FREE STATIONERY! Calling all brides!

If you are a bride I have worked with... through Emily Ley Paper or Goodpaper (for monograms, invitations OR any other piece for your wedding) ... I would be so delighted if you would give me a review on Project Wedding and/or Wedding Wire. All brides who complete these for me by this Friday and email me to let me know ( will receive a set of personalized stationery FREE! 8 cards and envelopes with your name. Be sure to include your address in your email! :)

My plan is to have these pages up and running when the site launches in January. A Wedding Wire link will be posted next week! MANY many thanks!

Just click HERE to be taken to the correct page to write a review.

Project Wedding vendor reviews  Wedding Dresses, Wedding Photographers, Wedding Songs, Wedding Ideas, Bridal Showers


Goodpaper Holiday Photo Cards

The Goodpaper Holiday Photo Cards are up in the Etsy shop! I've been beyond productive the past few days - spending 4 days in Goodpaper Bootcamp (as I've thoughtfully named it) to make things HAPPEN! Happy Friday!

Words to Live By

Over the past few months, my thoughts on business, work-life balance and ambition have been changing. Thanks to bloggers like these and the book “The Four Hour Work Week,” I’ve found that my attention is turning to “making things happen” and “being good at what I know.” Sometimes, it’s so easy to get lost in the details that we miss the big picture day-to-day.

For instance, I am relentlessly trying to figure out QuickBooks. Connecting PayPal to QuickBooks has proved to be one-hellufa-nightmare. (PS: this is a call for advice, would love to know if you’ve made this work). I spend so much time sorting through transactions and matching them to my chart of accounts that I am pulling valuable time away from what I need to be working on… putting finishing touches on the Goodpaper Wedding Collection for the new website. So finally, I decided to stick to what I “know” and am “good at” and hired an accountant to work with me. We’ll meet for our first time on Friday and continue to meet quarterly to make sure I have my act together.

As a small business, it’s costly to “outsource,” but I’ve found that you have to decide how much you value your time. For me, I value it more than teaching myself QuickBooks :)

Above and beyond the idea of outsourcing what you’re “not good at” is the simple thought (thanks, Dad, for this great quote) we “work to live and don’t live to work.” Remember that your work should be your passion, but shouldn’t drive your life. The Four Hour Work Week suggests that we should remove ourselves from the parts of our business that we aren’t absolutely needed in – and focus on that which drives success and thus drives our own happiness. I, all too often, find myself living to wake up at 6am… and work til midnight. For me, it’s a means to an end – when Goodpaper will be successful enough to support itself. But I also remind myself that besides a business owner and designer, I’m a wife, a friend, a daughter, a sister… and those roles are even more important. As strange as it may sound, those first two exist to support the later.

All in all, remember to spend your days “making things happen” and “being good at what [you] know.” Your passion should drive your happiness without ruling your life. "Balance" is never truly found... it's a constant shifting of commitments from side to side as priorities change all in an effort to remain upright :)

Etsy Tips

Much to my amazement, one of my Goodpaper monograms was featured on the front page of Etsy AGAIN today! This makes twice this month! I chaulked the first feature up to “luck” and kept going about updating Etsy as usual, but after this feature – decided I’d give it some more thought. A few Etsy friends have asked me what I’ve been doing differently? Well.. a few things are key (or so I’m believing at this point)…

RULE #1 :: Make sure your shop reflects your brand and is clean, clear and concise. The Goodpaper brand is very simple and I’ve tried to make my shop reflect that sense of “white space” and minimalism. The introduction contains only what needs to be there – most importantly, links to my website, blog and email address (these get used frequently by visitors).

RULE #2 :: Take REALLY good photos. Invest in a good camera.
I changed all my photos out just before the first front page feature. I think this helped a lot. Clear photos (where the whites look white, not gray… I've found lightboxes dont help this... only natural, direct sunlight) are so important. Here's a good tutorial. Again, I’ve tried to make these as clean as possible. A few months ago, I bit the bullet and invested in a real Rockstar camera – my Canon Rebel XSi with a Macro lens (this is perfect for photographing text and small details). I love this camera and have found shooting in natural sunlight is key.

