layouts for each monthly issue.
Our staff included an amazing team of writers, photographers, designers & editors & it was hard to not feel overshadowed in the light of such bright stars. Every day Michelle was there to cheer me on & motivate me to keep working hard. Michelle was the first person that made me believe that I could really be a designer & to this day she she motivates me with her wonder & support of my work.
Mary is a whirlwind of summer breeze—warm, comforting, refreshing & just a bit magical. Your could almost say I met Mary out of happenstance through college theater & mutual friends. We went to the same small university in Virginia, but we had completely different majors & never had a general education or elective class together. Nevertheless, we found each other.
Mary grew up in a welcoming, loving, faith-filled family & it radiates in all she does as she genuinely welcomes in everyone around her with genuine interest & friendship. Mary is also the most whimsical person I have ever met & I couldn’t help but be drawn in.
As our friendship grew, we shared many varied & fantastic conversations over meals, work, get togethers & rehearsals. Our conversations were refreshing & inspiring (one conversation even inspiring my beloved cupcakes). When I started my business, I took many of our whimsical ideas & brought them to life through my work.
Mary couldn’t have been more excited & often sends warm praise & love when I release new work. She has also been a regular patron & shares the stories of where my pieces go which motivate me to continue creating & developing my work to bring joy everyone I can.
Some friendships come slowly, but finding a friend in LeEllen came like lightning in an instant. I first saw her hand lettered signs from across the room at local holiday market where I was vending & I instantly knew three things: 1. Her signs were unique & amazing; 2. She was going to make my day of selling difficult with her beautiful signs; 3. I had to meet her.
As the day went on, I worked hard selling my work & quietly watched as LeEllen sold & crafted new, amazing signs right on the spot. She was bubbly & worked intuitively & I wanted to pick her brain. After the market closed & we started to pack our wares, I got my chance. I immediately walked over to introduce myself & she responded as though we were already friends. I was simply amazed!
We chatted about our backgrounds, hand lettering, our mutual love of each other’s work & a bit about our lives & process. She introduced me to the Rising Tide Society & I introduced her to laser cutting.
Just like that we were friends. We eventually parted way to travel home, but that wasn’t the end. We took to Instagram & have become each other’s biggest cheerleaders—liking, commenting on & supporting each others work wholeheartedly. We still talk regularly & having such a champion in my corner has completely changed how I view my business, competition & myself.