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Emma Cooper, Entrepreneur

The youngest of three children growing up in Auckland, New Zealand, Emma originally studied to be a hairdresser. Attracted by the creative elements of styling, she found hairdressing didn’t offer the opportunities for expression she had hoped, and frustrated she changed careers. Working as an administrator may not have satisfied her need for creative expression, but when Emma moved to the United Kingdom in 2004, it funded her travel around Europe.
After six years overseas, Emma decided it was time to return to New Zealand, intending to join the police. Emma spent three months traveling alone through South East Asia on the way home, and everywhere she went, she was fascinated by the people she met and the things she saw. Taking copious notes and photographs, Emma was inspired and felt her need for creative expression stirring again.
Arriving home, Emma rekindled her romance with her childhood sweetheart Lyall, a self-employed builder. While planning the wedding, Emma looked for decorations that were both stylish and well made, wanting a ceremony that was individual to both her and Lyall. Eventually Emma realised the best way to deliver the quality she wanted was to make the items herself, which were universally praised by friends and family and quickly attracted attention on Facebook from other brides to be. It was then Emma realised she had a talent for creating unique pieces for others to enjoy in their home.
Now juggling the demands of motherhood to Chelsea (3) and Millen (18 months), Emma finds that her business allows her the flexibility to be fully present in her children’s lives. “I love running my business from home as it means I can still do things with my children. We are regulars at Playcentre, where I am co-president, and if the weather offers opportunities to jump in puddles or play in the paddling pool, I have the freedom that I can prioritise my children” she says.
Becoming a mum has also influenced her product range, with the popular wedding décor giving way to more interior design focused range, including planters, wall hangings and her latest products, DIY kits. Aside from the flexibility, Emma enjoys the personal satisfaction it gives her when she seals the delivery box ready for dispatch, knowing that her pieces are going to be displayed in homes around New Zealand. “I am inspired by beautiful things and the hope that one day, my husband will finish renovating our house so that I can display all my beautiful pieces!