RULE #3 :: Update and renew items regularly.
I try and add to my shop pretty regularly, but it doesn’t always happen. Most importantly, I try and renew at least 3 items (including one best-seller) every morning. This keeps my items showing up on the “newly listed” feed (also on front page) and shows them early in searches.

RULE #4 :: Be kind and courteous even with outlandish requests. I’ve gotten a few crazy convo’s on Etsy the past few months… buyers asking for me to design logos for free, asking me to copy other designer’s monograms, asking for 3 for the price of one. Even though I can’t help these buyers, I make sure to point them in the right direction and thank them for coming my way J

Best of luck to all you Etsy’ers! New Etsy items to come in the next few months including wedding pieces, Christmas photocards, new monograms and LOTS of personalized stationery!

Font Love

As you may already know... I have a small... well, large... obsession with fonts. I just can't help myself sometimes. It's sort of out-of-control. My Fonts is perhaps, my favorite Font site - but there are quite a few other sites that offer free fonts. Some of them are really great and offer some pretty great fonts. Here are a few of my favorite font sites as well as a few really pretty FREE fonts for your DIY projects!

Our Anniversary Weekend

We're back! Indian Rocks was a great trip. Thanks to our friends Jeff & Lisa for letting us stay in their beautiful condo for the weekend! It was so nice just to get away and talk about the past year. It's been such an adventure and so much fun. I must say... I'm the luckiest girl in the world to be married to my best friend.

Bryan, who isn't one for big surprises, pulled out all the stops this weekend. When we arrived at the condo, we changed and went to dinner at Conch Republic. It was really good... then afterwards, we grabbed a bottle of wine and headed back to the condo. When we walked in, Bryan led me to the kitchen and started talking about how bad our cake topper tasted (attention brides :: it's gross). We had attempted to taste it the day before and gave up when we decided it tasted like licking the inside of an ice maker. Bryan opened the condo fridge door and surprised me with my ABSOLUTE favorite... peanut butter chocolate Wright's cake. I promise we did NOT eat as much as it looks like... the poor cake slid off it's board inside the box and squished part of it... :( If you're anywhere in South Florida... you have to come to Tampa and visit Wright's Deli. Their cakes weigh about 20lbs (and probably put that much on your hips) and are the best around.

After I got over my giddiness over his surprise, he pulled out a little box and gave me a beautiful diamond ring that matches my wedding band. Now I have one on each side of my engagement ring.... one from our wedding day and one from our 1 year anniversary. I teared up big time. Photos to come! :)

One Year Anniversary

.Bryan and I are off to Indian Rocks Beach to get away for our one-year anniversary on Sunday. The best year of my life... with my best friend. Have a great weekend everyone!

Good Blogs

I've been blogging for years now... but my blogging started as personal and lengthy and has, with the "birth" of my business, morphed into something more succinct and "hot topic" -ish. My undergraduate degree is in English Writing (Masters is in Public Administration, randomiknow) so I've always had a passion for literature, reading, writing and sharing my thoughts - as random as they seem to be sometimes.

Lately, I've been drawn to blogs about business, social-networking, new-media and fashion. I love story-telling blogs also. And most of all, I love blogs that update frequently and have really great photos. Two keys to succesful blogs, if you ask me. I wanted to share with you a few of my most favorite blogs... the ones I check throughout the day - even when I should be more focused on other things. Cant wait for the unveiling of the "goodpaper" blog in January... mmmm goodness!

Lara Casey - All Business
A Rockstar in her field, social-media expert and overall joyful person - and from my hometown of Pensacola.

Style Me Pretty - Backstage
We all know and love SMP, but check out Abby's newest Blog - "Backstage" where she tells the stories behind her business, her day-to-day life and even her history as an invitation designer. Love it.

Meg Baisden Photography
Not only super good friends of mine, but real innovators in the world of photography. Check out Fusion Media also. If you're getting married, call them. All the cool kids do ;)

Sarah + Abraham
A very sweet small business owner whose had great success. Her blog offers great advice and frequent updates on her company.

