Hello everyone, my name is Ellie, I'm 23 and I have Cystic Fibrosis.
13 months ago I decided to set up my own designs business specialising in greeting cards and gift design.
One afternoon with a cup of tea in one hand and a pencil in the other I decided to sketch away. Using watercolours to add a pop of colour I was very pleased with the outcome. I then decided to go one step further and print my illustrations on to card to create greeting cards. For a personal touch (as I love anything girlie) I hand decorated all the cards with glitter. Family and friends were telling me how lovely they were and that they would buy them. Buoyed on by this support, my confidence started to grow, so I booked a couple of Christmas stalls, where I received many lovely compliments but sales as well. I knew then that I was onto something. I, therefore, decided to turn it into a business.
Since then I have gone on to sell on Etsy, create my own website from scratch, learn how to manage money, negotiate deals, hunt for the best prices for stock, and sell around the world – Australia, Canada & Germany. But most exciting of all, I have expanded my range which now includes mugs, tea towels and notebooks.
I have recently been approached to give a motivational speech to a group of vulnerable young ladies. I'm honoured to be asked. I never thought I'd be seen as an inspiration, to me I'm just doing what I love.
I have goals that I want to reach and I have a long way to go but I keep in mind that it's all about one step at a time and by doing this, I can hardly believe what I have already achieved. These last 13 months have been a massive confidence booster. Every day is different and every week brings exciting opportunities. The most important thing you can do is believe in yourself.