For this week’s Friday Feature I’m absolutely delighted to introduce my good friend - with the best smile on the planet - Emily Blake. I met Emily when I lived in Lancashire and we worked together designing shoes - I did ladies and Em did the kids collections. She’s gone on to set up her own label and collection of gorgeous shoes called Taylor Blake
Footwear Designer, Founder and general dogs body of footwear brand Taylor Blake Ltd.
How did you get into what you do?
“I have been a footwear designer for 18 years and am a mum to two fabulous children, a boy and girl and I absolutely love working in shoes. I took a career break after having the children as flying off to the Far East to source materials just didn’t really work with two under 4’s at home! So, I gave up my job to look after my family for a few years. I still had the ideas, the passion and the drive for designing shoes but I wanted to change my direction. Throughout my career I have always worked on a large scale. Big shoe orders, from big companies, with big factories, churning thousands of pairs of shoes out to far flung corners of the world. Boxes heading to the high streets of Britain and cartons departing for supermarkets. And I loved it. The travel and the many fabulous people I worked with far and wide. But.... I always knew that one day I'd work closer to home on a project that for me would be a little more special, something that would feel a little more personal. I knew that one day I would work with smaller European family inherited factories. Within a less frantic environment, where beautiful materials and high quality workmanship combine to create something a bit special.”
What are the day to day activities of your work?
“Day to day my job varies so much! Because I work for myself and by myself, my job is as diverse as designing shoes, working on marketing campaigns, talking to press and bloggers, packing and posting shoes, learning (very slowly) accountancy, stock checking… Every single aspect of the company is my responsibility and whilst sometimes it can be overwhelming I’m amazed at how quickly I have learnt and am still learning new skills!”
What’s the best part of you job?
“Making people love their feet! Its simple – I love that my shoes brighten up someone’s day. I hear from my customers all the time when they post on social media or write on my website reviews – I have yet to receive below 5*’s! That really is the best part of my job!”
How do you get your inspiration?
“My inspiration mainly just pops out of my own head! There is no particular source, I see things I love all the time and my mind is a constant jumble of creative thoughts! I design shoes that I love! Shoes I believe people would love to see on their feet rather than following a particular trend.”
What are you currently working on?
“Currently I am working on a new range for Spring Summer 2019. As Taylor Blake is still a new brand I believe the product we have has still a lot of introducing to do to new consumers. In particular I am working within Europe as Taylor Blake continues to expand.”