DesignSponge - Biz Ladies
Super resource for women business owners - not to mention trend-watching.

Jack & Izzy
Another super sweet designer. Her blog tells a great story of a new business growing...

Sarah Jane Studios
One of the most inspiring stories of a small business owner taking over the world with her lovely artwork. my future child [one day... hold your horses]'s nursery will be decked out in Sarah Jane goodness

The Business of Being Creative
For the business side of us creative types - Sean Low is the brainchild behind the success of Preston Bailey. Read him. Follow him.

Zen Habits - Simple Productivity
Love this. Sanity = simplicity for me.

ETSY Storque - Quit Your Day Job
One of my newest favorites. Follow Etsy'ers as they tell their stories of turning their hobbies and dreams into full time jobs. One can dream...



In honor of the Fall weather that's coming (and bringing so many beautiful Fall weddings!) I'm offering one set of 125 ivory, square invitation sets for $200. This includes the following:
  • Ivory square envelopes with return address printed on back flap
  • Ivory square invitations
  • Ivory response cards with return address printed on front
  • Ivory response cards
  • Printed on extremely heavy, soft textured paper with textured, matching envelopes
To purchase: email Emily at ASAP! First come first serve!

Gorgeous Letterpress Invitations

So excited to share my latest letterpress invitation suites. I just finished these beautiful invitations for a big Southern wedding in Mississippi. These are definitely in my top 5 favorites!

The paper behind the invitations will be used for envelope liners. The stock is Arturo - see the deckled edges? Gorgeous.

Etsy Tuesdays

I've just realized that my biggest days for sales on Etsy are Tuesdays. How interesting! According to my Google Analytics, a good 60% of my correspondence and sales from my shop all take place on the most random day of the week. I'm not really sure why this is - perhaps brides are likely to be bored at work and surfing Etsy by almost mid-week? :)

Vintage Stamps

One of my newest obsessions :: Vintage Stamps. Yesterday, I got the greatest little package in the mail from a fantastic stamp retailer called Champion Stamp out of NYC. Oh how I wish I'd known about them when I was there in July! They have an online catalog in PDF format that you can look through, note item numbers and quantities you'd like (great photos of the stamps are included as well as [great] prices for each) and email them off an order. My stamps arrived about a week later.

Vintage stamps are a great way to give personality to invitations or even personal stationery. I've always collected the "cool" stamps the Post Office issues every year to use with the right letter or thank you note... but the vintage stamps are so pretty! You can mix and match to add up to the right postage needed.

The Goodpaper website will feature about 30 personalized stationery options. For the product photos, each will be paired with a kraft envelope (another new obsession... colored envelopes will be available also) adorned with different "Southern" vintage stamps(including the charming ones above!)

Photo from 100 Layer Cake

GOOD NEWS::Goodpaper on the ETSY HOMEPAGE!


UPDATE: 486 on the Goodpaper Etsy Shop page today thanks to this publicity!
Perhaps my proudest moment yet! One of my Goodpaper monograms from my Etsy Shop was featured on the FRONT PAGE of ETSY today (photo at bottom left)! Another shop owner sent me a convo to let me know. My husband took a screenshot and sent it to me because I was out and about! SO excited! What a great few days its been for Goodpaper.

GOOD NEWS::Goodpaper in Stationery Trends Mag!



I was recently quoted in the Fall Edition of Stationery Trends Magazine (as the owner of Goodpaper) on the value of social networking for small businesses! Martha Stewart and Crane & Co are featured in the very same edition! My copy arrived today. In the quote, I mentioned two of my idols... Lara Casey of Southern Weddings Magazines, Bliss Event Group and Lara Casey Reps (LOVE her blog. Follow it.) and Abby Larson of Style Me Pretty. Check out what they're doing with social networking. Very forward thinking, I love it.

This is the first publicity Goodpaper has received - even before the big site launch! Hopefully a sign of things to come... I've been so swamped with wedding and Christmas orders that I haven't even been able to think about or work on the launch or the new website. This was exciting.

Thanks to Sara, their Editor, for contacting me!