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Thanks to the beautiful words of Alicia Keys, I am motivated in the new year, what about you? I have been overwhelmed by all of the branding inquiries over the past couple of weeks. It amazes me to witness all of the enthusiasm and drive that fellow business owners have to improve themselves and their brand. New year, new YOU, right?

I encourage you to look at your business and visual branding. Are you PROUD to hand your business card out? Do you LOVE your logo? If not, it is definitely time to think about making changes. If you aren’t proud of yourself and business, how are you going to encourage clients to use your services? Confidence is key and every single time you hand a business card out, you should know that you are presenting the very best version of yourself and your business. Authenticity is SO important as well. I have a client that told me she loved brands such as Tory Burch, Trina Turk and Lilly Pulitzer. Visually, all of the brands are completely different, but what she loved was the relevance of the brand. The impact of the brand. All 3 of these brands are authentic because they didn’t try to be someone else. They stayed true to what made them DIFFERENT than everyone else.

Reminds me of a FAV marketing book, The Purple Cow by Seth Godin. If you haven’t read it, go out and buy it NOW. Short, but powerful read. Find what makes you unique and build on that platform. My good friend, Whitney English, offers a valuable service called Authenticate. She works with you on finding your purpose, your why and then building an authentic brand visually and conceptually. If you are a stationery designer or store owner, I encourage you to attend the next Stationery Academy!

If you are thinking about ‘lighting your fire’ with a new brand, drop me a note [email protected] and let me know if you have any questions!

Wanted to share this beautiful photo my friend and client, Erin Rene Photography took at a recent birthday party we attended. These are the moments that really count, ones you didn’t even know happened. The determination on Rhett’s face warms my heart. I hope he has the determination of his parents to do what makes him happy in life!

One comment

  1. Sara Moore says

    I have been listening to that song on repeat for days! My husband is about to go crazy! 🙂 Can’t wait to get started on my re-brand with you! XO!

    January 30, 2013
Categories: branding

DITA BONNEVILLE GLASSES  /// kate spade Things We Love book /// loren hope isis studs /// essie Meet me at Sunset polish /// Mac lipstick Russian Red /// Tory Burch Gold Mocs  /// satchel Leopard Leather Wallet


  1. Christina M. says

    Hello. Just wanted to comment and say how much you inspire me. I am a wife and mother of three and still trying to get my business off the ground. I am truly inspired by you and I have been reading your blog for a while. Continue to do what you do and I look forward to working with you one day. Go girl!

    January 27, 2013
  2. emadmin says

    Christina – thank you SO much for your comment! It brought tears to my eyes knowing this! Go YOU with three and starting a business!

    January 29, 2013
Categories: emily's favorite things, style

I am over the moon to introduce the brand new Embellished Events!

The talented Jen Leiti approached me about designing a brand new look for her wedding planning business, Embellished Events.

She wanted her personality to show through with the new branding, loved strong visual brands such as Tory Burch and adored gold foil.

Jen is known for her sense of coastal chic style all the way down to her coveted coral jewelry.

Hope you love it as much as Jen and I do – you can read all about it on her blog here.


  1. Kate says

    I love this! The color palette is perfect- great job!

    January 22, 2013
  2. Angela says

    Beautiful branding! Love the pops of colors on the oh-so-lovely gold!

    January 23, 2013
Categories: branding

In a world of  school shootings and just plain nastiness – I am often reminded that there is still good in people. Pure goodness in their soul and it is a good feeling.

Yesterday was one of those days where I was reminded of this not once, not twice but FOUR times….all before lunchtime. WOW, GOD works in so many ways and through so many people.

It all started with a morning run to Chickfila for breakfast with my little guy and then a quick grocery store trip.

At Chickfila, I was too busy chatting on the phone with my friend to even realize that the car in front of me has just graciously paid for my breakfast. Without expecting anything in return, this complete stranger brought tears to my eyes as I was handed this note and my receipt.

Folks – it didn’t stop here. Flabbergasted, I headed to Publix for groceries thinking of ways in which I could pay it forward.

As some of you may know, grocery trips with a 1 year old can be quite interesting. I was getting organized with my list as I headed towards the meat department. A Publix employee called out ‘Ma’am, is this yours?’ I turned around to find my wedding present from Patrick lying on the ground disguised to the naked eye by the speckled floor. There sat my David Yurman bracelet for the world to take for their own and this sweet man took the time to pick it up and return to its owner. I wish I could have given that man all the money I had. I would have probably not realized it was missing until later that day, in which it would have been followed by a sickening feeling in my stomach knowing it was gone forever.  Okay, so 2 times today? God, I get the point – I need to pay it forward.

