Tell us a little about yourself
I would describe myself as someone who has a love for all things beautiful. I have dabbled in a little bit of quite literally everything including fine art, fashion, merchandising, interior design, graphic design and now illustration. I started young just like everyone else, loving to draw and create, and I have just never that passion go. I was fortunate enough to have parents that supported the idea and let me actually go to college to study fine art and do it while living on the beach and going to the best school ever, Flagler College. Looking back on it, it would have been much more practical to be a doctor or something. I remember the distinct moment when I realized, what am I going to do with a fine art degree? This day happened to correspond somewhere around graduation day. I probably should have been thinking about it a little bit sooner. I always had a love for fashion and design so I finally decided to pursue that by going back home to Kentucky to get my masters degree in fashion and merchandising (Kentucky and fashion? An obvious combination, right?). Every young ‘fashionista’ dreams of becoming Anna Wintour and taking over the world one Chanel handbag at a time. During the summer of grad school, I decided to start pursuing my global fashion domination by taking an internship at Lucky Magazine in NYC. This summer was groundbreaking for me. New York was not at all what I imagined it to be including the fashion industry itself; realizing that fashion editors weren’t really fashion superheros that created and predicted fashion trends. I decided to leave NYC as soon as I had my ‘Aha!’ moment that what I wanted out of life was to look out over my luscious garden while sitting on the front porch swing, drinking sweet tea and having a family. I can attest the saying is true; you can take the girl out of the south but you can’t take the south out of the girl. Now I am right back to where it all started, with my love of drawing and fine art. I do have a garden, a family but I’m still working on the porch swing.
When & how did you get started with your business?
I have been talking about starting the concept of ‘Jelly Press’ for well over a year before I actually did it. I do not come from an entrepreneur background what so over so the concept of starting my own business was overwhelming, to say the least. I had been teaching college courses on fashion design & illustration for five years when the news broke that the school was going to be closing. This is when I finally took the leap of faith to start Jelly Press. A close friend who works for Everglades offered the use of their booth space at a craft beer and art festival in New Smyrna Beach back in April of this year, which would literally force me to get my act together in 5 days. I had already finished my first series of illustrations but had not printed anything including product, business cards, packaging, signage – you get the drift – absolutely nothing and just five days to do it! After my initial panic wore off, I said hell yes and the rest is history!
In a few words, describe your style:
Jelly Press’ style is quirky and contemporary. My aim is to create illustrations that embody the zeitgeist of our generation.
What inspires you?
Travel. To see the world is such an enriching experience; to see and experience other cultures and especially the art. Just this year my husband and I traveled to Scotland, which quickly became one of my favorite places I have ever been. To the Scotch, craftsmanship is such a part of the culture and heritage – be it textiles, illustration, or of course scotch whiskey, something that I am excited to see continually grow in popularity and interest to consumers here in the states.
What do you love most about what you do?
Do I have to pick one thing? Because that would be impossible! I love being my own boss, seeing my art out in the public, meeting Jelly Press customers, working to make clients’ visions come to life and of course making their wedding just that much more special and unique.
What’s your favorite style/colors/theme to work with?
Right now I am really enjoying painting buildings and architecture. I love it when a couple comes to me and they have amazing venues for their wedding. Makes my job that much easier!
Describe the process couples go through when they book with you:
Email or give me a ring so we can set up a meeting. I like to meet face to face with my clients to hash out ideas and get to know them on a personal level to best understand their style and personality.
What advice would you give to your future couples?
Having custom invitations that reflect your wedding and personality is something you can cherish forever. All of my couples also receive all the original watercolor illustrations that I paint for their invitation in hopes that they can have something beautiful and special in their home to remember this big moment in their lives together.
When I first even thought of becoming an entrepreneur and doing freelance work, I had this really random idea come to me for a popular national brand that every woman (and I’m sure a guilty pleasure for most men!) knows and loves (major hint: you’ll find this beloved couple on HGTV). As soon as I came up with my idea, I got to work. I sent my proposal and design to every email and social media account that I could find. A couple weeks later I received a response from the buying team and after a couple of edits, my design was purchased and I’m just waiting for it to be published! For every entrepreneur I offer this advice; take the risk, follow your instincts and you never know what will happen!
Contact info for couples to reach you?