Designer Moment: The Arty Apples

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Tell us about yourself!

We both still live in our hometown where we were born. A small market town in the Cotswolds.

Tell us about the space where you do your work.

We both work from our homes. As all our design work is done on laptops, we have the freedom to choose where to work. Somedays we will work at our desks, sometime in the garden and other times lounging on the sofa.

What is your background in art/design? What got you started creating?

Michelle – After working for many years in retail with the demands of middle managers and dealing with staff issues I had had enough, so I started to learn some new skills in digital design. I then made the decision that life is too short not to do something you love, so that was the turning point and making it into a successful business was even better. We now work full time on the business and I enjoy every day.


Leanne – I always dreamt of being a graphic designer. I studied Art and Graphics for GCSE; however, the careers advisor basically steered me to do math, based on where I had natural aptitude. So art was put on the back burner, but after becoming a mum, I decided life is really too short to not do what you love. It’s at this point I decided to go back to my passion and setup a creative company.


Where do you find inspiration for your designs?

Anywhere and everywhere. Once we get an idea for a product we tend to research other examples to ensure our products would be different to what’s currently offered. We draw inspirations from magazines, children’s books, illustrators and greetings cards.

When do you feel most creative? Your least?

We both create our best work around the middle of the day. We are certainly not early birds or night owls.

What are your favorite products to design on Zazzle?

Photo backdrops, as they are a fairly new product and they complement work we already have in our shop.

What was the very first Zazzle product that you sold?

Fall-themed address cards

What are your five favorite products in your store?

Personalized Wedding Favor ‘Thank You’ Coaster

Wedding Backdrop Photo Prop Custom Background

Art Deco Wedding Welcome Photo Booth Back Drop

Change of Address ‘We Have Moved’ House String Light Announcement

Fingerprint Wedding Guest Book

Do you have any advice for new Zazzle Designers?

Don’t give up – it does take a while to get noticed and royalties can be slow to start, but just keep adding high-quality designs and the hard work will pay off.

Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you?

We both love anything crafty. We teach my (Leanne’s) daughters/Michelle’s granddaughters in the hopes one day they will open their own Zazzle stores.

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