As we continued through the store in the last aisle, I see another Publix employee walking up to other moms asking if a shoe belonged to them. In his hand sat Rhett’s little Merrill shoe. I looked down to find that Rhett had kicked off his shoe by the dairy section. Sweet Jesus, what else could possible happen today. Talk about getting hit in the face with the grace of God and a big fat lesson. Beneath the appearance of these silly material objects sat a lesson of Paying it Forward.

We headed towards the parking lot and loaded in the groceries. I sat in the front seat taking a breath of exhaustion and ready to head home. This was followed by a knock on my car window by yet, ANOTHER Publix employee. In his hand sat my $15 Beef Roast which was left at the check out. Those aren’t cheap and he took the time to run it out to my car to deliver it to me. Sweet sweet man.

While I starting paying back all of these good deeds to other people, I encourage you to do the same. Pay for someone’s coffee….lunch….dinner even! You just never know what battles people are fighting or what simple acts could cheer up their day.

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Categories: downloads, in the life of..., inspired by

We are busy bees over here working on a brand new online shop full of luxury personalized gifts and paper.

In the meantime, I thought you might like to see our branding styling guide for the new blog and online store.

I used some of my favorite things: GOLD, SHIMMER, STRIPES and CONFETTI. So fun and totally me!

By creating the interweaving E+M Monogram, I was able to create a greek key pattern for use in packaging and marketing materials.

Love what you see? [email protected] for more information on branding you and your business.

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  1. The Evolution of a Brand | Emily McCarthy
Categories: branding, emily's favorite things

We started quite a few brands in 2012 over at EMMA J DESIGN but will be wrapping up all of the final details in 2013. I cannot WAIT to share with you all of these wonderful branding designs, printed collateral and custom websites. It is so rewarding to see a tiny idea transform into a full-blown visual overload of eye candy. These are just sneak peeks for now, but just wait…more to come! Interested in branding design for your new business or want to give your brand a facelift? Say hello [email protected]

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Categories: branding

It’s funny how times have changes. We used to get gussied up in a tux and cocktail dress, attend the local live band soiree and toast champagne until the early morning hours. For a few years at least, NYE will be a bit different – but still fun!

 Not only is it NYE, but also my birthday! WHAT? Yes, best birthday EVER. AND it turns out one of my dear friends Savanna has the same birthday. Double trouble we were last night! If you would have asked us a couple of days ago, we would have said NYE was going to be spend at home sick with bronchitis and pajamas. Between breathing treatments for Rhett and a sick hubby, things weren’t looking good. Our friends were having a huge oyster roast and we were bummed to be homebound.

We decided last minute to throw together the kiddos, toss in a few pack and plays and air mattresses and oh yeah, sequins still made an appearance. We might have been home but we made the best of it – one of my favorite birthdays yet!

 There MIGHT have been live piano playing, oyster eating, prosecco toasting, runway practicing, a few backbends and a hand stand. Cheers!

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Categories: in the life of...

The clocks have struck midnight and all of the new year resolutions are starting today. What are yours?

Nothing like a new year to launch new ideas, set new goals for ourselves and create a fresh start. We can make our goal lists, mark our calendars and hold each other accountable for these new resolutions, but when it comes down to it, it’s up to us.

What is in store for me in 2013?

Only time will tell – all I can do is set goals for myself and my business and pray that God takes me into the direction I am intended. I know that I am using a God-given talent and sharing it with others. Isn’t that the point? I’ve never felt so fulfilled than using my talents every day to make my clients’ vision come to life. It might be a bride with her June wedding or it might be a brand new look for a photography business. Either way, the goal is always the same – creating a beautiful visual representation of the client.

I do know one thing for 2013, we are designing the most fabulous online shop you have ever laid your eyes on and I cannot wait to open it for business! It will be filled with inspirational art prints, hand-lettered monogrammed goods and boutique paper products.

In the meantime, I would LOVE to work with you on creating a unique and authentic look for you or your business.

Cheers to 2013 and I look forward to hearing from you. Drop me a note [email protected] to get started.

*My sweet birthday twin (yes, our birthdays are NYE – how fun!) gave me this card and I just love how things happen for a reason – what a great way to start off the new year. I redesigned it for you to download, pin or share to your heart is content!

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Categories: branding, downloads, in the life of..., inspired by